Elements of Chance

This book is about a righteous man in a bent world; a man who allows his sense of duty to be twisted by an all encompassing need for revenge which leads to a horrible catastrophe. It is only years later, when the men he served are trying to kill, him that he finally comes to understand; there is no escape, there is only conclusion.

This book is also about two kinds of hubris; the first taints the corridors of power, infecting those who inhabit them with the false conceit that a strategy will work simply because it is they who have conceived it; the second blinds such men to any reality that conflicts with their own desires and ultimately to the concept of chance, the existence of a whole world of happenstance, seething with events they can neither foresee nor control but which ultimately are destined to become the final arbiters of everything they do.

Ten years into this deadly career, victim of a badly planned operation that resulted in the deaths of innocent school children he fled the world of clandestine ops for the tranquility of the rural hills of Northwest Connecticut and a new career as a teacher.

Now, a decade later, someone is trying to kill him.

A series of unrelated events, initiated by the demolition of a jungle drug lab and Mike’s own school related trip to nearby ruins are given credence by the Iraqi incarceration of Mike’s archeologist daughter Sophie and solidified by the accidental killing of one of his former employer’s agents by the errant arrow of a deer hunter. This complicated series of chance events leads to monumental misinterpretation and a widening circle of death.

From a primitive cell in northern Iraq, to a series of burning Quonset huts on the shore of a peaceful lake in the Guatemalan jungles, by way of the corridors of power in Washington, DC and the offices of a black ops contractor in New York City, a fictitious scenario has been constructed of unrelated, accidentally occurring events. It’s fascinating, intriguing and wholly believable but it’s a lie.

It will result in a series of murders that will force Michael Dietrich to abandon his pastoral existence and return to the deadly ways of his past as he and a small circle of former associates battle to save his daughter, his lover and themselves by bringing down the black ops contractor that had employed him and the vice-presidential candidate who has created this fictitious scenario to hide the horrifying details of his own unacceptable past.

Elements of Chance - Excerpt