Thunder Run has officially gone live on Kindle! Everything in Europe will change after this. Whether for the better or worse? That remains to be seen… Europe teeters on the brink… …As all sides consider their next move But can one more blow really end the war? The European Defense Council’s doomsday strike has been averted. More American forces have reached Poland. And the Russians are starting to turn up the pressure in the Baltic. Now, as the EDC’s irregular campaigns ramp up, a decision has to be made. Matt’s team will be back on the tip of the spear, regardless of the plan. But as forces start to move, and the leadership starts to outline their plan, the less he likes it. It sounds like wishful thinking to him. But he’s a Triarii team leader. He’ll always answer the call. Still, the questions remain. Does victory lie at the end? Or a situation made much, much worse? Get it here. And if you liked it, please consider leaving a rating or review.
A week and a half later, I walked into our TOC in Fort Grodzisko. The bunker hadn’t gotten much warmer since the winter, though it had gotten brighter, as more work lights were brought in. We still did some planning and intel collection on computers, but given how fast and how nasty the cyber war had gotten—not to mention how often power grids were being targeted, on both sides of the Atlantic—we used paper maps, whiteboards, and as much analog stuff as we could. And those needed light. Brian Hartrick was waiting in the “Grex Luporum Corner,” along with Shane Tucker and Bobby Burkhart, the other two Grex Luporum team leaders in country. There weren’t a lot of us, and we were in high demand in the States—and there were whispers about new ops in the Western Pacific, though those were extremely hush-hush at the moment—so Shane, Bobby, and I were it for the moment. We were also all understrength. We’d taken losses over the last few months since all this started. None of our ten-man teams were sitting at more than eight bodies. “You made it.” Hartrick’s sardonic tone always sounded like he wasn’t sure if what he was
Chris was on point, about five yards ahead of me, when he suddenly froze and put up a clenched fist. I followed suit instantly. When you’re in hostile territory, you pay attention to what your point man does. While every man in a small team has to be alert at all times, the point man is the team’s eyes and ears. And while we were still on the Polish side of the line, I definitely considered where we were “hostile territory.” Staying in place, I scanned the woods around us carefully. We’d switched night vision in the last month, having gotten a new supply shipment in when the convoys carrying the Army in had arrived. I wasn’t entirely sure about losing the thermal capability, but the clarity and the depth perception the PS-31s provided were a lot better. Unfortunately, even with the better NVGs, I couldn’t see what had prompted Chris to halt. The woods were dark, despite the faint lights from Mamonovo about two and a half miles to the north. We’d picked a new moon on purpose. The PS-31s turned the darkness into pale grays, but they couldn’t show me what I didn’t have a line of sight
I’m still hammering away at Thunder Run, but another SPOTREPS author, James Rosone, has a new book out today: Monroe Doctrine Volume 1. If you’ve been a fan of the Maelstrom Rising Series, you might give it a look, as it follows some similar threads, just down south. Cuba discovers a vast reserve of rare earth minerals… Spies converge on the Caribbean… …In the midst of the chaos, opportunity rises. In the wake of the new Global Depression, the governments of the Caribbean and South America are in free fall—that is, until a benefactor makes them an offer they can’t refuse. Since the 1800s, the US has held to the Monroe Doctrine, which maintains that no foreign nations will be allowed to interfere within the United States’ sphere of influence. However, with America divided and civil unrest spreading across the country, the Chinese see this as their chance. Will China’s AI-Supercomputers outsmart the West? Will they succeed in supplanting the United States? Is the West capable of pulling together one more time or will they go down in history as a group of failed states? China moves in to “save the world.” It’s currently available on Kindle.
So, audio has been a tricky proposition for me. Last year, Tantor Media hit me up about the audio rights for Escalation and Holding Action. This was a big deal, so far as I know, so I jumped at it. Only to be rather let down by the result. Despite what they’d told me, Tantor apparently didn’t do anything to promote the books, so they’ve languished. Which led to silence when I asked about continuing with Crimson Star. Well, if you want something done right, do it yourself. Cody Parcell did the audio for Kill Yuan, and he did a bang-up job of it. So, he and I worked out a deal to get Crimson Star done. It’s taken some time–audio is a lot of work–and the quality control check took a long time, but it’s finally done, and it’s finally up. And Cody is currently working on Strategic Assets (he went the extra mile when it came to Mandarin pronunciations in Kill Yuan, and he’s doing the same with the Polish in Strategic Assets.) They call themselves Soldados de Aztlan. The Mexican cartels have a foothold in Phoenix. Can Hank’s team put down the movement? All around the globe, tensions mount. While Matt’s team heads off to
The U.S. teeters on the precipice… …Chaos reigns, as enemies foreign and domestic circle like sharks. Can any part of the Republic be saved? Hank and his section have been reconstituted in the aftermath of the coastal fighting that has seen many—though not all—of the Chinese invaders beaten back. The plot to control the West Coast ports and a good deal of the infrastructure has failed. But the lights are still off. And desperation is spreading like wildfire. America—what remains of it—has been hurt. Badly. And the Triarii are at the forefront of the efforts to try to stabilize the situation. Because the US will need some kind of stability before the external enemies that have nearly brought it to its knees can be confronted. Fortress Doctrine is in effect. But the Triarii are spread as thin as their allies. Hank will have to adapt quickly to a new form of warfare. And outmaneuver enemies he doesn’t even know exist yet… Some of you are probably already aware, as the Kindle version would have downloaded during the night. But Fortress Doctrine is live today, on Kindle and paperback. Research for this one got into some stuff that I hadn’t done a
The fact that the Triarii trucks were running blacked out probably saved their lives. Most of the stream of fire went high, bullets cracking over Bishop’s head, though a few smacked into the hood, front fender, and frame with earsplitting bangs. Two rounds punched through the windshield, spiderwebbing the glass. A hammer blow hit Reisinger in the helmet. He almost lost control of the vehicle as his head was smacked partway around, throwing his NVGs off. “Fuck!” The bellow was the only way Hank knew that his driver was still alive. He’d heard the impact and seen Reisinger’s head jerk under the blow, but unless they dealt with that belt-fed, they were all dead. Bishop hadn’t waited, but immediately opened fire. The Mk 48 roared for a second, before Reisinger jerked the wheel as he got hit, throwing Bishop’s aim off. Shell casings rattled off the truck’s roof as it swerved hard to the right. Hank reached out to grab the wheel, more afraid of a rollover than getting shot. But Reisinger was still holding onto the wheel, and rapidly getting control again, though he was still swerving toward the right-hand shoulder. He was clearly not happy. “Fuck, fuck, fuck,
It was starting to get chilly as the last of the sunset faded away. Hank Foss didn’t shiver as he walked down toward Overwatch Three, but he could feel the desert chill sinking into his bones. The nearness to the river only accentuated it. It wasn’t near freezing yet, but mid-forties in the desert at night can still sap body heat quickly. Getting old. He had to admit that he wasn’t quite as robust as a retired Gunny as he’d been as a hard-charging Lance Corporal. The cold bit a little more, his knees ached a lot more, and it took more effort to get up, whether in the morning or the middle of the night. But I ain’t dead yet. And there’s still work to be done. The gravel crunched underfoot as he and Huntsman walked down Paul Estevez’s driveway. The Rio Grande river valley was deathly quiet in the winter evening, making the sound of their footsteps strangely loud. Even the wind was barely a whisper. A coyote yipped and howled in the distance, but there was no telling how far away it was in the otherwise unbroken desert silence. The lights were off. Texas had fared somewhat
To: [email protected] From: [email protected] Subject: Current Situation Brief Sir, As requested, I’m including an overview of the last month’s significant events. As you are well aware, the Stateside situation is still volatile, and while we have troops in contact overseas, the information we are getting from Poland is necessarily sparse. As we continue to build our own radio mesh network, that should change, but the Transatlantic gap will still throttle information, simply due to the nature of long-range HF comms. So, the bulk of this report will focus on the CONUS situation. Both coasts and many of the major Midwestern and Southwestern metro areas continue to present significant operational and logistical challenges. While we have eliminated several of the IED cells that had all but brought long-range transport to a halt in many states, we still assess the threat on many major interstates as high. Another truck bomb was detonated on I-5 just south of Tacoma two days ago as of this writing, killing at least fifty people, wounding close to a hundred more, and destroying three semis loaded with food and medical supplies. The IED cells, however, while a significant threat, are not the only factor.
And it’s time for our second release of the month. Strategic Assets went live at midnight. A few people of the paperback persuasion have already ordered it, since the paperback went live several days early. They retook Gdansk… …At a terrible cost for both sides. Where and when will the next blow fall? Winter is setting in, and Eastern Europe is hurting. Russians prowl on one side, while the European Defense Council’s forces sit on the German side of the border, strangely quiet. Matt and his team have recovered from the wounds they received in Gdansk, but as low-intensity warfare continues, the question remains: What is the EDC waiting for? The Triarii are sure that the same people who launched the war aren’t giving up. They’ve already killed thousands. Power is their only goal, and the EDC won’t simply leave the Americans and Poles in peace. They can’t. Too much blood has already been shed. So, Matt and his team get a new mission. Go deep into enemy territory and find out what is happening. Before the next hammer blow ends the war for good… Getting back to Grex Luporum Team X in Europe, this one’s a little different from