Military Thriller With A Quirky and Lovable Hero
In the second of the Matt Rommel Adventure series, the retired Marine and former corrections officer is looking for the peace and quiet his previous employment never provided. Volunteering as a guide at a local museum will, he hopes, be just the thing to give him an outlet that’s not too exciting. But fate (and his own penchant for getting into the middle of things) has other plans, and Rommel is pulled back into an adventure he didn’t see coming. Rommel is again involved with Carolyn, from his last adventure, and with her daughter Aubrey, who he acts as surrogate father to. This time, a figure from his USMC past re-appears and menaces what Matt Rommel cares about. He must solve a mystery and protect what he loves.
This book has a great deal to do with Rommel’s past, both in terms of the mystery/adventure plot line and in terms of the structure of the novel itself. It opens with a flashback to Matt Rommel’s days as a Marine, and we get to know him from another angle and see glimpses of him that we don’t see in the contemporary story. It’s Rommel’s character that makes this book what it is. The story and action are exciting and they present a surprising and engaging mystery, but if it were not for the author’s skill at making the main character come to life, this book would not be the great read that it is. Rommel is complex, multi-faceted and hides much of himself from the outside world. Funny, with a sarcastic, acerbic wit that hides a soft heart and perhaps a damaged psyche, he is accidentally wealthy from an investment but chooses to live in a one room apartment. He is gruff but inside he is a natural protector and lover of humanity. It is this complexity that is so intriguing about Rommel and what makes this book so enjoyable. The story is filled with mysterious, funny and quirky characters but it is Matt Rommel that is the heart and soul of the story line. “Beyond the Law” is classified as military fiction, and will appeal to fans of that genre and to veterans, but it is also a first class thriller for anyone who enjoys action, mystery and most of all an engaging, compelling protagonist.
About the Author
F.M. Kahren is the author of Brand Loyalty, his debut novel and Matt Rommel’s first adventure. A graduate of UC Berkeley with a degree in English, Dr. Kahren also has a masters and doctorate in business administration from the University of North Dakota and Golden Gate University respectively. He has published a number of technical articles for industry journals and is the author of Strategic Planning: The Practices of PCS Companies and the Academic Literature. In addition to serving as a Minuteman missile crew commander and missile operations staff officer, Dr. Kahren has worked extensively in the telecommunications and rail transportation industries. The latter experience allowed him to perform a number of studies in Latin America regarding privatized rail concessions for prospective concessionaires. As he sums it up: “I’ve had some interesting jobs, been fortunate in my friends and family, and managed to educate myself. I’ve traveled the miles and read the books. Now, I want to bring interesting stories to people and entertain them. The Matt Rommel adventures are just such stories. On the lighter side, he was awarded a “Dishonorable Mention” for Vile Puns in the 2007 Bulwer-Lytton contest, a venue in which the purple prose is deliberate. He lives with his family in Northern California.
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