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Book Excerpt: Red Deception, an international thriller

After reading Red Deception, an international thriller by Gary Grossman and Ed Fuller, I am expecting a subsequent installment of this successful series of books that follows the protagonist, Dan Reilly, in quashing an intentionally-released viral plague!

After opening with a sequence that teases several terrorist groups infiltrating the United States, the book jumps to Dan Reilly stuck in rush hour traffic on the 14th Street Bridges connecting Washington, D.C. with northern Virginia. An expertly executed operation has blown a gaping hole in the bridges and left vehicles smashed and smoldering. Reilly jumps out of his taxi:

Reilly went from car to car in his immediate area. He helped those he could get to. They included people in shock who were otherwise unharmed, but so disoriented they walked toward the blast zone. Reilly turned them around, pointed the way off the bridge, and had them hold hands to make their fleeing a purposeful group activity. Reilly tried to get closer to the twisted and smoldering vehicles in the blast zone, but the intense heat and toxic smoke that came in rolling waves prevented him from making real ground. Besides, he couldn’t tell if the bridge section would hold.

He stood and took stock of what to do next. The answer came to him. Run!

A truck, just feet from the spreading fire, was leaking gas. It was flowing in his direction. In a matter of seconds another fifty feet of the bridge would be engulfed in flames. Reilly caught up with the group he had walking hand-in-hand. He took the lead and shouted, “Move, fast! Now!”

Dan Reilly was in complete crisis mode now. There was no time for calm. He used all the authority in his voice and body language to get people through the chaos. The sounds, the smells, and the sight took him back to other locales, other attacks — all too recently, a terrorist attack in Tokyo, and years before that Afghanistan.

Now, as President of Kensington Royal Hotels’ international division and the force behind the creation of the company’s global threat assessment program, known as Red Hotel, Reilly relied on instinct. He was, after all, Army-trained and State Department-tempered. Experience drove the dark-haired, six foot, 180-pound corporate executive in this new moment of crisis.

“Faster!” he yelled…

A good thriller follows Reilly from Washington to Chicago to London. Ahead of a planned trip to Paris, he gets rerouted to Argentina — foiling an attempt to kill him. From there he’s off to supervise the evacuation of staff and guests from one of his hotels in a former satellite of Soviet Russia that is now in the cross-hairs of the Russian president. Stitched through his travels are scenes in the United States of further terrorist mayhem. What will be the next target on American soil? Will the United States leave Ukraine and Latvia to the not-so-tender mercies of the ambitious Russian president, who wants to restore Russian hegemony on all former satellite countries? Who can be trusted, and who cannot? And is there anyway he can shake an annoyingly persistent New York Times investigative reporter?

Red Deception is the second book in the Red… series. I look forward to reading the first, Red Hotel. Disclosure: the publisher of Red Deception sent the book to Orange County Breeze in hopes of gaining a review.

Attend the next Cypress Chamber of Commerce (virtual) networking breakfast on June 8. Orange County Breeze will give away our copy of Red Deception as a door prize!