“Sometime in Planet Earth’s future, those convicted of major crimes like murder are sent off to a penal colony, Europa, in outer space. It’s a horrible place and Billy Russell, a former DEA officer, has been incarcerated there for 15 years of a 20-year sentence. But to his shock and confusion, he is released 5 years early and sent back to Earth. He is given a pigeonhole of an apartment, a small supply of food, a bottle of bourbon and a job with the military police. His commission is to ferret out and rid a now drug-dependent society of those who supply the drugs. In time, Billy learns that the method of dealing with those at the top of the drug supply chain is morally unacceptable to him but what choice does he have? Not doing his job means being sent back to Europa. And even more unacceptable to Billy…and to others as he finds out…is what the world he once knew has become: all countries are now under one central government body. How did all this happen over 15 the years he was incarcerated? Because Midnight Black: The Purge by R.J. Eastwood is a political thriller set in the future (not my first choice in fiction, I almost passed on selecting this superb book to read and review. How glad I am that I didn’t. Eastwood’s impressive bio on Amazon, plus the fact that his first novel has so many positive reviews, made me curious. That curiosity was amply satisfied. I absolutely loved the concept behind the fascinating plot of Midnight Black. It’s both unique and frightening in its implications. And then there’s the author’s considerable skill as a writer: Eastwood’s experience as a producer and director of feature films and documentaries shows throughout the story. The plot moves swiftly and Eastwood makes it so easy for readers to visualize the settings which change like scenes in a movie. This movie-like presentation is most appealing as the author engages all our senses and draws us into the plot and reveals his characters. When Midnight Black finally draws to a close, readers feel as if they have truly lived in this future world, but hope they never will. Curious? You should be. This is powerful writing and well worth your time. Don’t be surprised if you read it in one sitting. I did!”
Midnight Black: The Purge
R. J. Eastwood, author
Billy Russell’s career as a DEA officer abruptly ends when he cold-bloodedly executes the man who committed a heinous crime against him. Sentenced to 20 years hard labor in total isolation from the outside world, he’s suddenly, and without explanation, released on parole 5 years early. Returning to society, he learns that an isolated nuclear attack spread primal fear of a nuclear holocaust allowing Autocratic billionaires to seize control of the world. But their faulty economic policies have caused rampant poverty, crime, disease, and drug addiction. As a condition of his parole, Billy is assigned to a government drug enforcement unit in Boston, but soon makes a gruesome discovery of the unit’s true mission. Approached by a secret underground dissident group planning to overthrow the authoritarian world government, Billy joins them to end the demonic reign of tyranny only to discover the shocking details of what is really taking place. Midnight Black is a fast-paced, action packed thriller/suspense novel in the tradition of author Lee Child.
Readers' Favorite - reviewer Viga Boland