Riley Fitzhugh is recruited by the OSS for temporary duty as a naval spy in Morocco. Riley’s assignment is to kidnap a French river pilot and extract him from Casablanca. Riley meets an old flame from his days in Hollywood, and these two have some surprises waiting for them.
Riley Fitzhugh is temporarily made officer in charge of the naval guard on board the SS Carlota, a merchant ship assigned to deliver bombs and aviation fuel to the Sebou River during Operation Torch. The Atlantic crossing was supposed to be in convoy, but Carlota breaks down after surviving a U-boat attack and is forced to limp along alone.
Evoking the spirit—and danger—of the early American West, this is the story of the Battle of Beecher Island, pitting an outnumbered United States Army patrol against six hundred Native warriors, where heroism on both sides of the conflict captures the vital themes at play on the American frontier.
Learn more about the Battle Of Beecher Island with Terry Mort’s Exclusive interview on the Warfare podcast:
This novel is the latest in the series featuring Riley Fitzhugh. With the advent of the Second World War Fitzhugh leaves his private detective business in Los Angeles and joins the Navy. He goes through officer training and gets assigned to the PC 475, an anti U-boat vessel. The 475 is nicknamed The Nameless by her crew, because patrol craft were only given numbers. The ship patrols the Gulf of Mexico during the early days of the war. Fitzhugh and the Nameless uncover and destroy German supply station in northern Cuba and track the crew of a damaged U boat. Along the way Fitzhugh has a few adventures in Havana, where he meets both Ernest Hemingway and his glamorous wife, Martha Gellhorn.
The eve of World War II. A Hollywood producer’s murdered wife. Her husband’s guilty memory of a shipboard romance. A stolen painting signed “Picasso.” French gangsters. A beautiful courtesan. A shoot-out in a brasserie. All these and more confront Private Detective Riley Fitzhugh as he travels from Hollywood to the Riviera, Paris, and London in search of his client’s vanished dream girl and some answers.
Hollywood in the Thirties: Nazi saboteurs, gangsters running gambling ships, British spies and diplomats, FBI agents, starlets looking for the big break, cheap hustlers on the fringes of the law, local cops – some are friends and some are adversaries, but all are involved somehow with Riley Fitzhugh, a private eye who’s wondering whether the death of an English aristocrat really was an accident.
In February 1861, the twelve-year-old son of Arizona rancher John Ward was kidnapped by Apaches. Ward followed their trail and reported the incident to patrols at Fort Buchanan, blaming a band of Chiricahuas led by the infamous warrior Cochise. Though Ward had no proof that Cochise had kidnapped his son, Lt. George Bascom organized a patrol and met with the Apache leader, who, not suspecting anything was amiss, had brought along his wife, his brother, and two sons. Despite Cochise’s assertions that he had not taken the boy and his offer to help in the search, Bascom immediately took Cochise’s family hostage and demanded the return of the boy. An incensed Cochise escaped the meeting tent amidst flying bullets and vowed revenge.What followed that precipitous encounter would ignite a Southwestern frontier war between the Chiricahuas and the US Army that would last twenty-five years.
In the summer of 1874, Brevet Major General George Armstrong Custer led an expedition of some 1000 troops and more than one hundred wagons into the Black Hills of South Dakota. This fascinating work of narrative history tells the little-known story of this exploratory mission and reveals how it set the stage for the climactic Battle of the Little Bighorn two years later. What is the significance of this obscure foray into the Black Hills? The short answer, as the author explains, is that Custer found gold. This discovery in the context of the worst economic depression the country had yet experienced spurred a gold rush that brought hordes of white prospectors to the Sioux’s sacred grounds. The result was the trampling of an 1868 treaty that had granted the Black Hills to the Sioux and their inevitable retaliation against the white invasion.
A fascinating account of a dramatic, untold chapter in Hemingway’s life—his pursuit of German U-boats during World War II. From the summer of 1942 until the end of 1943, Ernest Hemingway lived in Havana, Cuba, and spent much of his time in the Gulf Stream hunting German sub- marines in his wooden fishing boat, The Pilar. This phase of Hemingway’s life has only been briefly touched upon in biographies of Hemingway but proved to be of enormous importance to him. At the time, the U-boats were torpedoing dozens of Allied tankers each month and threatened America’s ability to wage war in Europe. Hemingway’s patrols were supported by the U.S. Navy, and he viewed these dangerous missions as both patriotic duty and pure adventure. But they were more than that: they provided some literary basis for The Old Man and the Sea and Islands in the Stream.
“I began to get tired of staying in one place so long.” So said Samuel Langhorne Clemens, known to all as Mark Twain. Ironically, the quintessential American writer spent many years of his life living and traveling around the world. Sometimes because of wanderlust, sometimes because of economic necessity, he was on the go constantly. And along the way he encountered colorful characters, strange institutions and cultures, a variety of adventures and misadventures, all of which he incorporated into his travel writing-writing that reflects Twain’s matchless eye for irony, humor and, now and then, tragedy. Mark Twain on Travel is a timeless collection of some of Twain’s best writing, as he catalogued the antics of what he came to call “the damned human race.”
Though he made his name and his fortune as an author of Western novels, Zane Grey’s best writing has to do with fishing. There he was free from the conventions of the Western genre and the expectations of the market, and he was able to blend his talent for narrative with his keen eye for detail and humor, much of it self-deprecating, into books and articles that are both informative and exciting.
in Jack London on Adventure, are excerpts from his well-loved works, which were the result of his restless quest for experience, combined with “his observations of unalterable facts,” as editor Terry Mort writes in his introduction. Lose yourself in the sheer unending quietude of the North in “White Fang” and “The White Silence”; enter into the listless, worried mind of an elder in “The League of the Old Men”; prepare to sail around the world for seven years’ time alongside the author-turned-captain, himself, in “The Cruise of the Snark,” where the famed boat is built with each dollar earned from London’s writings; and peek into the observations of seasoned sailors and the foolish passengers they carry in “The Sea Wolf.” Mort ends with the statement, “A complex man and artist is hard to capture in a single image,” but in terms of the unlikely and unknown, London’s works here capture the thrill that burned in him so brightly.
The first novel in the Ethan Grey trilogy. “It’s not my fight,” said Ethan Grey. It didn’t matter. Mexico was at war, and he was in it. He’d wanted a cruise in warm waters, a chance to forget the war he’d just fought, the War Between the States. But the ship he chose so casually had another mission, and like it or not Ethan Grey was on board. The storms at sea, the battles with enemy ships, the long trip overland through hostile territory, the flight from French mercenaries; it became his war, too. But this time, at least it was simpler. It was just a fight for his friends. And for Maria.