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Review: Project Lachesis By Nita DeBorde

23000904And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and threescore and ten men: and the people lamented, because the LORD had smitten [many] of the people with a great slaughter. – Samuel 6:19

(Those Christians really know all about smiting, don’t they?)

It began as a dark, fast moving fog bank moving in from the south and pouring over the Galveston Island seawall. Relentlessly working its way across the world, by the time it dissipates a week later, over 90% of the world’s population is dead. Is it the wrath of god, wiping its disappointment from its eyes? The Mother, cleansing the plague of all-destroying humans from her skin? Maybe it is aliens, clearing the fields before a new crop can be planted, a crop which won’t rape and pillage the land and its creatures. Or maybe…

I am become death, the destroyer of worlds. – J. Robert Oppenheimer

Nah, that’s all right, Dr. Oppenheimer. You can rest quietly in your grave. Because you’ve got nothing on this shiny new toy. For you see, it is really quite odd, isn’t it, that only the politicians and military survived in the US. Well, and the medical personnel. Because you really do need a nurse sometimes.

“… while madness in individuals is relatively rare, it is virtually a prerequisite for a certain sort of political leader.” ― Joyce Carol Oates, The Accursed

There are of course shadows of Stephen King’s The Stand here (I own the ‘Complete and Uncut edition’). As well as The Demon in The Freezer and The Hot Zone. Richard Preston did a great job with those. But while King relies on a supernatural basis for his story, and Preston uses a light hand in his works, Nita DeBorde rips off the bandages, tears off the scabs, and runs full bore into the glaring, painful light of reality. Hitler, Pol Pot, and the American government that chose to drop the bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki and to conducting biological, chemical and radiological experiments on American citizens, is no more than dabbling a toe into the demonic waters of biological and chemical warfare compared to this small group of politicians and military personnel.

From Tuskegee to Project F, the Guatemalan Experiment, MKULTRA and Dr. Robert MacMahan’s 1969 request for funds for synthetic biological agent to which no natural immunity exists, to the 1995 confession by Dr. Garth Nicolson that biological weapons used during the Gulf War were not only manufactured in Houston and Boca Raton, but were tested on Texas Department of Corrections Prisoners (Ha! Take THAT Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan! You can’t do it, but WE CAN! Goooo America!!!) the American government has shown all the moral and ethical solidity of a three-year-old handed an Uzi and set amongst his fellow babes. But this time? The safety is off, the gun is locked and loaded, and the whole world goes down. And you know what?

They aren’t done yet.

I received Project Lachesis from the publisher in exchange for a realistic review. All thoughts are my own, including the thought that I am going to be stalking Nita’s Nook, the author’s website, hoping to be there when she needs a beta reader for her next book. This woman is AMAZING!!!!

About the Author

Nita DeBorde is a published author and professional copyeditor and translator from Houston, TX. Nita taught high school French for fifteen years before leaving education in 2014 to focus on a freelance writing career.

Connect with the Author

• Nita DeBorde’s Website
• Facebook Page
• Follow @ndeborde913 on twitter

Beta/Review: The Eagle & the Arrow – A.J. O’Connell

EagleAndArrowFinalCoverRGB96dpiDue out: June 11, 2013

Every leader, and every regime, and every movement, and every organization that steps across the line to terrorism must be banished from the discourse of civilized human life.

ALAN KEYES, speech, Apr. 21, 2002

The big threat to America is the way we react to terrorism by throwing away what everybody values about our country–a commitment to human rights. America is a great nation because we are a good nation. When we stop being a good nation, we stop being great.

BOBBY KENNEDY, O Magazine, Feb. 2007

What must we do, how far must we go, to preserve our way of life? Our very lives? And where, we must ask, should the line be drawn, the line which divides the moral from the immoral?

In this very short novel, A. J. O’Connell asks that question in the voice of one of those many minions of government placed in the position to make those tough decisions – who lives? And who dies? And like so many other of her stripe, it isn’t until much later that she begins to ask “And who, really, gets to make those decisions?”

I loved this little book. Of course, I am myself torn by the actions of our government, actions which, though often praised, should just as often be questioned. What is the true rationalization behind how certain governmental entities choose to address terrorism? Who makes the choices as to who is deemed a terrorist and how that decision is made? I should be quite clear in stating that I am absolutely and without question anti-terrorism of any sort.

Terrorism is, in my mind, the most savage and unworthy act a human can commit against others, no matter the reason. However, I am also not a fan of some of the methods we, as Americans, seem to condone in the so-called “War on Terror.” While I am not a Hawk, I am certainly not a Dove, either. There must be, as in all things governmental, a balance – a balance that is often sadly lacking in the management capabilities of those who are chosen to govern.

Ms. O’Connell puts it quite well in her introduction to this story:

Lastly, I would like to thank the U.S. Government for not coming to my house and carrying me off in the middle of the night while I researched this. I realize that my search history looks pretty suspicious.”

And that, my dears, is the whole point, in a nutshell. A. J. does a masterful job of placing her characters in a situation which has no right or wrong, no true good guys (though one true bad guy posing as a good guy who deserves to have very, very bad things happen to him . . . ) and no real winners in a situation spiraling totally out of control. As Hunter Thompson so succinctly put it:

The Edge… there is no honest way to explain it because the only people who really know where it is are the ones who have gone over.”

If your interests are the smart, the funny, the snide and the thoughtful, don’t miss this little book. It is a true gem of Modern Americana with a twisted mindset that has me looking forward to going back and reading the first book, as well as look forward to anything Ms. O’Connell writes next.

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