Novel blends popular genres to please wide range of readers

The Hadron Escape, by Lawrence De Maria. St. Austin’s Press. 203 pages (estimated). Kindle edition $2.99.

Billed as a “Cole Sudden CIA Thriller,” this latest offering from the indefatigable Mr. De Maria mixes a dollop of imaginary WWII history, present day secret agent intrigue, and a twist on a familiar sci-fi “what if” into an exciting and spirited entertainment. Both fun and funny, “The Hadron Escape” features sex-addicted women who are (with one grotesque exception) amazingly gorgeous and a skilled, wise-cracking operative whose cover is being a writer of thriller novels. HADRON(August2014)

In 1945, mad German scientist Erik Zyster tells SS Colonel Boltke he has discovered the corpse of a nonhuman being. Boltke’s mindset misunderstands “nonhuman” for Jew, but that is not the depraved doctor’s point. He explains, “He had no penis. No testicles no genitals at all.” While Boltke passes this off as a birth defect or sexual aberration, Zyster reveals that the internal organs are unusually sized and positioned.

Jump to 1967. Colonel Boltke has long ago transformed himself into Walter Bannion. Mr. De Maria places him in a small Vermont town near the Canadian border. He had escaped from Europe to Argentina and lived there as Walter Bruschi for many years. When the Israelis captured Adolph Eichman, Boltke planned and executed his next transformation, establishing himself as Bannion in early 1962.

Soon after a minor skiing accident, Boltke/Bannion is surprised by a visit from Dr. Zyster. Zyster tells of his escape from the laboratory he headed, his disguise as a Jewish survivor, and his life since. Then he tells “Bannion” about recent stories describing alien corpses with characteristics just like those he had shown the colonel two decades ago. He also conjectures that aliens where spying on U. S research near Roswell, New Mexico.

De Maria

After adding some speculation about nuclear physics research and space travel, the author launches his main plot. However, first he must have Mossad agent Etan Soul, who has been tracking Zyster, wonder about Zyster’s companion at the ski lodge. After Zyster kills Boltke, Soul kills Zyster, but salvages his attaché case –which he soon ships to Tel Aviv with whatever remnants of the doctor’s research it contains.

The present time: Mr. De Maria builds context about recent U. S. security agency concerns, agency rivalries, and high-tech issues. A top security official receives a mysterious intercepted message regarding the Hadron Collider, the world’s largest subatomic particle accelerator. The message was sent from Commerce, Georgia to a destination in Switzerland where the Hadron is located.  The encrypted transmission has symbols that Laurie Gibbons, the security advisor with a direct presidential pipeline, has never seen before. She learns that Hadron activity distorts electronic transmissions, posing a big problem for code breakers. . . .

To read the entire review, as it appears in the October 14, 2014 Fort Myers Florida Weekly and the October 15 Naples and Punta Gorda/Port Charlotte editions, click here: Florida Weekly – Hadron Escape

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