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February 15 , 2010

The Monsoon Killed the Tiger


“We have unfinished business.” On receiving the cryptic letter postmarked 25 June 2002, Kannon Ballard aborts a motorcycle adventure in the San Juan Mountains and forsakes a girlfriend to return to Việt Nam, a country he desperately has tried to forget. Now a retired CPA and hard-drinking divorcee, Kannon still harbors shame and disgrace due to an ambush that annihilated his patrol. In Saigon, he finds his friend and former interpreter near death, able only to reveal a series of numbers and seemingly incomprehensible words. But Kannon believes the man possessed significant information that could exonerate his name in that long-ago disaster. To find out, Kannon must confront a vicious ex-Viet Cong cell leader turned importer-exporter and track down the retired American infantry major who authored the 1970 After Action Report relieving Kannon of command and threatening court martial. What is the unfinished business? If laid bare, will the evidence prove exonerating? Or is Kannon merely trying to reinterpret vetted documentation to salve his explosive, deprecating emotions resulting from the deaths of those fifteen men? Kannon’s dogged perseverance draws him into a web of past and present atrocities, conspiracy, bootlegged weapons, drug trafficking, and passion, and thrusts him into a combative climax on a storm-ridden night in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of New Mexico. The story’s strength lies in its gritty confrontations and complex characters shaped by their vastly different cultures and religions.
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