Tranquility Initiative by Joan Meijer
About The Book:
Wars were the inevitable result of the destabilization of the Middle East. They were small wars as wars go; bloody, destructive, battles waged between ethnic groups in the wake of the American invasion of Iraq and its subsequent defeat at the hands of the insurgents. Even with the emergence of dictators, who kept their mutual hatreds and suspicions in check for a time, the differences between ethnic groups and religious factions could not be held in check forever. Now those differences emerged with new vigor. The wars that were the creation of religious leaders hoping for bigger power bases, focused the people's attention on the grievances of their divisive past at the expense of any hope for a prosperous future. Brushfire after brushfire flared up throughout even relatively stable Middle Eastern nations. Before long, they had traveled up into the Muslim areas of the former Soviet Union. They spread in all directions, until they came at last to the sixteenth century Tartar strongholds in the ancient war zone that surrounded the historic city of Astrakhan. The members of the European Economic Community and NATO, threatened by their own Muslim communities, were determined to avoid involvement at all cost. Burned by the Wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, and wary of their own huge Islamic populations, they steadfastly refused to be dragged into the swirling vortex of ethnic dissention playing out in ever widening circles on their eastern flank. They chose instead to let the various factions settle their differences among themselves. The predictable result was genocide. Then, ten years after the turn of the 21st Century, the bloody skirmishes took on a whole new significance. The Nation of Islam united and began to ascend outside the Middle East. When it became obvious that the bottom third of the former Soviet Union was falling under the influence of the Iranian mullahs, Europe became restless. As the Jihad nibbled at the corners of the western world once again, Europe went on the defensive. The United States became involved in what became known as the Astrakhan War, by increments. It had all looked good on paper; a UN Peacekeeping profile, with the support of NATO, doing the right thing to prevent world war. Americans joined their allies in an all out effort to contain the threat to the European way of life. There was worldwide agreement that something had to be done and, if done in concert, would naturally be victorious. Once again, American mothers sent their children to fight on the side of right. Once again, the leaders of the free world were dead wrong. The concept of peace through war only works when the countries seeking to interfere in the affairs of another country are, and continue to be, committed to the fight. In a religious war, people who lack fanaticism are at a decided disadvantage. As the Astrakhan Intervention dragged on, the American population was once again faced with a test of its resolve. 9/11 was a distant memory, and without a similar catalyst, Americans could not see the point of protecting the citizens of a country thousands of miles from home. What had started as a firm desire to do the right thing became a grinding intervention in the kind of civil unrest that would not go away. Taxes were raised, the balancing of the budget was put on hold, body bags began to flood into hometowns.....
At first the book was hard to get into, only because it was packed with so much information right away. But once you got past that (very quickly), and understood what was going to happen, then it got better! And I stayed up past midnight to finish this book! This book is jam packed with suspense, mystery, military gun-ho fighting, drama, and a good bit of horror. This story could be a sensitive read to some, as there is a lot of political/religious stuff, as well as very graphic details and profanity. But, I think that all of that has to be in the story to make it such the great read that it is!
About The Author:
Joan Meijer is the author of twenty fiction and non-fiction books and a dozen short stories including the ground breaking "MetaFitness: Your Thoughts Taking Shape" - featured on Oprah. Her most recent fiction release is "Tranquillity Initiative" a medical thriller about an anthrax attack on New York City. Joan has just won The Author's Show Contest and will be included in the 2011 edition of "50 Great Writers You Should Be Reading." She is also one of the 2010 winning writers in National Novel Writing Month - completing her book "Relentless: The Search for Typhoid Mary" now available in Kindle. Joan is the former president of The National Emergency Care Advisory Council which worked with the major Networks Program Practices Departments to correctly represent first aid in programming. She is a former New York City Paramedic but she says she's save more lives as a First Aid Instructor for the American Red Cross. One of the lives she saved was that of a 38 year old student who, as a result of her teaching, recognized that he was having a heart attack even though he was exceptionally fit and young, took himself immediately to the hospital where he went into cardiac arrest as he walked in the door. Both "Tranquillity Initiative" and her first novel "Provenance," a rescue story based on a true event in New York, are available on Kindle. Learn more at Joan Meijer's Website.
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I received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author. All thoughts and opinions are my own.