Adult; Mystery/Thriller; (Publish)
In 1992, before “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell,” the CIA secretly ran a dark operational unit known only as the Demaris Protocol. For nearly a decade in parallel to the LGBT movement, the CIA used the protocol in special assignments to leverage same-sex coercion and exploit sexual orientation where it offered a unique advantage.
In June 1992, Trey Carter, a closeted, gay, Christian civilian is ensnared in a dangerous trap—recruited and trained within the experimental same-sex protocol. He is specifically tapped for an assignment in Munich. His orders are to lure and capture a former Soviet nuclear engineer with a dark secret. Special Officer Rick Morgan is assigned to lead the experimental recruitment and training of the young man, but Rick also hides a secret. He suddenly finds himself with a deep desire to protect the twenty-two year old recruit, while those in power observe and exploit the program to offer insights on the service ban for homosexuals within the US military. Rick and Trey, caught in the crossfire, develop a mutual attraction and must somehow navigate the dark world of counterintelligence as they attempt to hold the line and survive.
In this novel based on actual events, a closeted, young gay man involuntarily recruited into a secret CIA program in 1992 confronts his fears to carry out a mission against all odds.
Plot/Idea: 9 out of 10
Originality: 9 out of 10
Prose: 8 out of 10
Character/Execution: 8 out of 10
Overall: 8.50 out of 10
Plot: This novel is thrilling and action-packed. And just when the story begins to ebb and the characters' involvement with the protocol has concluded, the author continues the storyline and further enhances the suspense.
Prose: The writing is crisp and concise throughout, and the story is told at a such a thrilling pace that it's certain to keep the reader interested until the very end. Working against the novel is its length: at close to 500 pages, the baggy story should be shortened and the plot tightened.
Originality: The plot structure is unique, and the novel has an alluring premise. The inclusion of gay characters, government schemes, and international locales add to the book's originality.
Character Development: From the very beginning the characters are well developed and believable. Both protagonist Trey and Special Officer Rick Morgan are particularly well drawn.
Date Submitted: March 30, 2017
Ralph Pezzullo, NYT bestselling author Left of Boom, Jawbreaker and others
"Demaris Protocol is an exciting, fascinating thriller that deals with a little-known, and dark corner of CIA history. It crackles with authenticity!"
Ruffina Oserio, Readers' Favorite
"Demaris Protocol is a fast-paced and hugely entertaining story, a page-turner."