DOASKDOTELL BOOK REVIEW of Term Limits by Vince Flynn (Catherine Coulter, Blindside)


Author (or Editor):  Flynn, Vince

Title: Term Limits

Fiction? Anthology?  

Publisher:  Cloak and Dagger Press (St. Paul); second printing by Pocket Books

Date: 1997

ISBN:  ; ISBN 0-9658510-0-1;

Series Name:

Physical description: hardbound  (paper in reprint)

Relevance to doaskdotell:  self-publishing

Review: Book Review: Term Limits; By Vince Flynn; Cloak and Dagger Press, St. Paul, Mn. 1997; ISBN 0-9658510-0-1; Reprinted in 1998 by Pocket Books

Vince Flynn went into self-publishing about the same time I did, but on a much grander scale, quitting his job to focus on his book. And he hit a home run on the first pitch.

Vince told me at a book signing, "I am a libertarian," and "term limits" is indeed a libertarian buzz-word (there is also a pressure group in Washington called US Term Limits). But to Flynn, "term limits" means termination of major political figures, Congressmen and Senators, at the hands of commando assassins. That's some way to get smaller government.

Vince's presentation, particularly of the assassinations themselves, has a brutal crispness, simpler in execution (no pun) than Clancy's. If you're in the wrong, there are some very simple and effective ways to get eliminated. There are also some disaffected persons, out of the military, available for hire. And it's possible for respectable younger people, like his hero Michael O'Rourke, a young congressman, to get involved, and cross the lines of situational ethics.

This would make a fast-paced movie that will leave a lot of people talking and a lot of pols wanting to increase their security. But Flynn's best talent may be in anticipating the horrific terrorist threats - "the purification" - that our way of life may face any time. He has a several-book contract for espionage thrillers and I speculate that we can expect to see him deal with the breakdown of Russia (with unpaid scientists selling and smuggling nuclear materials), biological warfare of a "hot zone" variety (maybe a lot of airplanes will come down about the same time after an airport gets sprayed - that's just my own speculation of what an author like Vince would come up with), or maybe another war over secession. Or maybe he will look at environmental threats like global warming or the ozone layer and test the limits of freedom. The asteroid idea already seems too trite. So does a president's getting "set up" with one of George Gilder's "sexual princesses." Will we still have a free country when the year 2100 approaches?

Seriously, the public needs to get educated on these things. Writer's like Flynn can get the point across.

 Flynn wrote on my autograhed copy "keep writing" and that's my advice to him. And I'm glad to own a copy of one of the self-published originals. The self-proofing of the original edition was quite good (the Chicago Manual of Style writes reams on the proofing process in an established trade publisher), with only a few typos that I noticed.

In 1999, Pocket Books published Vince Flynn's second novel, Transfer of Power. The premise of this thriller seems more contrived to me. Let us hope Flynn uses his imagination (his technical imagination reminds one of Sebastian Junger) to warn us about how a purification could really happen. I promise that I will!

Vince Flynn brings his thrillers up to date (relative to Al Qaeda) with the 2004 novel (Simon & Schuster) Memorial Day, in which Mitch Rapp must prevent a nuclear explosion in Washington, DC. The setting is a new memorial honoring the veterans of World War II. In fact, in real life, such a memorial is to dedicated in Washington on May 29, 2004. See the comments at the end of

Blindside, by Catherine Coulter, (New York: Jove Books, 2004), “and FBI thriller”, ISBN 0-515-13720-0, 339 pages, paper, with a preface for “Blowout”; this book is published by a conventional trade publisher) has a troubling situation, of three mathematics teachers being murdered in the Washington DC area, and a six year old boy being kidnapped, apparently by someone who sees himself as some kind of religious savior. So the story sets up some real issues. Most of the story takes place in Tennessee (the Smokies) and Virginia, but the climax occurs in Washington, around the monuments, as a noreaster snowstorm approaches, at the FDR Memorial, which is not visited as often as the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials. Will this become a movie?

Reference:  essay on self-publishing


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