Summer 2008 sees former Royal Marine John Pierce lured from running convoys in Iraq to a lucrative contract in the steamy jungles of French West Africa. He soon discovers this new theatre is even more dangerous than the war zone he left behind. Corrupt officials, drug cartels, and competing military factions rub shoulder-to-shoulder in a melting pot of greed and intrigue… And a sadistic foe lurks in the shadows.
When old intelligence contacts take an interest, the situation gets complicated fast. Dark forces emerge and events spiral out of control. Pitched into a desperate race against time, can Pierce’s makeshift team of soldiers and civilians fight fire with fire and outwit vicious enemies?
One thing’s for sure, Pierce won’t leave anyone to the mercy of a brutal adversary he knows only too well no matter what it takes.
When and where do you prefer to write?
It varies during the process.
If working overseas, I tend to write early morning with my laptop on whatever decent surface I can find before anyone else is up and around. Often a rickety kitchen table.
At home, I write anywhere but my office. I leave that for the day job. Time of day can vary, but I tend to like everything else out the way before settling down mid-afternoon to write through to early evening.
Do you need peace and quiet when you are writing?
I find it hard to write without total silence. The one exception has been the dynamic convoy sections in Part I of Don’t Play Dead With Vultures. For that, I had the War is the Answer album by Five Finger Death Punch blasting out on a loop. Funny thing is, although I’ve seen footage & shows with troops careering round Iraq/Afghan with thrash metal blaring out, in my experience there was zero music when out on the ground. Instead, we were always listening out for messages on the radio net.
If you had the chance to co-write a book. Whom would it be with?
I reckon co-writing with a female author would be an interesting dynamic – both for the writing and for the story itself. Preferably someone who knows what they’re doing and can keep me on the straight & narrow. So how about it, Lesley McEvoy?
Say someone asks if they can use your name in a book. Would you rather be the ‘good one’ or the ‘bad one’?
As a kid I wanted to be the Luke Skywalker character, although I quickly evolved into Han Solo but without the charm. As for nowadays, mark me down as one of the bad guys!
Who would you like/have liked to interview?
Michael Caine would have some stories. With Spike Milligan on standby just in case he couldn’t make it.
Where can I find you when you are reading?
Hiding somewhere because I should probably be working! I bounce between ebooks and print books and always have an audiobook on the go for walking the dog & long-distance travel.
Where can I find you when you are not writing/reading?
Probably working at my laptop or sloping off to take the dog out for another walk or running/training. Evenings and weekends I may well be watching football.
What goes through your mind when you hold your new book in your hands for the first time?
Satisfaction & relief tinged with sadness that I have to let go. I lived inside the story of Don’t Play Dead With Vultures for more than 2 years and now it’s time to move on. And fear that I’m going to spot a typo on page 1. Got to get it read asap so I can relax.
How do you come up with a title for your book?
It was a variation on a phrase or proverb that I’d heard somewhere. The title crystalized during a concerted effort to think one up when I started Part II of the book.
How do you pick a cover for your book?
Although I provide a very general note of what I’d prefer – in this case no ‘running man’ silhouette, more of a ‘team’ feel, and action orientated – the actual design is all down to the publisher. They knocked it out of the park first go, again.
About the Author
Jack Leavers is a former Royal Marine with over thirty-years’ experience spread across the military, private security, corporate investigations, maritime counter-piracy, and risk management. His varied career has included numerous deployments to conflict zones around the world such as Northern Ireland, Bosnia, Iraq, Afghanistan, trouble spots in Africa, and the Somali pirate-infested waters of the Indian Ocean.
He continues to work in challenging environments and has now begun to pen novels inspired by some of the more enterprising projects that got the green light, and other audacious plans that didn’t.
Jack is normally based in London but finds he’s at his most productive writing-wise when deployed overseas. New projects in Iraq and Africa beckon, which should be good news for his third book.
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/jackleaversauthor T