Botched Communication


I want to tell you about an incident at a writers’ conference that was sort of heartbreaking for me. We agents have a lot invested in these conferences, just like the writers do, and sometimes we have disappointments too.

I met with a writer who pitched me a couple of projects. She seemed like someone whose writing was progressing toward possibly ready for publication. I particularly liked one of her projects, and didn’t see as much potential for the other, and I told her so. But I said I’d love to hear from her after the conference, would love her to send me the manuscript so I could read it, and we could discuss the possibility of representation.

The last morning of the conference, she found me and told me that she’d had another agent meeting, the agent had offered representation, and she’d accepted. She said that I’d been her first choice as an agent (although she may have been being kind) but based on the fact that I’d spoken to her about a “one-book contract,” she’d said yes to the other agent who was interested in representing all of her work.

She said (and I’m paraphrasing), “I don’t want an agent to represent just one project, I really want an agent who is interested in representing me as an author. Since you only talked about a single book, I went ahead and accepted representation from the other agent.”

Ugh. A total misunderstanding. I don’t represent books, I represent authors. I didn’t say, “I’m interested in representing one book of yours.” I never uttered the words “one book contract.” I liked one of her books more than the other; not much more was said about it.

If we had been able to talk more and clarify, I could have explained to her that even though I was more interested in one book than the other, if she were to be my client, I would indeed represent her as an author and her entire body of work, not just one book.

Obviously I didn’t communicate clearly. And that’s what’s so disappointing. I know conferences are confusing and overwhelming to writers. There is so much information being tossed around. I know writers don’t always understand everything they’re hearing, although they don’t feel comfortable asking for clarification. I know it’s my responsibility to communicate clearly, especially if I’m hoping to pick up a client.

So the fact that I lost a potential client due to an unfortunate miscommunication was a big disappointment for me.

What can YOU get out of this?

1) Agents are people, too.

2) In a situation where you’re unclear on exactly what’s being said, do your best to clarify before the conversation ends.

3) Perhaps it’s not always the best idea to accept an offer of representation or publication on the spot, and instead spend a bit more time in conversation, asking questions, investigating the agency, determining if you are a fit with that agent… and making sure there aren’t any other offers that need considering.

What did I get out of this?

1) Humbled.

2) A determination to be more clear in my communication.

3) A peaceful acceptance that this woman has found the right fit for her, and it’s okay that it’s not me.

Have you ever lost anything or had repercussions due to miscommunication?


Rachelle Gardner

Literary agent at Gardner Literary. Coffee & wine enthusiast (not at the same time) and dark chocolate connoisseur. I've worked in publishing since 1995 and I love talking about books!


  1. batıkent evden eve nakliyat on October 29, 2019 at 11:47 AM

    Batıkent şehir içi ve şehirler arası nakliyat hizmetleri sunan pek çok farklı firma bulunmaktadır. Bize göre en iyi Batıkent evden eve nakliyat firması bu alanda uzmanlığı ile tanınan ‘dur. Her geçen gün hizmet kalitesini arttıran bu firma, müşteri memnuniyetini oldukça önemsemekte, teslim aldıkları eşyaları, güvenle istenilen adrese teslim etmektedir.

  2. Teresa Wells on October 19, 2019 at 9:16 AM

    Thank you for this post, Rachelle. I appreciate your humility. I met with a magazine editor once who loved what I showed him, and told me he saw three articles coming out of my piece—“know what I mean?” Like a fool, I nodded. I had no idea what that editor meant. Consequently, my attempts never made it to print. Communication is everything.

  3. Nick Vance on October 19, 2019 at 5:09 AM

    My name is Nick Vance and an indy author of four novels with two additional soon to be released. My genre is adventure/suspense loosely based on a Clive Cussler’s style. My question is, are you interested in taking on an indy author. If yes, what is your required protocol. I am enclosing a list of the ISBN’s and a short sample for you to evaluate. If you are unable to represent me, then I sincerely hope you enjoy the brief sample.

    The Ghost Of Tesla’s Folly

    Prologue I
    Colorado Springs—1893

    It was early morning when Nikola Tesla walked into his laboratory and marveled for a few moments at his creation. In a few hours, he will prove to the world that he has developed a way to transmit electricity wirelessly over great distances in order to power homes and factories around the world.
    Located in the center of a huge domed cavern near Colorado Springs, two ten foot tall and six-foot in diameter units sat fifty yards apart. Thirty feet off to the side, two monitoring stations sat surrounded on three sides by a twelve-foot high glass wall impregnated with steel mesh and attached to grounding stakes driven deep into the earth.
    “Mr. Talbert, is everything ready for the test?” Tesla asked as he walked around two of the huge coil devices inspecting every connection and joint in the massive units. “Mr. Talbert, could you come here for a moment?”
    As Talbert approached Tesla, he saw him bent over scrutinizing something, all the while talking to himself.
    “What did you find, Sir?” Talbert asked seeing Tesla wriggling the wires to an electrical connector.
    “Mr. Talbert, this wire nut is not tight enough; if there are any loose connections, even a few, the electricity will arc and melt the connector. If that were to happen…,” Tesla started to say looking at the two units, “if that were to happen, we would all be killed in the massive electrical plasma field that would result.”
    “But, Sir, it looks and feels tight,” Talbert said refuting Tesla’s comment as he closely examined the connector, wriggling the wire himself.
    “I’m sure if you were to use your wrench, you would be able to tighten it a little more. I want every connector checked again, and when you’re finished, I want them re-checked once more. We have to be absolutely positive there are no mistakes.”
    “Yes, Sir. I’ll have my crew inspect everything. You can count on me, Sir.”
    “I would like you to make the final inspection when they’re finished. I’ll be in my office if you need me for anything.”
    Talbert quickly gathered his team together and began firing orders explaining what Tesla had found and what the consequences would be for failure.
    “James, I want you and Peter to remove all the access plates while Renshu and I physically check every connection. Robert, I want you to check everything on the outside—don’t just look at the connections, but physically check the junction. We have to be sure. If there are any mistakes, then we’re all dead men. In that case, I would only hope and pray that they could find enough of our bodies to bury.”
    As the panels came off, both Talbert and Renshu began tightening the nuts finding most were tight, but could be tightened a little more as Tesla said would be the case.
    “If Mr. Tesla is correct,” Talbert explained, “these connectors would have melted when the electricity began to arc and we would all be dead the moment we ran the test. I’ve found that if Mr. Tesla says something, he’s almost always right. Let’s just be glad he caught this before it was too late.”
    “I do hope he realizes that to check all these connections will set his test back at least two days,” Renshu said as he tightened one more nut.
    Talbert looked at Renshu, shrugged his shoulders, and simply said, “He knows. What’s more, you can count on him to recheck every connection himself making sure we did our job correctly.”


    Three days later, Tesla and Talbert sat at a control console behind the one-inch thick plate glass while checking the various gauges and their readouts. Finally, after watching every gauge for a few moments and calculating the normal variation, Tesla sat back in his chair and sighed deeply.
    “Mr. Talbert, it appears as if we’re ready. Everything is within my projected normals and holding,” Tesla said with satisfaction as he inched the dial controlling the power forward–stop by stop.
    Stopping briefly at one percent, both he and Talbert checked the readouts prior to continuing. Once again satisfied that everything was within projected normals, he slowly increased power to five percent whilst once again checking the various gauges for any abnormalities. Taking a deep breath and glancing at Talbert, Tesla increased the power until the gauges indicated ten percent. Plasma immediately began arcing in every direction bringing the offensive smell of strong ozone.
    “Mr. Talbert, what is the temperature of the coils?” Tesla asked with mounting concern.
    Talbert took a quick look at the readout on the dial and tapped the face with his finger a couple of times, replying, “Temperature is 239.4 degrees centigrade, Sir—well within your specifications.”
    “O… kay…,” Tesla said slowly. “Mr. Talbert, let’s take it a little higher,” Tesla said as he began increasing the power to twenty five percent. “How does everything look now on your end?”
    “Looks great, Sir. Temperature has increased only ten degrees.”
    “Good. Let’s increase it to fifty percent.”
    Slowly, Tesla increased the power to fifty percent while Talbert kept a sharp eye on the temperature gauge. At fifty percent, the cavern was awash with tongues of plasma, arcing everywhere. To Talbert’s way of thinking, it looked like something straight from hell.
    Both Tesla and Talbert’s hair stood straight out from their body and their skin felt as if a million ants were crawling over them.
    “Mr. Tesla, is this reaction normal?” Talbert asked nervously as he watched the plasma arcs strike both the walls and the metal mesh protecting them from being incinerated.
    “There is no reason to worry, Mr. Talbert. That steel mesh is attached to copper rods driven ten feet into the ground.”
    “I wish that would make me feel better,” Talbert answered. “What is the percentage of voltage being transferred to the receiving coils?”
    Tesla looked at the dials and smiled. “It looks like we are transmitting twenty-five percent. We’re losing a lot because of the arcing. We have to devise a method to reduce that loss. Once we have solved that problem, our percentage should approach ninety.”
    “Just the fact that you have transmitted any electricity at all is a marvel in itself. You must be proud of your accomplishment, Sir.”
    “Let’s not pat each other on the back yet. I’m going to increase the power to seventy-five and see how much we can increase the transfer,” Tesla said as he slowly turned the dial forward.
    At seventy-five, plasma arcs made constant contact with the mesh forming an almost solid wall of flaming plasma turning the wire mesh a dull red from the intense generated heat.
    “What is the temperature now, Mr. Talbert?” Tesla yelled above the extreme noise.
    “Two hundred and fifty seven degrees, Sir.”
    “Good. Let’s go for full power now.”
    “But the wire mesh can’t take much more. It’s already turning red,” Talbert said above the arcing sounds the plasma was making.
    “It’s alright. Next time we’ll use a heavier gauge. If it looks as if it can’t take any more, we’ll shut down, but we at least have to try,” Tesla said.
    Satisfied with the way the readings were holding, Tesla went to full power.
    Instantly, the wire mesh and the sides of the cavern were awash with a solid sheet of blindingly bright electrical plasma. Within seconds, the wire mesh turned white hot and began to melt and the intense heat cracked the glass plate in front of Talbert crumbling it into dust. The electrical plasma, having no other place to go, struck Talbert the full length of his body instantly turning his clothing into a blazing inferno. Flaming plasma erupted from every orifice while his body convulsed. Suddenly, as Tesla watched in shock and dismay, Talbert’s body evaporated to a pile of dust in front of him.
    Unable to comprehend what was happening, shock and confusion flooded Tesla’s mind. With the grounded wire mesh gone, the electrical plasma had no place to go except to the side of the lab and the second set of coils on the far side of the cavern. Tesla watched the temperature gauge continue to rise and the coils started to turn cherry red with the intense heat. Suddenly Tesla saw what should have been impossible—a strange blue field surrounding the two coils culminating in a violent flash of light. Men, equipment—everything within a fifty-feet radius around the coils disappeared leaving no sign that they ever existed.

    Launch Control—Houston, Texas
    Present Day

    Five…four…three…two…one—lift off. Smoke and fire bellowed out and away from the gantry tower as the giant rocket slowly lifted off its pad rapidly gaining speed. Inside launch control, the launch director, a burly six feet tall, unshaven man, stood intently watching various monitors, chewing on his unlit cigar as he switched it from one side of his mouth to the other. Finally, as the rocket began to clear the gantry tower, he sounded off, “We have ignition and liftoff,” as he continued to watch each stage separate and the next one ignite. Finally, at three hundred miles above the earth, EARS (Electromagnet Anomalies Research Satellite) obtained its obit, ready to do its designers bidding.
    In the VIP observation gallery, a man sat, dressed in a black pinstripe suit, holding a double olive martini, as the rocket, carrying his satellite lifted off the pad and achieved a textbook orbit. Suit wore no expression on his face as he took an occasional sip of his drink and inhaled the smoke from a large Cuban Havana.
    The moment EARS achieved its orbit, Suit took one last drink of his martini, sat his glass down, removed the two olives, and studied them for a long moment before using his teeth to pull them off the toothpick and into his mouth. Picking up his attaché, suit slowly walked away and climbed into a waiting limousine. Almost before the door was closed, the driver pulled out into the flow of traffic and headed for the airport in complete silence. At the airport the driver pulled up to the security gate, flashed the officer his ID and VIP pass before pulling into a large hangar alongside a Lear undergoing preflight and fueling procedures.
    “Is all in ready?” Suit asked the pilot standing rigid at attention next to the boarding ramp.
    “Yes, Sir. In fact we are just finishing up and will be ready to take off for Miami…fifteen minutes ahead of schedule,” the pilot answered checking his watch.


    25.35N 77.12W

    The moment the Lear landed and parked at Miami International, another limousine met the plane and drove Suit to the marina where he then walked swiftly down the dock to a waiting converted eighty-five foot fishing trawler and its captain.
    Saluting, the captain said, “Welcome aboard, Sir. Your cabin is ready.”
    Without speaking a word of acknowledgment, Suit left the captain and went straight to his cabin where he poured himself a drink, opened his attaché case, and began studying his notes before retiring.
    The next morning, Suit woke with a start when he heard knocking on the cabin door.
    “Sir, we’re at the coordinates,” a voice said through the door.
    “Tell the captain I’ll be right there.”
    On the bridge, Suit asked, “Does radar show any other vessels in the area?”
    “No, Sir.”
    “Good. Then, I’m going down to the launch. Wait here for one hour as though you were fishing, then go back to Miami and wait for further orders,” Suit said as he pivoted on his heels and left the bridge for the launch pool located in the bottom of the boat.
    Standing at the edge of the pool, Suit scrutinized the final preparations for the launching of the submersible when he was approached by a technician and informed, “Everything is ready, Sir. If you don’t mind, we have to get on board if we are to meet your schedule.”
    “Very well,” was all Suit said as he followed the tech and found his seat for the dive to the control center one-hundred and fifty feet below the surface.


    “Mr. Tesla, welcome,” Dr. Reinhold said shaking his hand.
    “Dr., is Sophia here?” Tesla asked looking around.
    “Yes. She’s in the control room making some final preparations for the test. She said to extend her apologies for not being able to meet you, but she had some important calibrations to do before you arrived and asked if you’d meet her there.”
    As soon as Tesla entered the control room, he saw an attractive dark haired figure leaning over a console entering commands into her computer. His sudden appearance startled her as she swung around and let out an audible gasp before throwing her arms around him.
    “Jon, you scared the shit out of me coming up behind me like that!”
    Tesla reached out both arms and pulled her to him whispering into her ear, “I wish you would call me Dad. It doesn’t sound right to call me by my given name.”
    “You’re the one who said we had to keep family out of our work,” Sophia whispered back.
    Sophia Tesla, a five foot-seven, long dark haired graduate of MIT, with a doctorate in theoretical physics, began working with her father, Jon, the grandson of Nikola Tesla, in developing her grandfather’s work in electromagnetic pulse research.
    “I know you’re right, but it still doesn’t stop me from wishing it.”
    “After our mission is complete, I will—I promise.”
    Tesla looked at his daughter and smiled a rare smile. “Good. Where are we on our project?”
    “All calibrations are set and entered into the system. We are waiting only for your go ahead for the test,” Sophia said without emotion.
    Tesla nodded his head, walked up to the control panel, studied the various readouts for a few seconds, and simply said, “You have done well Sophia. Activate EARS and move it into final position. When you are ready, call me. I’ll be in my office going over a few last minute calculations.”
    “It will only take an hour to position EARS; by then I will have the last of the inputs programmed. We will then prove that grandfather’s idea was good. They should not have ridiculed him the way they did,” Sophia said angrily.
    Later, Tesla sat at the controls beside Sophia and said, after checking the controls one final time, “Now we will know the brilliance of Nikola Tesla,” as he pushed a single button on the console.
    Far out in space, EARS slowly began deploying four solar collectors, each half the size of a football field to collect enough power to light up a small city. Tesla watched the indicator bar begin changing from red to green as the solar panels extended themselves to full open.
    With all indicators showing ready and the power level increasing to one-hundred percent, Tesla looked at Sophia and said, “Now is the time,” as he pushed the fire button.
    Receiving the fire command, EARS immediately began charging its capacitor banks to their maximum in preparation to give a directed beam of an intense electromagnetic pulse at its target far below.
    On all four sides of the pulse cannon sat four very large, very powerful, electro magnets confining the pulse to a very narrow beam of intense energy. Suddenly, with the capacitors’ banks fully charged, a reddish beam streamed its way earthwards to the Oroville Dam in California.
    For just a brief moment, the dam glowed a dull red in color and seemed to vibrate slightly with a strange bluish aura around it. In less than a second, the entire dam exploded outward disappearing in a flurry of fine particles leaving nothing but the spillway intact. With nothing holding the water back, a solid wall of over seven hundred feet of destruction began rolling outward, crushing the substation and generating plant beneath tens of thousands of tons of water. Eleven million cubic yards of water created a tsunami like wave five-hundred feet high, crashing its way through the canyon toward the town of Oroville filled with local shoppers and tourists enjoying a Saturday sidewalk sale day and a local bank playing in the center of the square.
    “Daddy, why is the ground shaking?” a small girl asked.
    “It’s just a small earthquake,” he answered. “We have nothing to fear,” he continued until his daughter yelled out, loud enough for other shoppers nearby to hear.
    “Daddy! Look! What is that?” the young girl yelled.
    Her father looked to where she was pointing and stared un-comprehending for a moment at a solid wall of water rushing toward them like a freight train. As the wave hit the first building on the outskirts of town, the structure exploded as though filled with dynamite.
    Nearby, a man yelled out, “Run!”
    A woman, recognizing the rapidly approaching danger, screamed as she turned to run for safety.
    One by one, buildings exploded as the giant wave struck them sparing nothing that stood in its path.
    Finally, the man also recognizing the danger, grabbed his daughter under his arm and began running, followed by several people, toward a concrete and brick structure. The wave was now one hundred yards behind him when he reached the building and ran up five steps and crashed through the locked door. As the man and his daughter dove to the floor, he could hear the screams of people right behind him being swept away. The man immediately threw himself against the wall and held his hand over his daughter’s mouth and nose. As the wave hit the building, it blew out all the windows and filled the room with water. For almost a full minute, the room was under water but with the wave out of the canyon, it began to dissipate rapidly.
    The water level dropped to a point where the man’s head popped out of the water as he raised his daughter’s head high.
    “Allie, are you ok?” the man asked urgently only to find she was not breathing as he let out a haunting wail.
    Quickly he began breathing into her mouth and pressing on her small chest. On the third try, Allie spit out a lung full of water and began crying. Picking her up in his arms, he hugged her so hard, he was afraid he had broken a rib.
    Outside, they saw that all the wooden structures were destroyed. The town was gone and so were the hundreds of people enjoying the day shopping the numerous sales.

    Chapter 2
    Ninety-three miles from Miami
    On the Bahama Queen

    Turner and Holly stepped out from their stateroom into a perfect day. Without any clouds, the heat from the mid-day sun warmed their faces as the Bahama Queen pushed its way through a glassy smooth sea leaving a frothy white trail behind her.
    Jack Turner grew up in Hawthorn, NY, along with his best friend, Bob Anderson. Both men lived on the same street and attended the same elementary and high school and upon graduation, Anderson went on to attend college to study criminology while Turner attended the Naval Academy. Throughout college, both Anderson and Turner kept in close contact visiting each other whenever they could. Following his graduation, Anderson joined the Navy as a commissioned officer and, by sheer chance, both men entered Seal training and served together in the Med. With their discharge from the military, Anderson went into law enforcement in New York City eventually becoming the youngest Police Commissioner in the city’s history while Turner became a private detective. With the death of his uncle, Ed Turner, Jack was left with a hundred and fifty million dollar inheritance and the controlling interest in a prosperous Silicon Valley business. It was during this period that both men lost contact with each other in the pursuit of their individual careers. By a strange quirk of fate, both men reconnected and became involved with an ultra secret government agency by the name of Wildfire.
    During a murder investigation, Turner met Holly Cavanaugh, a graduate of Michigan State with a Masters Degree in electronic communications. Unfortunately, jobs with her particular expertise were hard to find forcing her to take a temporary job as a waitress/dancer at an exotic nightclub called the Café Les Femmes until the right job offer came along. One night while Holly was waiting on a table, she overheard a conversation between two of Raymond Cappella’s lieutenants concerning the murder of Eve Devoe—a case Turner was working on. After the Devoe case was closed, Turner had Holly recruited into Wildfire as a trainee during which time the two of them began an on again/ off again affair but, because of their type of work, they were unable to take it to the next level.
    “Where would you like to sit?” Turner asked Holly while watching a couple of newlyweds embrace each other.
    “How about the foredeck? That way we can feel a breeze in our face like on the movie Titanic,” Holly eagerly replied.
    At that moment, Turner stopped a steward who was approaching and asked, “Would it be possible to have someone bring us a bottle of your finest champagne to the foredeck?”
    “Not a problem, Mr. Turner; ten minutes alright?”
    “That would be perfect,” Turner replied.
    “Could you also include some of those delicious cheese and crackers we had for lunch? I’m not sure what kind of cheese was used but they were very good,” Holly remarked just as a puff of wind blew her hair forward encircling her face.
    “I’ll make certain you will have both, Miss Cavanaugh,” the steward quickly answered.
    As he began to leave, Turner stopped him and handed him a twenty. “For your trouble…,” Turner started to say but stopped when he realized he didn’t’ know the steward’s name.
    Seeing his discomfort, the steward interrupted and said, “Jim.”
    “Thank you, Jim,” Turner finished shaking his hand.
    On the foredeck, Turner immediately found two lounge chairs and, bowed deeply waving his arms toward the seat.
    “M’lady, thy chaise awaits.”
    Grinning, Holly looked at Turner and his gesture and replied, “Why thank you dear Sir. I’d offer you a tip but the only one I have is Marybell in the sixth.”
    “I’ll remember that when we get back,” Turner said as they both sat down.
    Turner opened his paper and tried to read but with the liner moving at nineteen knots, it was nearly impossible with the wind.
    “I think maybe we should have picked the port…,” Turner started to say but broke off when he saw Wildfire’s green and yellow Sikorsky heading toward them flying so low he was sure someone was dipping their feet in the warm Caribbean waters.
    “I have a feeling our vacation just got cut short,” Turner said getting up and slipping his sweats on over his swim trunks.
    As the Sikorsky circled the ship waiting for clearance to land, Holly and Turner rushed to the helipad above the pilothouse crashing through the entrance just as the Sikorsky touched down with Anderson bounding out to where Turner was standing.
    “Jack, Holly, grab your gear. We’ve been ordered to attend an urgent meeting in Wildfire by President McGuiness. She’s setting up an emergency meeting with all the department heads in…,” Anderson said looking at his watch, “in five hours from now.”
    “What’s happened?” Holly asked as they headed for their stateroom.
    “I don’t know for sure, but I’ve heard it has something to do with a dam in California by the name of Oroville. Whatever it is, it has everyone up tight—big time. In fact, if we can’t do something about it, she’s going to pull in the National Guard it’s so big. Whatever it is that’s going down, it’s enough to get the President extremely worried.”
    “Where is this Oroville dam?” Turner asked.
    “I don’t know. I can’t even say for sure it has anything to do with that dam. I only know I heard them talking about it at Wildfire. The way they were talking, I’d be willing to bet my left nut that that’s the problem.”
    The moment the Sikorsky touched down in Pensacola, Lieutenant Colonel Travis met the trio on the tarmac.
    “Captain Turner!” Travis said walking straight to him.
    “Yes, Colonel, I’m Turner.”
    “May I see your identifications please?”
    All three handed Travis their ID and watched as he looked at their photo then back at each of them in turn before returning the IDs and saluting. Travis then gestured with his hand for them to get into a jeep and rushed away through a maze of tunnels beneath the base to a waiting underwater mag lift and the ride to Wildfire.
    Wildfire, the code name for a three-story complex built deep beneath a small coconut palm covered island in Shell Island Lake, is located just off the coast of Louisiana. The existence of Wildfire, classified above black, is known only to a very select few in the government that includes the President, but not the Vice President, the Joint Chiefs, and the President’s own Cabinet. From the air, the island looks like any other, except this one has a good size hill covered with palm trees concealing a twenty-foot satellite uplink keeping the complex in constant contact with STARS (Strategic Tracking And Recon Satellite).
    STARS, designed by Erwin Tuttle and built by GEOTEC, is an ultra secret probe, so sensitive, it is able to detect the heat source from a lit cigarette to a tin can lid buried underground from deep space. At the age of fifteen, Tuttle graduated from MIT with his doctorate in computer engineering. By the time he turned twenty-two and in the middle of his dissertation for his forth doctorate, General Backus, the temporary Commander of Wildfire, discovered and recruited him to design STARS for a new black governmental agency called Wildfire. In designing STARS, Tuttle included a state of the art nuclear propulsion system enabling STARS to move to any point above the Earth. To protect itself from hostile aggression, STARS was also designed with two 5000-watt lasers giving it the ability to destroy any target that threatens it from Earth, or orbit. STARS was originally the second of two telecommunications satellites launched from the Cape. The first satellite was intended to replace an old, outdated communication dinosaur.
    The second satellite, STARS, code named SAT3D, was hyped to the press as being the first telecommunications satellite capable of handling the new 3D TV programming. With the new 3D TV format becoming so popular, SAT3D would be capable of handling the new format and cell phone communication networks for the next twenty years.
    Tuttle programmed SAT3D to send a false message back to launch control five minutes after achieving orbit indicating to launch control it was beginning to lose altitude and would have to be destroyed before it crashed back to Earth. If the orbital degradation continued unchecked, the crash point would be New York City with the death of hundreds, possibly thousands, of innocent people. Once the self-destruct command was sent, all communication with SAT3D ceased and a new designation STARS began, giving launch control the indication that the self-destruction was successful. With the black, radar-absorbing panels covering STARS, any detection by a land based radar system or satellite in orbit, as well as any visual apparatus, only served to prove the satellite was indeed destroyed allowing STARS to operate in total secrecy.
    Twenty-four hours after NASA’s apparent destruction of SAT3D, its control was transferred to Wildfire. Once Wildfire obtained operational control, it positioned STARS in a geo-synchronous orbit above Wildfire Control. After two weeks of intensive work and testing, STARS was finally ready to show off its full capability.
    “Colonel,” Turner asked, “can you enlighten me as to what’s going on?”
    “No, Sir. You will be apprised of the situation in a meeting with the President scheduled for 0900 tomorrow morning in the War Room.”
    “Thanks, Colonel. We will endeavor to be there on time,” Turner said jokingly.


    Inside the War Room, the atmosphere was unnervingly quiet as everyone sat with his own thoughts of the previous evening’s catastrophe in California.
    “Good morning everyone,” President McGuiness said as she entered the room dressed in her customary dark navy blue slacks with white blouse and two inch heels. Around her neck, she had chosen a simple silver locket that hung toward her cleavage but just high enough to be in good taste.
    President Rita McGuiness, a fiery Irish redhead, hailed from the state of New York where she obtained the reputation of a politician who was not afraid to confront someone to defend her position—no matter the outcome. Growing up in Deli, a relatively small town northwest of New York City, she became a member of the city council and obtained the reputation of being an extraordinarily honest councilperson. As her reputation grew, so did her political base until she became New York State’s first woman governor. Completing two terms as governor, the Democratic Party asked her to run for President. Far beyond anyone’s expectations, her campaign snowballed and on Election Day, Rita had won in a landslide victory over the incumbent, winning over seventy percent of the votes in the Electoral College and becoming the nation’s first woman President.
    President McGuiness carried herself with dignity and authority as she walked to the head of the conference table where she leaned against the back of her chair and began to speak to the team when she suddenly had to turn around to hide her emotions.
    Quickly recovering her composure and turning back around, she began to address her team. “I apologize for my show of emotion. As most of you have heard, late yesterday evening, the Oroville Dam was destroyed. It is estimated that eleven-hundred people are missing. At this time we have no clue as to their fate.”
    “Madam President, isn’t Oroville where your sister-in-law lives?” Admiral Jackson broke in, then turning his head, groaning inwardly at his tactless comment.
    President McGuiness looked at Jackson, fighting to keep her emotions in check and sensing his discomfort, calmly said, “It’s alright Admiral, I understand. To answer your question, yes. She, my brother, and two children live there and, to answer the question that is in the back of your mind—I don’t know if they’re all right or not. Now back to the subject at hand. Captain Turner, I would like you to spearhead the investigation as the how and why this happened. The report we are getting from witnesses is that the dam seemed to disappear before their eyes. I have to know if this is a terrorist attack and, if it is, who is responsible.”
    What about Homeland Security?” Turner asked. “Wouldn’t they have jurisdiction?”
    “I will have a meeting with Jeffery Wood at Homeland Security. He will be running his own investigation. Since this tragedy is public knowledge, I cannot keep him out of the loop. However, since he answers to me, whatever he discovers will be passed on to you. Your cover will be that you and your team are on site helping with the rescue effort. Mr. Tuttle, I want you to position STARS directly over Oroville and scan the entire area for any life and any hint of a footprint left by the explosion.
    Turning to Dr. Winfred Frank, President McGuiness said, “Dr. Frank, I need the CDC to investigate any health repercussions that will occur as a result of the flooding.”
    Dr. Winfred Frank, the director of the CDC in Atlanta, became involved with Wildfire when several deaths involving radiation poisoning were discovered spanning several states as a result of terrorists’ threats to detonate two dirty bombs and irradiating a massive portion of the United States. Dr. Frank’s parents, wanting a boy, named her Winfred instead of Winifred prompting her to go by the name Winnie. An honors graduate of Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, Dr. Frank ran her own successful practice for ten years while obtaining two additional degrees—one in concentrated studies in communicable diseases and a second in environmental biochemistry. Upon completion of her additional degrees, Dr. Frank was asked to take the reins of the CDC in Atlanta after the former CDC director, Samantha Vandegraph make a bad judgment call resulting in the death of twenty-eight people, thereby forcing her to resign.
    “Now, are there any questions?”
    “Madam President,” Turner asked, “are there any terrorists groups claiming responsibility?”
    “Not at this time, Captain.”
    Admiral Jackson then asked, “Does anyone have an idea what type of explosive was used?”
    “As of this moment, no one has any idea. The news media is saying the dam just seemed to fall apart or dissolve, if you will, while others say it blew apart.”
    “How big was this dam?” Jackson continued.
    “The dam is, was, 770 feet high and held back 7.7 million cubic yards of water on the Feather River. The dam also had three turbines with an annual 2,200 gwh of power, which is going to put a damper on the power usage for that entire region. Gentlemen, I need answers. The news media is screaming for my resignation saying I failed to protect the people. Some of the radio commentators are even saying that a woman should never be President because they are too busy saying, pardon the expression, too busy with the curse or menopause to manage the highest office in the country. Anyway, it all comes down to the fact that I need your help in the worst way. We have to find the reason for this disaster, and who caused it.”
    Placing her notes back into a manila folder, President McGuiness stepped back and waited for any further questions. Hearing none, she looked at Turner and asked, “Captain Turner, could I see you and Admiral Jackson in my office after you and your team go over your strategies?”

    Wildfire’s Presidential Office

    In her office, President McGuiness went straight to a large coffee urn, poured herself a cup of coffee, and began going over a stack of reports lying on her desk. After reading several of the reports, her secretary poked her head in and said, “Captain Turner and Admiral Jackson are here to see you.”
    “Please send them in.”
    “Madam President,” Jackson said as he entered the office followed by Turner. “You wanted to see us?”
    “Yes, please have a seat,” President McGuiness said as she got up and began pouring two cups of coffee.
    “Madam President, we can pour our own coffee,” Turner said, getting up when he saw what she was doing.
    “Nonsense,” she insisted. “I don’t mind doing things for my friends.” Handing both men their cup, she told Turner, “Now, sit back down Captain,” and then placed a small tray of glazed donuts on the coffee table in front of them.
    “Admiral, I want you and Captain Turner to head up this investigation. You have never let me down ever since we began Wildfire and I can’t help believing you won’t fail me this time,” President McGuiness said as she leaned forward in her chair while holding her own cup of coffee.
    “But, Madam President, what about Homeland Security?” Turner asked again.
    “You can’t kill them,” was all she said as she took a sip of coffee before continuing. “There are only two known witnesses and they are being protected from the news media for as long as possible. Captain, I want you and Commander Anderson to fly out there, speak with them, and try to make some sense out of this. The full power of this office will be at your disposal. Please, Jack, I’m counting on you.”
    “Putting it that way, Madam President, there’s no way in hell we’d ever let you down!”


    In the conference room a short distance from the War Room, Turner met with Holly, Anderson, and Tuttle.
    “Guys, we’ve been asked by President McGuiness to personally investigate the dam’s collapse.”
    “I thought she said Homeland Security was going to handle it? How are we going to get around them?” Holly asked.
    “As President McGuiness said when I asked that very question, ‘we can’t kill them’. All we can do is act as if we’re search and rescue. Erwin, before you fly out there, I want you to scan the entire area including the town, or what’s left of it. Try to analyze the destruction and scan for anyone alive. We’ll locate the dead later. Try to determine exactly where the explosion would have been placed based on the pattern of debris.”
    “Normally, analyzing the blast area wouldn’t be a problem,” Tuttle said, “but in this case, however, it’s going to be damn near impossible. With that much water pressure blasting across an earth embankment dam, the debris and most of the evidence, more than likely, would have been washed away.”
    “All you can do is your best under the circumstances. We may just get lucky with whatever’s left,” Turner said sounding hopeful.
    “I’ll run every imaging scan available so we can compare the results with what’s actually left there.”
    “Holly, can you give Erwin a hand with all the preliminary work he has to do? His plate is going to be overflowing when your scan results are complete. When you’re finished, email your results and meet us out there. Bob, you and I are going to take a trip to Navajo Land and look up Tahoma and Niyol. With their uncanny tracking and observational skills, they would be a hell of an asset to us.”
    “That’s not a bad idea. They were a great help in finding that lost South American treasure. Besides, they’re a couple of all right guys once you get through their accent,” Anderson said agreeing with his friend.
    “I’ll ask the Admiral to call ahead and get in touch with Tahoma and Niyol and meet us at Window Rock. From there we can catch a flight out from Phoenix to Sacramento.
    “How far is the drive to Oroville from there?” Anderson asked as they headed back to the mag lift for Pensacola.
    “I think it’s only an hour or so.”

    Wildfire’s control center

    “Holly, take a look at these images,” Tuttle said as he held a magnifying glass over two photos. As he looked, he pointed to a wide section that used to be the dam.
    “This is where the dam was before it was destroyed. But…,” Tuttle paused while he found the second photo, “This close-up of the area shows no real debris as you would normally expect from an explosion. The dam is of the earthen type composed of rocks and boulders, and I’m speaking of boulders weighing in at three, four, and even five tons. Now, if there was an explosion, some of these boulders should be visible, but all I can make out is an empty area—no rocks, no debris, nothing. Something happened that I just can’t explain, at least not right now. None of this makes any sense,” Tuttle said as he continued to lay out the various photos on the table, shaking his head.
    Tuttle straightened up and turned his back toward the photos as he thought. “There has to be a pattern. Holly, let’s re-photograph the area again only this time set the magnification to maximum. Let’s also scan for any explosive residue one mile downstream from the dam.”
    Thirty minutes later, both Holly and Tuttle re-examined the photos and the scans only to become more exasperated.
    “This is impossible. The only debris we have is a pile of sand and no indication of any explosive residue. There’s nothing I can think of that can….”
    Stopping for a moment, Tuttle sat up poker straight and began typing a query in the massive super computer he nicknamed, IRMA (Informational Recovery Management Algorithm).
    “If I’m right, we should have a possible explanation in a few minutes.”
    “What do you think it is?” Holly asked as she again looked at the photos.
    “I’ll tell you in a moment,” Tuttle said as IRMA began spitting out reams of data.
    “We have got to get hold of the Admiral and Jack,” Tuttle said urgently. “I don’t believe the dam was physically blown up.”
    “If it wasn’t blown up, what did happen?” Holly asked.
    “In the late nineteen-hundreds, Nikola Tesla was working with electromagnetic theorems and I think this is directly related to his work.”
    “I know a little of Tesla. He’s the one who developed the Tesla coil and did extensive research on magnetic pulse research. That can’t have anything to do with the destruction of the dam. The most a pulse would do is to wipe out a computer’s memory.”
    “True, but under the right circumstance, that energy, if it could become focused, could become a very powerful and destructive weapon if it ended up in the wrong hands. That destructive force could also be transmitted over a great distance.”
    “And you think that’s what happened here?” Holly asked looking at the photos again.
    “I believe so. I won’t know for sure until we get out there and run some specific tests.”

    Chapter 4

    The Navajo Nation Police Agency
    Window Rock, Navajo Land

    Walking through the doors of the Navajo Nation’s Police Agency, Turner and Anderson were both greeted with a vigorous hand shaking by Tahoma.
    “Jack, it’s good to see you. Admiral Jackson gave me a heads up that you were on your way here. He wouldn’t give me much information, only that you needed us on a critical job.”
    “We need your help all right—specifically, your uncanny skills in observation and tracking. I don’t know how you do it, but you see things the best of us miss.”
    “As one of your famous TV detectives would say, ‘It’s a gift and a curse’.”
    “That’s why we need your help,” Turner said as Niyol came up to shake hands.
    “Jack, welcome to Navajo Land. You have to eat with us tonight,” Niyol said slapping Turner on the back.
    “I only wish we could, but we can’t. Do you have a secure place where we can talk?” Turner asked looking around.
    “This way,” Tahoma said leading the way down a hallway to an interrogation room. “Don’t worry, all the monitoring equipment has been turned off, and the walls are sound proof.”
    Inside the room, Turner slid five photos across the table, sat back in his chair, and waited while Niyol and Tahoma examined the photos.
    “These are some of the photos Tuttle emailed me of a dam that was destroyed in California.”
    “What was this dam made from?” Niyol asked examining one photo in particular with a magnifying glass.
    “It was an earthen dam with a substrate composed of rocks and boulders—some of which, I’m told, weighed in at around one to two tons or more.”
    Both Niyol and Tahoma looked up in astonishment. “You have got to be kidding! There’s nothing left. This one photo alone shows a lot of sand and gravel and nothing more. Now, that much water pressure could possibly move boulders downstream a short distance, but they’d end up somewhere in one of these photos!” Tahoma said looking at one photo in particular and showing it to Turner. “This one photo alone shows that the boulders are not downstream. There’s no way they could have been blasted into gravel. Someone is pulling your chain when they’re telling you what the dam’s composition was.”
    “That’s what we thought also until we received confirmation from the Army Corps of Engineers that the report was correct,” Turner said holding one of the photos. “We need to find out what kind of explosive could do this and that’s where you two come in.”
    “We have never seen a pattern like this, let alone rocks of the size you are telling us, being reduced to gravel and sand,” Niyol said looking at Tahoma then back to Turner.
    “That’s why we need you to come with us and physically see the destruction. How long will it take you to get ready?” Turner asked.
    “About as long as it takes to go to our lockers and get our bags. We keep everything ready just in case something like this comes up.”
    “Great, then let’s go. We have a plane already chartered at the airport. We’ll meet Holly and Tuttle at a hotel a short distance from Oroville. We should be at the hotel around 1900 hours or so tonight, check into the hotel and get some rest. We can survey the place tomorrow morning as soon as it’s daylight.”
    The next morning, Turner was awakened with someone banging on the door at 0600. “Can you come back later to make up the room?” Turner called out.
    “I could but I don’t think that’s in my job description,” came a familiar feminine voice.
    “Holly?” Turner called out, jumping out of the bed and throwing a pillow at Anderson. “Just a minute. Give Bob and me a chance to put our pants on.”
    When Turner opened the door, there stood both Holly and Tuttle grinning like the proverbial cat that ate the mouse with Tahoma and Niyol standing behind them.
    “When did you two get in?”
    Holly glanced at Tuttle and casually said, “It was around three this morning, wasn’t it Erwin?”
    “Yeah, it was around there somewhere. We were told at the front desk what rooms you were in and since your light was out and Tahoma’s was on, we decided to give you a little extra sleep,” Tuttle said shrugging his shoulders.
    “We bring heap big breakfast and strong coffee,” Niyol said in a strong TV style Indian accent.
    “Me have no wampum,” Turner answered back.
    “Trust me, Jack, you do not even begin to do Tonto justice,” Niyol said laughing.
    “Well, it was worth the try.”
    “I thought breakfast and coffee might take care of the cranky mood you’re in every morning—before your coffee that is,” Tuttle said after the laughter died down.
    “Me, cranky? I never get cranky,” Turner said smiling at Tuttle’s barb.
    “Bullshit,” Tuttle said holding back a laugh. “You’re like a mama bear waking up after winter hibernation—impossible to deal with until you get your morning caffeine.”
    Both Tahoma and Niyol began to belly laugh. Finally, when they were able to stop, both men had to say, “We’ve both heard the same thing, except not a mama bear, but a chupacabra.”
    “Ok…ok. So maybe I am a little irritable,” Turner finally said taking a large drink of coffee then quickly grabbing a glass of cold water from the end table to put out the fire.
    “Oh, I forgot to tell you…it’s very hot,” Tuttle said holding back a laugh.
    “Ok, you two, drink your coffee and eat your breakfast while I peel the skin off the roof of my mouth. When you’re finished, I’ll drive us to the dam.”
    Approaching the site, which appeared to be ground zero, Turner stopped the car allowing everyone to exit. No one could believe the destruction as they stared open mouthed. The closer they came to what appeared to be ground zero, the more complete the destruction.
    “Son…of…a…bitch,” Anderson said overwhelmed with the destruction of the dam.
    “What the hell would cause this type of destruction? It’s almost as if the dam never existed. There should be something of the dam left but I see nothing left…not even a rock larger than a baseball.”
    “We need to get closer to where the town used to be if we’re going to find anything useful,” Tuttle said slowly as he shaded his eyes from the early morning sun.
    Tahoma was the first to speak as he got back into the car.
    “This was no bomb. Even with the sudden rush of water, there should be something here…especially if these boulders were one and two ton each. It would be impossible for something that big to get washed away…at least not far.”
    On the outskirts of the town, the cement slabs were the only visible indication there even was a town with stores and shoppers.
    As they drove further, Tuttle, with his head and shoulders hanging out the window, suddenly yelled, “Stop!”
    Turner instantly hit the brakes and asked, “What’d you see?”
    “Not sure. Back up a little.”
    Turner backed up ten feet when Tuttle bolted out of the car and ran to a mound of debris before the car had fully stopped moving. Kneeling down on one knee, Tuttle inspected what appeared to be a piece of metal filled with holes.
    “What is it?” Holly asked.
    “It was once a sheet of corrugated metal—the kind you’d expect to find on the side of a building.”
    Tuttle saw Holly carrying her clipboard with some papers held together with paper clips.
    “Want to see something very strange? Hand me some of those paperclips.”
    Tuttle reached over, took the paperclips, and proceeded to toss them toward the corrugated metal. Immediately, the paperclips flew to the metal and stuck there.
    “It’s magnetized,” Turner said surprised. “What do you suppose caused that?”
    “I have a theory, but I want to see more debris before I stick my foot in my mouth.”
    “Ok, but don’t make us wait too long,” Turner said as they all started to walk toward where the center of the town used to be. The only buildings still standing were those of concrete and brick.
    “Jack,” Tahoma said as he and Niyol examined the area. “There is no way one ton boulders, let alone two ton, disintegrate like this with the use of an explosive device. Not even the water pressure could do it.”
    “A nuclear blast might do the job but the sand would be congealed into glass from the intense heat. As you can see, that’s not the case here,” Niyol interjected.
    Both Tahoma and Niyol are right,” Tuttle said. “This was not caused by an explosive device or anything in nature. Look around, everything is gone. I would venture a guess this was the center focal point of something very powerful. As you expand out from here, the debris gets larger. What’s more, that magnetized metal I found could not have happened with the use of explosives. I believe we are dealing with a new type of weapon.”
    Tahoma reached down, grabbed a handful of the sand, and studied it.
    “Mr. Tuttle, could you come here?”
    Tuttle slowly walked to Tahoma’s side and knelt down on one knee watching him study the sand.
    “I know what you’re going to say,” Tuttle said. “That sand doesn’t look right; it’s too coarse.”
    Tahoma looked at Tuttle with admiration and finally said, “You’re right. We see through the same eyes. This sand was once the big boulders.”
    “Jack was right. You are very intelligent and observant. It’s no wonder he wanted you here.”
    Turner walked up to the two of them and asked Tahoma if he and Niyol would search the area for something useful.
    “Jack,” Tuttle said, “Tahoma and I have already discovered all we need to know. This was no explosion. Before Holly and I left Wildfire, I had the computer do a search and I think I’ve found the answer: This destruction was achieved through the use of a very powerful and focused magnetic pulse—one so strong it broke the molecular bonds that held everything together.”
    “That sounds like something from a sci-fi magazine,” Holly broke in.
    “The concept is actually over a hundred years old, dating back to the eighteen hundreds,” Tuttle explained.
    “You’re kidding,” Holly said.
    “No, not hardly. In the late eighteen hundreds, Tesla was developing wireless transfer of electricity, when his lab was destroyed—much in the same way this dam was.”
    “What would be the range of such a weapon?” Turner asked.
    “I can’t answer that. All I know is the Navy was working on just such a weapon but the size proved to be prohibitive. It’s just too damn big—that plus the fact it draws a tremendous amount of power. The further from the target, the more power it draws.”
    “Then it follows that it would take a large, and I mean large, generator and a relatively close proximity to the target to be effective,” Turner said looking toward the surrounding hills.
    “If you could even find a power source large enough,” Tuttle explained.
    Turner looked at Tuttle and then at the canyon’s walls on both sides of the dam site.
    “Niyol, could you and Tahoma scout around on those hills for any signs. If they did use a large generator, then there should be some telltale indications on one side or the other.”
    “We’ll get on it right away, Jack,” Niyol said looking at his watch. “It’s about nine, so…we should have something for you by this evening.”
    “That is if there is anything there,” Turner added. “While you two are searching the surrounding area, I’m going to have a talk with the two survivors,” Turner said looking to where a temporary shelter had been set up.
    “Ok,” Anderson said. “While you’re doing that, we’re going to see what we can find around here.”
    Turner drove toward the tent and showed the guard his ID informing him he needed to speak with the two survivors.
    “I’m sorry, Sir. I can’t let you pass. I have orders from Homeland Security not to let anyone interrogate these people.”
    “That’s alright, Sergeant. Please, call this number for me,” Turner said handing him a blank card except for a number printed on it.
    Taking the card and eyeing Turner suspiciously, the sergeant called the number. After two rings, a man’s voice came on. “Yes.”
    “I…I have a Captain Turner here who said to call this number. Can you…”
    “Hold on,” the voice interrupted.
    The sergeant was about to say something when he heard a click and was put on hold. A few moments later, a feminine voice came on the line and asked, “To whom am I speaking?”
    “Sergeant Blackwell ma’am. I have a Captain Turner here wanting…”
    “Sergeant, do you know who you called?”
    “No, ma’am, I don’t.”
    “I am Rita McGuiness, President, and your commander.”
    “Ye…yes, Madam President. I didn’t know.”
    “Sergeant, you are to give any and all assistance Captain Turner requests of you. Is that clear?”
    “Yes, but what about Homeland Security? They said not to let anyone speak to the survivors.”
    “Sergeant, I am authorizing Captain Turner complete access to the Oroville site, overriding anything Homeland Security may have told you.”
    “Yes, Madam President. I’ll see to it immediately.”
    “Thank you Sergeant,” President McGuiness said as she hung up.
    A stunned sergeant turned back toward Turner, handed him his ID and said, “Sorry Captain. I guess I have new orders. Anything you need, let me know.”
    “Thank you, Sergeant. Keep everyone away while I speak with the survivors,” Turner said returning the sergeant’s salute.
    “Yes, Sir—will do.”
    Inside, Turner found the two witnesses but was surprised that one was a small girl of about seven or eight. The father was sitting on a cot while the girl was playing with her doll.
    “I’m Captain Turner. I’m here on behalf of the President to go over with you what happened.”
    “Mine’s Gene Waterman and my daughter’s name is Allie. I just spoke with some men a couple of hours ago,” Waterman explained.
    “I know. What I’m doing is a follow up investigation.”
    “About all I know is what I told the other people. One minute the dam was there and the next minute it was gone.”
    “Did you hear an explosion of any kind?” Turner asked.
    “There was no sound. In fact, there was no warning except for a vibration in the ground. I thought we were just having a small tremor. It was Allie who first felt it. If it weren’t for her, we most likely wouldn’t be here today. The first indication that something was wrong was, as I said, the vibration. A few seconds after that, there was a bluish glow coming from the area around the dam. After about a half-minute or so, the dam simply disappeared and this wall of water began heading toward the town. We just barely made it to a cement structure before the wave hit. I can still hear the sound of the screaming.”
    “You’re very fortunate you both lived.”
    “For a few moments, Allie didn’t. She wasn’t breathing and I thought I’d lost her. It was only because I, for some reason, watched a show instructing how to do CPR on a public broadcasting station. That’s why she’s alive today,” Waterman said watching his daughter play, smiling until the thought of the town and all the people enjoying the festivities and sidewalk sales were washed away with the flood brought despair again.

    9781469969381 The Ghost Of The Gilded Man
    9781497488397 The Ghost Of Tesla’s Folly
    9781469967066 The Ghost Of The Berlin
    9781461151975 The Ghost Of The Lost Dutchman’s Mine

    Thank you for your time,

    Nick Vance ‘N W VANCE
    The ‘Jack Turner AdventureSeries’