Historical Fiction

fallen angels (2012)

 

It is 1961 and President Eisenhower has just delivered his farewell address, warning that science has become a military monopoly. Hundreds of thermonuclear tests are scheduled across the planet in a mad race for mutually assured destruction. Dr. Robert J. Oppenheimer, disgraced director of the Manhattan Project, sits on a beach in the Virgin Islands reading the Mahabharata and contemplating suicide.

The phone rings, setting off a chain of events that will carry the old physicist all the way to Brazil and back again. Tension builds as Oppenheimer desperately searches for a way to stop a murderer ―and save his own soul.

With an esoteric array of eccentric historical figures running from Japanese karate masters and Israeli secret service agents to Nazi doctors and Japanese physicists, the story weaves a complex web between several countries and three different intelligence agencies, with a climax many have described as unforgettable.

The story has developed a nice following amongst those who have read it, and many have mentioned that it has cinematic potential, so I am considering reworking it as a screenplay.

All comments are welcome.

idealist_edited.001

Victor St. Martin is a naive young CIA agent, proficient in several languages, who has been dispatched to Angola to act as an interpreter for local mercenary groups fighting communists in a bloody civil war.

A series of accidents force him to join a ragged crew of international mercenaries, commanded by the murderous loose cannon, Lieutenant Tony Callan. The men wage a terrifying war against the legendary eighth brigade of “The Immortal Monster” Jacobo Caetano, an Angolan so infamous that he is considered a demon by the local people.

He soon learns that he is far out of his depth, as a series of accidents force him to join a motley crew of international mercenaries. Commanded by the murderous loose cannon, Lieutenant Tony Callan, the men wage a terrifying war against the legendary eighth brigade of “The Immortal Monster” Jacobo Caetano, an Angolan so infamous that he is considered a demon by the local people.

The story is based around true events and real historical figures. The Angolan Civil War, which lasted from 1975 to 2002, took the lives of approximately half a million people, and involved more than two dozen countries. It is a forgotten conflict that most people know nothing about.

The book was only completed thanks to two remarkable strokes of good fortune. I developed the idea long ago, but had resigned myself to letting it go unwritten, for lack of reference material about the subject and fear of misportraying history. Then in Quito, Ecuador, an obscure book regarding the activities of the CIA in the region, as well as several other related materials, miraculously fell into my hands. And the month that I was finishing the story, while still quite unsure about several regional topics, an old Angolan acquaintance contacted me to discuss a position teaching Mandarin in her homeland.

Incredible timing.

Again, all comments are more than welcome.