Archive for the 'The History Book' Category
Simon Jenkins, writing in the Sunday Times, about Britain’s latest moves to protect against terrorism describes the country as “not a police state, but a nation with police state tendencies.”
This is the key issue that Kat Polinski has to tackle in The History Book. In one of the latest reviews, Jim Randolph, from the Up Against the Wall magazine, writes.
The London of the novel, where most of the action takes place, isn’t as bleak as modern Iraq, but it is carved up into security zones complete with Draconian checkpoints and surveillance.. This is a fantastically entertaining, complex and well-plotted adventure yarn combining the best of the straight-out revenge tale with frighteningly plausible greed-fueled geopolitical machinations.
What are Kat’s links with the very special city of Lancaster, Ohio?
Kat’s grandfather, Peter Vincent Polinksi, came from Biala Podlaska in eastern Poland. He was granted refugee status to settle in the United States on April 17th 1945 and got a job as a driver at the Lockbourne Air Force Base, near Columbus. He married Kat’s grandmother, Kathleen Mary Evans, on May 16th 1949 and they settled in Lancaster. They had one son, John Polinski, Kat’s idealistic father. As John Polinski’s law career developed, he became a patron for the underprivileged. He created an orphanage next door to Lancaster’s fairground and regularly piloted his own plane between Fairfield County Airport and Washington D.C. to keep check on the orphanage and to visit his mother. His father died in a car crash on October 29th 1962 when a truck pulled out in front of him at the junction of 22 and Diley Road.
Much of this is not in The History Book.
I have reported from Lancaster several times in recent years and made some very good friends, including a family that makes the best cookies I’ve ever tasted. Check out the reports from Lancaster Broadcasts, Click here: Hell Escape and Click here: Empires and Pro-Life
In Chapter Eleven, Kat meets a tall, swaying woman, with a stutter and limp. It’s a fleeting introduction to one The History Book’s most compelling characters. The woman is Liz Luxton and she has cerebral palsy. As medical science improves, more of us will have a friend or loved one with cerebral palsy. Check it out on this brilliant site http://www.ucp.org/ Kat needs skills that Liz has learned despite her condition. She also needs Liz’s no nonsense character to get her through the fog, and when she listens to the sharp exchanges between Liz and her protective brother, Mike, she witnesses a new, unfamiliar side of humanity and love. There’s no way Liz is a victim. Enjoy her. She’s very special.
I’m getting a lot of questions about Kat Polinski, the History Book protaganist. Is she based on someone I know and where does she get her grit and skills. Some years back, I met a bright, beautiful and articulate young woman whose family had been wiped out in just one day, and I asked her how she managed. “I build walls around me” she said. “No-one gets to know me that well. I’m wild and a little crazy and I dust myself off and keep going.” Those same emotions are inside of Kat. But she comes from a very different background. She is born into privilege, but not happiness. On her mother’s side she’s from America’s old moneyed elite, on the other from the war-ravaged European diaspora. Her grandparents on her father’s side, from Russia and Poland, settled in Ohio after the Second World War. Her father is a CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) lawyer and an idealist who never gave up trying to create a fair world. Kat was raised in the heart of Washington’s political life, in a dysfunctional family where her only sister, Suzy, was ten years older than her — and is murdered at the beginning of the story. One reader asked if Kat wasn’t too young to do all the things she does. She’s 24. In covering the Iraq war, I have met many young women in the armed forces who tackle similar problems as Kat on a daily basis. Government systems block them. Less talented superiors smear them and insurgents are trying to kill them. They might not know everything, but they have a deep sense of justice and what is right and they do their job.
Hi and thanks for visiting. Send me your thoughts on The History Book or any of my reports that you can reach from the left hand side of this page. One thing that keeps us going is lively debate.
This is the big moment for The History Book, when Kat Polinski, its hard-driving, unsettled protagonist, is officially introduced to her readers. One reviewer described her tough, edgy and compassionate, and I’m on the edge of my seat as to whether you’ll like each other. So far the reviews coming in have been fantastic. The Washington Post compared The History Book to George Orwell’s 1984 and BookLoons to Ian Fleming’s James Bond, which, for me, hits exactly the right spot. The History Book is a story of unstoppable action that’s underpinned by the serious issues we face today. Other great notices have come from Armchair Reviews —- a pulse-pounding must-read for fans of political thrillers and suspense and Reader Views — Any reader who loves a riveting action-packed book will love The History Book. A lot of it’s made up, which is what fiction writers do. Much is based in reality and some of it — in a few years time — could turn out to be too close to the truth.
The issues are total government surveillance, contracted out to private companies who control energy supplies for their own gain. True or false? The realistic backdrops match my Dragon trilogy of future global wars and the three stand alone thrillers. But with Kat, I’ve tried something more ambitious, so please let me know if you think it works.
I live in London and travel crazily. Most recently, I’ve reported from Brazil, Cyprus, India, Iraq, Israel, Kosovo, Sweden and all over the US.