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Uncertain Paradise: 1973 [Paperback]

John W. Cassell
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Product Description

From the Publisher

Uncertain Paradise: 1973 [Part One] is a politico-military thriller and the seventh novel penned by John W. Cassell, an up and coming writer that Jack Engelhard, author of the world famous best-selling novel and later smash box office hit movie Indecent Proposal describes as "talent fulfilled".

From a nerve cracking nuclear standoff at the beginning, through months of hit and run guerilla warfare, this story of love, war and intrigue will keep you on the edge of your seat.

From the Author

The original idea for Uncertain Paradise: 1973 was expressed by me some thirty years ago following discharge from the Air Force in an unpublished short story I wrote entitled "The Flower of St. Margaret's".

The tale told in this book was leavened in the intervening years by my quarter-century career as a criminal prosecutor and ten years' residence on a remote tropical island.

The wall to wall action you will find in the story reflects the major currents of the year 1973, everything from the revolutions exported by Castro's Cuba, CIA intervention in developing nations, Soviet nuclear sabre-rattling, the restless agitation for independence in the Third World and the Watergate scandal back in America all find expression within its pages.

From the Inside Flap

On the run from vengeful mobsters and numbers-hunting federal agents, John Cassell and Connie Quintana arrive on the Isle of St. Margaret's shortly after John's twenty-fifth birthday in January of 1973. Whites familiar with the Caribbean island quip: `it's THEE place to visit... if you're a hurricane'. But John and Connie know there's no storm quite as deadly as that caused by an angry Mafia don. They need an out of the way place to come.

From the Back Cover

I guess I knew now how awful Chicken Little must have felt. All sorts of things were just not right... very close to me... on the other side of the island. Yet Cassell would have to do his punishment first.. So the politicians would feel better. Yeah... midnight had come and gone, we were on our own now, but nobody seemed to be wearing a watch.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

From Chapter Five: One Fouled-up Mission of State...(c) John W. Cassell. All Rights Reserved. Reprinted with permission.

Gene was gaining altitude as the clouds of smoke got worse. He switched to the tower frequency as he turned the ship toward the coast.

"Cassell, hit that toggle switch there..." He pointed. "Did the red light go off?"

"Yessir," I gasped.

"Okay, now hit that toggle switch next to it... turn the knob next to that to angle the prop blades to zero..." Gene quickly faced front, his right thumb depressing his headset mike button.

"Cornwallis Tower...MAYDAY...MAYDAY...MAYDAY! This is Militia One... some twelve miles west of Mantilla heading east. I have an engine on fire and no place to land... over!"

"Roger Militia One... picking you up on scope... contacting air rescue... stand by."

My eyes must have been huge, but it was so scary there was nothing to do but work. "Blade angle all the way over, sir."

Gene reached up and pulled back on a lever above my console. The needle on three gauges in my field of vision dropped to zero. He had obviously just shut down the starboard engine. The prop whirled uselessly as flame and smoke shot from behind it.

"Okay, Cassell, now hit the third toggle switch and push the button below it!"

I did. Gene didn't have to ask me the results. It was obvious the fire was still going.

Our stricken aircraft had reached the coast. Gene now turned us to the north and continued onward, losing altitude all the while. The lights of Port Albert loomed ahead, dwarfing the much more modest displays of Mantilla and New Gatwick below and behind us.

"Okay, buddy, here's the plan..."

"Cornwallis Tower to Militia One... over!" the British-accented voice interrupted him.

"Go ahead, Tower."

"Roger... Militia One... Major Hill has ordered a stretch of Highway One cleared for you to land. Military units from the base are organizing now to accomplish that. At the same time, he's scrambled the PT boat squadron. Continue to hug the coast line... if possible keeping
yourself as close to the PT boats as possible. If the fire spreads to the wing, ditch in the water and the crews will pick you up. Understood?"

"Roger Tower... many thanks."

As we passed over the well lit-up British Military reservation, we could see activity in the area of the boats, though none had put to sea yet. Toward the front gate, a line of what the British called lorries, an
urban assault vehicle and several jeeps were queuing up. Several of the lorries were field ambulances, as identified by the large red crosses painted on their roofs. Passing over the harbor, I saw the seaplane, moored where we had left her this morning. A thought of Connie again intruded on my terror. This time it wasn't jealousy at all, just
the prayerful hope I would survive this and get to see her again.

All the while my eyes frequently darted to the wing. The flames continued unabated despite several tries at the sprinkler. The prop had now stopped spinning.

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