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  • Dennis Hetzel

Let's hear it for vets with a flair for writing

Updated: Jun 6




I really enjoy doing book reviews for www.booktrib.com, one of the best places online to discover great books. It has been a pleasure to recognize some of my favorite well-known authors like Harlan Coben and Michael Connelly.


But, let's be honest, Coben and Connelly don't really need my help. The real rewards come when I find a gem of a book from a talented author who hasn't found large audiences. Maybe my review can help, at least a little bit.


That definitely applied to "EO-N," a terrific novel by Canadian Dave Mason (not the rock star who played with Jimi Hendrix and others). Mason imaginatively salutes the work of the Canadian Air Force in World War II in "EO-N." A present-day child finds a combat aircraft frozen in a Norwegian glacier, prompting hope in the Allied pilot's granddaughter that she'll solve a decades-old mystery. If you like military thrillers, I recommend it highly.


I particularly enjoy the chance to work with military vets who have shifted their passion to writing, still making a difference for the rest of us. I look for great stories and characters that raise some larger issues for us to ponder, not just Rambo-like fantasies. For example, I was excited to become an early fan of Don Bentley, a former Apache helicopter pilot and FBI agent. I wrote that his Matt Drake novels make him a logical successor to the late, great Vince Flynn. Don, who has since become a fellow-author friend, recently added the plum assignment, well-deserved, to write the Jack Ryan Jr. books in the Tom Clancy universe. Don's debut, "Without Sanction," is as good as military novels get.


Then there's Anderson Harp, a Marine vet. I had the pleasure of interviewing Anderson for BookTrib recently after I reviewed the latest book in his Will Parker series, "November 400CP Is Missing." Parker goes on an adventure that reminded me of Joseph Conrad's iconic "Heart of Darkness" story. It's a fight against terrorism and for brotherhood that moves from Alaska to the remotest parts of Sumatra.


We thank Anderson for his service. And we thank him for his literary chops, too. You'll find the interview and my review at this link.




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