Modern Signed Books – David Baldacci on his latest novel, No Man’s Land
Watch as we unbox our signed, first edition shipment of THE LAST MILE by David Baldacci. You can purchase your collectible copy here: https://www.vjbooks.com/Baldacci-David-Last-Mile-The-Signed-First-Ed-p/balmile01.htm
About The Last Mile
Convicted murderer Melvin Mars is counting down the last hours before his execution–for the violent killing of his parents twenty years earlier–when he’s granted an unexpected reprieve. Another man has confessed to the crime.
Amos Decker, newly hired on an FBI special task force, takes an interest in Mars’s case after discovering the striking similarities to his own life: Both men were talented football players with promising careers cut short by tragedy. Both men’s families were brutally murdered. And in both cases, another suspect came forward, years after the killing, to confess to the crime. A suspect who may or may not have been telling the truth. (more…)
The assassin seems to have been edging his way into the suspense genre for some time now, wrapped in a dark mystique and lurking in the pages of political thrillers, epic and urban fantasy, and even young adult titles. Using what some may deem morally reprehensible processes or tactics they practice the grey areas of their profession, taking out enemies and assorted bad guys leaving minimal collateral damage. We quickly find ourselves drawn to the anti-hero or sympathetic villain, who must do what needs to be done, without the slightest concern for personal welfare – their duty to god and country, or the higher calling always comes first. Operating in the shadows, these are the characters that draw us in, capturing our imaginations.
“Assassin” has different meanings. Maybe it those who kill powerful people for political, religious, or even moral reasons, sometimes doing the world a service. However, in most fantasy literature, an assassin is a person who kills people for money, some practicing a distorted code of right and wrong – others totally free of such entanglements.
The origins of the assassin can be traced back to just before the First Crusade, around 1080, their history preserved within European sources such as the writings of Marco Polo, where they are depicted as trained killers, responsible for the systematic elimination of opposing figures. With origins with the Nizari branch of the Muslims, these “assassins” were renowned as militant fanatics, fully committed to carry out every request of their leaders.
As I explored this topic I was shocked how prevalent the assassin’s role seems to be in the books on our shelves. Nearly 50 books actually have the word assassin in the title – Ted Bell’s ASSASSIN, Larry Bond’s SOUL OF THE ASSASSIN, Stephen Coonts’ THE ASSASSIN, Barry Eisler’s THE LAST ASSASSIN and REQUIEM FOR AN ASSASSIN, Robert Ferrigno’s trilogy – HEART, PRAYERS, and SINS OF THE ASSASSIN, Brad Meltzer’s THE FIFTH ASSASSIN, THE ETHICAL ASSASSIN by David Liss, and of course Vince Flynn’s classic THE AMERICAN ASSASSIN, and many more.
However, many more assassin lay hidden inside the covers of such books as the GREY MAN novels by Mark Greaney (GREY MAN, BALLISTIC, and DEAD EYE), David Baldacci’s Will Robie Series (THE INNOCENT, THE HIT, and THE TARGET), THE BUTCHER’S BOY, SLEEPING DOGS and THE INFORMANT by Thomas Perry, and who can forget Jack Coughlin’s sniper Kyle Swanson – the latest and seventh in the series being ON SCOPE, but the consummate man behind the gun is none other than Stephen Hunter’s “Bob the Nailer” Bob Lee Swagger – POINT OF IMPACT, BLACK LIGHT, TIME TO HUNT, THE 47TH SAMURAI, NIGHT OF THUNDER, I SNIPER, DEAD ZERO, THE THIRD BULLET and SNIPER’S HONOR.
Ben Coes burst onto the scene IN 2010, introducing us to Dewey Andreas in POWER DOWN, followed by COUP D’ETAT, THE LAST REFUGE and EYE FOR AN EYE. Scot Harvath is the creation of Brad Thor. Harvath is a secret service agent, ex-navy seal, and big time ass kicker. It all started with THE LIONS OF LUCERNE back in 2002, followed PATH OF THE ASSASSIN, STATE OF THE UNION, BLOWBACK, TAKEDOWN, THE FIRST COMMANDMENT, THE LAST PATRIOT, THE APOSTLE, FOREIGN INFLUENCE, THE ATHENA PROJECT, FULL BLACK, BLACK LIST, HIDDEN ORDER and ACTS OF WAR. The Thor Scott Harvath series has recently been reproduced in three volume collector’s editions.
Assassination is one of the oldest tools of power struggles between nations or political opponents, as well as the expressed method of terror by certain psychopathic orders. During the Cold War, the U.S. attempted several times to assassinate Cuban President Fidel Castro. In 1981, President Ronald Reagan supported an order that stated, “No person employed by or acting on behalf of the United States Government shall engage in, or conspire to engage in, assassination.”
However, in 1986, Reagan ordered an attack on the barracks where Muammar al-Gaddafi was known to be sleeping. Since the rise of al-Qaeda, all US administrations have backed “targeted killings.” In May of 2011 an operation, code-named Operation Neptune Spear, was carried out in a Central Intelligence Agency-led operation resulting in the death of Osama bin Laden.
Does art imitate life or vice versa – you be the judge – there is plenty to read!
As the end of 2013 approaches VJ Books, an online seller of collectible fiction, recommends that you take a break from stuffing those unwanted items into bags destined from the Goodwill, Salvation Army or other local charities, and consider special causes promoted by NY Times bestselling authors.
Many well known authors take an active part in giving back to their communities through their own nonprofits and by promoting other worthwhile causes.
David Baldacci and his wife Michelle are the founders of Wish You Well Foundation, supporting family literacy in the United States by fostering and promoting the development and expansion of new and existing literacy and educational programs. (www.wishyouwellfoundation.org)
Steve Berry and his wife Elizabeth have launched History Matters to assist communities around the world with historic restoration and preservation, to help rescue those links to our past that are endangered because of poor conservation. (www.history-matters.org)
Bestselling author James Rollins has founded Authors United for Veterans to raise awareness and funds for USA Cares, a nonprofit organization dedicated to helping soldiers and their families in their time of need. (authorsunitedforveterans.org)
Sandra Brown founded The Moira Anderson Foundation whose aim is to provide a place of safety and support for children and adults who have been affected by Childhood Sexual Abuse. (www.moiraanderson.org)
Taking his attention away from the Dirk Pitt Adventures series, Clive Cusssler founded the National Underwater and Marine Agency (NUMA), a volunteer organization dedicated to preserving our maritime heritage through the discovery, archeological survey and conservation of shipwreck artifacts. (www.numa.net)
Author Brad Meltzer supports several notable causes including: Big Brothers/Big Sisters (www.bbbsa.org) – matching kids with mentors since 1904, Big Brothers/Big Sisters is the nation’s oldest and largest youth mentoring organization, The Arc (www.thearc.org) – an incredible organization of and for people with mental retardation. Helps families, provides information, and fights the big fight by treating people with dignity and respect, and Sharsheret (www.sharsheret.org) – started by one of Brad’s law school friends, it’s one of the few organizations in the world that focuses on young women with breast cancer. It’s also the place that truly helped Brad’s Mom when she was fighting her losing battle with the disease.
“We are truly honored to work with these authors,” says Virginia, co-founder of VJ Books, “they are generous with their time and money, and have huge hearts.”
She continues, “As you plan those year-end tax deductible gifts, please consider these organizations. Or check out your favorite author’s website for more worthy causes. Every dollar helps.”