Spring, 1981. Vietnam is over, but the repercussions linger. The military strives to recover as society reels from the excesses of the 1970s. A sinister beauty and a dutiful soldier a Hollywood lawyer running from a dirty past and a cast-off vet who seems to have no future dueling drug gangs along the Mexican border and the mutilated remains of a female lieutenant. Stunning, promiscuous, and brilliant at spotting the weaknesses in others, Jessie Lamoureaux may have been killed by a jealous lover, a drug smuggler or a ghost from a life she hoped she had left behind. Was her murderer the Green Beret she betrayed? The captain whose marriage she shattered? The senior officer hoping to save her from herself? A female sergeant fighting for dignity in a man's world? Or a fellow lieutenant with a secret of his own?
In this gritty tale of young men and women torn between the laws of the land and the laws of the heart, a dark journey leads from a moonlit beach in Mexico to mayhem in Iran then back to a country looking for its soul. The Officers Club captures the passions and confusion of the times, the reckoning due after a decade of indulgence and the commitment of those who stayed in uniform through the bad years. As the military and society struggle to right themselves, their conflicts are embodied in the question: Who killed Lieutenant Jessie Lamoureux?
©2010 Ralph Peters (P)2011 Audible, Inc.
Ralph Peters' non-fiction works have all been excellent, but his earlier fiction efforts were good--not great. I chose to download this book just because of the novelty of the setting. I didn't think that even Ralph, who was an MI officer, could capture the peculiar nature of Fort Huachuca. I was wrong. His descriptions of the locales, the attitudes, and the pressures of transient student life are amazing. His characters are credible (both from a literary sense and a real-world sense) and entertaining. He did a near-perfect job of pulling all of the elements of the complicated plot together in the end. I hope that Ralph Peters will continue in his dual-track writing career.
In spite of the title, this is not an Army story. The Army base is just a backdrop for the action. A well conceived story with some unexpected twists. I should have seen the end coming, but didn’t, which is good. Very enjoyable story and well-read.
This book is very well written and read, and while listening I took time out only for bed. The story line is exciting, the charactors well drawn, and an added plus for me was the discription of army life at a small non-wartime base.
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