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Reviewing this novel on July 4th, a day in which Americans celebrate independence and freedom, is supreme irony indeed!
Imagine a future when car-bomb terrorism has hit the Pentagon, when the economy is "tanking" due to the exportation of industry to other countries, and civil rights are nonexistent because of the Federal government's investigations into possible terrorist cells and plots. Ten years ago, maybe this would be pure fiction; today in 2007 it's not!
So it is that this author has captured and depicted in fictional form a scenario that continues to unfold. An entire community in West Virginia, Harpers Ferry, is devastated after a microsystems plant closes and lays off all personnel except those who will agree to work in the plant's new Indonesian location. Protest runs amuck when the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) violently enters the scene, and deaths on both sides follow. The latter begins to arrest many people of Iraqi descent and any who protest this illegal, unconstitutional path.
In the midst of all this havoc, Ken Murphy, an Iraq War veteran who has lost his wife in a senseless killing, now faces unemployment and loss of medical benefits desperately needed for his terminally ill son. Events spiral out of control as DHS raids continue and citizens are moving toward declaring West Virginia's secession from the U.S.A. government.
Officers and soldiers are caught up in a growing reactionary spate of shootings and arrests approaching civil war, with fatal consequences that inflame rather than quell discontent. Anyone in the way of federal action is now the "enemy" or a "traitor."
Charles Sheehan-Miles has penned a novel in which the line between fiction and reality is so very, very thin! Republic is a taught, page-turning read that will leave any half-thoughtful person asking many questions about law, terrorism, dissent, and constitutional rights for everyone involved in such a plausible scenario. And if it's not that real to you, the unexpected, devastating, breath-catching, haunting end will leave you reeling and wondering for sure!
Unreal but oh so very real and therefore potent and credible fiction to be read by all!
Incredible job, Charles Sheehan-Miles
Reviewed by Viviane Crystal on July 4, 2007