I’ll keep it short. As frequently happens with first time authors, I made a mistake in my choice of publisher. The company went broke and sold all the books to another publisher.
Unfortunately the second publisher was one I could not work with. Also, they never paid me a dime, on books I know sold. After several emails, the company gave me back my book, last year.
When I read the book I realized that the man who started the novel, about ten years ago, wasn’t the same man who would write it now.
I have rewritten, to the extent possible, the book. It was originally called “Piety And Murder.” The new book is Murder And The Preacher. The revised version is a few pages shorter and has a number of typos corrected.
Here’s the synopsis:
Mack Brinson is a retired Special Forces officer, living on the North Shore of Lake Ponchartrain. He lost his wife, Song, to cancer three years ago. [Note: the book Where There Were No Innocents is a prequel and describes Mack and Song’s meeting and falling in love] .
He’s now living with Song’s mother, Huong, and their Bull Terrier, Alex. He’s working as an independent entrepreneur, brokering estate jewelry sales.
Neither he nor Huong, have quite recovered from the loss of Song. He immerses himself in his work and frequently mourns on long walks with only his Bull Terrier as a companion.
Huong has become fascinated by the “faith healers” she sees on TV, coming from the New Orleans area. She is enamored by one in particular, a slimy preacher named Ansel Schoomer. She has been sending his “ministry” money in increasing amounts. The situation has become so critical that Brinson has decided to take action. When he calls, he’s rebuffed. When he makes an ill-advised, but humorous, visit–he’s physically threatened.
Brinson makes a recon trip to Mobile, AL, hoping to catch Shoomer in a scandalous situation, but barely escapes detection and probable death.
Mack’s life begins to change when, on his way back from Mobile, he meets a woman who begins to tear down the emotional walls he’s built around his heart.
Threatening Mack Brinson, however, only makes him more determined. After a late-night shootout on the Lake Ponchartrain Bridge, he calls in his old war buddies to retaliate.
Then, Huong is kidnapped.
Brinson’s true target is not, however, Schoomer. The true, evil, mastermind of the preacher’s organization is a shadowy entity who has unsuspected links to Brinson and his friends, going back to Vietnam.
There are a number of other action scenes and a strong love story. The climactic scene at the end has some characteristics that have caused a few readers to disbelieve. First, those people don’t understand the almost unbelievable toughness and determination of a Bull Terrier.
They also underestimate the same qualities in some men.