The Geronimo Breach pits the world's most unlikely protagonist against the deadliest adversaries on the planet. From the corridors of Langley to the sweltering jungles of Panama, from the hills of Pakistan to the cocaine trails of Columbia, a clandestine scheme to preserve a terrible secret goes horribly awry, plunging a reluctant hero down a deadly rabbit hole of deceit and betrayal, while raising disturbing questions about the media, the war on terror & its linkage with the war on drugs, & the nature of reality in an age of sound-bites and photo ops.
Albert Ross is a malingering misanthrope - a boozing, chain smoking philanderer; shifty, lazy, cowardly, going to fat, & more prone to doing the wrong thing than any man alive. His purgatorial existence working for the State Department in Panama gets shattered when a routine errand becomes a race against the clock, battling adversaries for whom no price is too high to protect a secret that could topple the world order. As the body count climbs in a struggle without rules, Al must face his own demons, as well as the myriad very real ones intent upon destroying him. The unexpectedly shattering conclusion of this richly drawn thriller is both topical & chillingly plausible, making for a roller-coaster action/adventure without parallel.
Q & A for The Geronimo Breach w/ USA Today bestselling author Russell Blake
Question: The Geronimo Breach is a radical departure from your usual thrillers. In this, we follow the tribulations of arguably the most horrible protagonist on the planet. Why write this character, this story, this way?
RB: It started off as a knee-jerk reaction to several books I'd read, where the heroes were bland & predictable. So over a few beers, I thought, what about writing a hero who's so despicable there's no way anyone could like him, but by the end of the book, in spite of him or ourselves, we do? Anyone can write a hero with appeal. How about one who has no appeal, and will actually do the worst possible thing for his situation, every time? A slob who's so low, he's compulsively losing even when he could win? Out of that came Al, who is probably the most remarkable character I've ever written. Can he prevail? Can he be redeemed? Is he even worth redeeming? Al's my favorite character out of all my books, by far. No question.
Q: The Geronimo Breach's conspiracy is a shocker, & calls into question some sacred beliefs. Have you gotten any negative feedback about it?
RB: Other than the circling black helicopters, you mean? Seriously, I just took something that seemed absurd to me on its face, & proposed an alternative possibility. If it rings true, that says a lot for my powers of invention, or more accurately, about the official story. Will we ever know the truth? Who even knows what the truth is anymore?
Q: The Geronimo Breach has drawn acclaim from other authors as being landmark & defining. What's your take on it?
RB: I think Geronimo is one of the books I'd recommend to readers who've never read one of my books. If they want to know how I differ from the monosyllabic guys cranking out formulaic screeds featuring hackneyed characters in formulaic situations, my response would be, read Geronimo. I'm particularly proud of the characters & the plot twists and turns, & would argue there's no other book quite like it. How often can you say that?
Q:Why do readers respond the way they do to Al?
RB: I think it's refreshing to read a protagonist who's so badly flawed. We see in him bits of ourselves, or people we know, & that resonates as being true. Al is remarkable, in that even after I finished with him, he lingers in my psyche like fungus. Hard to shake him.