Friday, November 24, 2006
Sam Haine feels like he's "in quicksand, sinking fast" in Bruce Cook's first novel. Here is he, a simple agent for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Homeland Security, tracking a shipment of arms meant for a Texas paramilitary group. He didn't know what he was getting into when he was sent to the Republic of the Philippines.
Haine didn't know the Philippines was a world of payoffs. Everyone is crooked in the world of sex, sin and sales. It's a country where terrorism, the sex trade and gun-running intersect. As Sam's contact in the Philippine National Bureau of Investigation, "Bogie" Lorenzano explained, the country is "Crimes layered on top of other crimes, intersections betweeen different criminal gangs."
Philippine Fever is a fast-paced story of one man's fight in a confusing world he doesn't quite understand. Haine's quest is thwarted by the American government, the CIA, Philippine politicians, and parties who are involved when no one knows it. As Cook takes Sam Haine into this strange world, he takes the reader on the same wild ride. Cook brilliantly brings all the worlds together in a smashing conclusion. After following Haine into the mire of the politics and life in the Philippines, it's almost a relief to have loose ends tied up.
(Side note - Cook's research and knowledge of the Philippines is evident, and very helpful to the reader.)
Bruce Cook's website is www.brucecookonline.com
Philippine Fever by Bruce Cook. Capital Crime Press, ©2006. ISBN 0977627675 (paperback), 288p.