Wednesday, April 1, 2015

a book about Idaho and fishing and romance with roots in Africa

I think we can all accept as fact that "A" is for Africa.

River and Ranch is one book in a series. I'm starting towards the back of the series because that's how I started out with my set of characters and places. As River and Ranch matured in my head, the back story and where I wanted to go developed. So there's lots more in the past and in the future. But for now Cale and Dana are in Idaho.

Africa is one of those places in the past for Cale and his partner Lane. The bulk of their time in Special Operations Forces was spent on African soil in numerous countries chasing the bad guys. In between missions they were in places like Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti, or Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.

Researching the African part of this plot is fascinating. In reality, the US is very active on the African continent. As is China I might add. Neither of which makes many, if any, media headlines. The largest U.S. military presence is in fact at Camp Lemonnier in Djibouti. There is in fact, another outpost in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. I'm a big fan of geography, so while I had heard of Djibouti and Burkina Faso, I had no idea where they were, and I had not heard of either of the locations.

The U.S. military's pivot into Africa was one of the two the biggest surprise of all though, in doing my research. In reality, there is much going on throughout the African continent, much of it tangentially related to the growing Chinese presence on that continent, but probably more related to the concern over the growing likelihood of terrorist operations taking place in several remote, near lawless locations in the African outback. All of which is perfect back story for the characters in River and Ranch.

Hang tight for that other big surprise uncovered in research. Unfortunately it comes more toward the end of the alphabet, the letter "r", but it is a significant surprise and cornerstone of many plot lines in this series. Truth is indeed stranger than fiction at times.

Tom's Dispatch offers up a great article on this U.S. military activity in Africa.

I hope you will tune in tomorrow for that thrilling letter "B".

1 comment:

  1. Hi there!
    I’m stopping by during the A to Z Challenge. I enjoyed stopping by and hope you get the chance to check out my blog sometime during this month. I’m a children’s book author and I’m reviewing different books. Good luck with the challenge!
    Take care,
    Donna L Martin