An Adventure Novel

by

Don Beverly

Operation: Everglades

Preview

Capitalizing on the worst-kept secret of today’s American policy makers, the drugs for cash pipeline between the U.S. and South America provides a proven structure for implementing the escape of a murderous Islamic terrorist from his imprisonment in the vulnerable and politically sensitive U.S. naval base prison at Guantanamo, Cuba.  The prisoner’s brother has sworn to Allah that he will infiltrate the island of Cuba, taking advantage of the destitute condition of its population and armed with truckloads of arms, ammunition and explosives, smuggled in through the Florida Everglades, invade the Guantanamo prison and facilitate the escape of his homicidal sibling. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Scene of the crime...

the tree house

Unwittingly, the unemployed, but resourceful young Miami lawyer, Jake McCall, after his airboat adventure goes badly wrong, survives a near hurricane on an isolated island in Lake Okeechobee and is catapulted into the midst of this plot after an unexplainable murder occurs while McCall is asleep within feet of the victim in an abandoned tree house.  Logically, only Jake could have committed the murder, but didn’t. In attempting to prove his innocence, he almost loses his own life and encounters the world’s most elite killers who become unforeseen allies who will thereafter control his destiny and ultimately, his battle for freedom, both for himself and his country.

 

Feedback on this book from a new fan:

" Don,

Greetings from Chicago, IL. Just finished Operation: Everglades. I picked it up a couple months ago in Palm Beach. My daughter goes to Palm Beach Atlantic University, so I'm in Florida often and am a huge fan of Florida fiction. Helps me deal with living in Illinois until I can move down there (hopefully within the next few years!).

I started your book when I finished one of Randy Wayne White's latest. He has been my favorite author for years, since I ran out of John MacDonald books, and now you are right in line!

This book's story line was very similar to so many of White's, which I can never get enough of.

Read your Operation: Everglades in 2 days. LOVED it.

Looking now to get a hold of Cartel Connection when I finish this email
so, please put me on your mailing list for the future!
Thanks so much! Again, love your style. Very excited I found you.

Sincerely,
Tiffany H. "

 


Sample Chapters

 When Jake awoke suddenly several hours later it was if the wind and rain had been double-clutched into a higher gear during the night. Even though protected by the plywood walls of the tree house, the mosquito netting was flapping wildly about although, thankfully, the two men remained dry. Darkness would last for at least another hour or so with the dark cloud cover and daylight would be reluctant to provide visibility unless the rain slacked off, which did not appear likely. At least the early light should enable Jake to find landmarks after leaving the treehouse and see to follow those signs around the border of the island until he crossed the main trail leading back to the southeast. All of this continued to be obscured by last nights’ darkness and storm. With a little luck the Lycoming would start and the bilge pump would soon empty the rainwater out of the hull so a relatively safe trip back toward Slim’s could be made. Once there, the logistics of coordinating truck, trailer and boat could be arranged with a few telephone calls if the remainder of the return leg to Clewiston proved impossible due to an inability to navigate the bad section of cypress trees and swamp which lay in between.

In the meantime, Jake awaited some movement from across the floor where his client lay, apparently still sleeping soundly but neither snoring nor moving.

“Must have been totally exhausted”, Jake thought, as he slipped out of his netting and started down the treehouse stairway in the darkness. Incredibly, a few embers still remained from last night’s fire. Jake threw on a couple of logs and sat down to awaken and wait for the day, obsessed by the thought of a steaming cup of strong coffee and a cold glass of fresh Florida orange juice. “Oh well, at least Slim’s might have a weak machine coffee and a carton of orange juice from concentrate, maybe”, he concluded.

After the fire caught back up and provided some light through the rain and fog, Jake held his slicker over his head and made his way through the wind-driven rain to the airboat to check out how much water had accumulated in the hull. It wasn’t nearly as bad as he had anticipated since most of the hull was below deck and the access hatch was protected by a canvas cover below the seats and engine. Once started the boat should run fine while the bilge pump emptied the water from below. Despite this perfectly sensible plan, the weather not only continued to be uncooperative but was actually growing worse. Now the wind maintained a constant gale force and waves were overcoming the grass and willows and crashing against the shallow shore, leaving little on the island above water except the deck below the treehouse. Out of caution, Jake left the fire and slogged through the mud and wind in order to secure the boat to a post. Otherwise, the wind and rising water could easily tear away their only way to get back across the lake and swamp. Jake knew of cases when boats of extremely light weight construction such as his had been overturned in high winds. Comforting thought.

After securing the boat and evaluating the weather, Jake concluded they would be stuck on the island for at least several more hours even assuming the storm would decide to give them a break. Under the circumstances there was no reason to awaken the client and even though it was now almost 5:30 a.m., nothing had happened to give Jake much hope. His thoughts went to Julie, now well on her way to Jackson, and Hoover, probably sound asleep in the Okeechobee cabin with a dry bed, plenty of water and a daily visit from his rancher neighbor to see that Hoover was well-fed while Jake was away.

Over an hour later, a little after 6:30 a.m., some noticeable daylight began to show itself and still the impossible storm continued. Even though visibility was improving slightly the men remained trapped and could only wait. Nevertheless, Jake decided to awaken the client in order to at least have someone to share in the discomfort. He arose from the fire, carefully crossed the slippery deck and climbed the stairway to the sleeping room. When he opened the door he expected some sign of life from the client but even in the dim light could see there had been no movement since he had left the room almost two hours earlier.

“Really strange”, Jake thought as he crossed the room and called for the man to rise and shine. Nothing. Jake bent over the sleeping body and shook it.  Nothing. He then gripped the man’s left shoulder and rolled him over, thinking this would surely awaken him from even the deepest sleep. As he rolled the big man over on his back Jake could barely see the client’s face in the darkness but one thing was certain. He was not asleep. Neither was he breathing. Both eyes were wide open. The man was dead as a doornail. 

 Jake reflexively jerked his hand away from the corpse and fell back against the wall. His brain began spinning as it tried desperately to make some sense of the situation. He spontaneously knew he had to get away from this place as soon as he safely could, locate the police and emergency rescue team and report the death. Jake could only conclude the man must have had a heart attack during the night. He hesitated about what to do next and decided to cover the body with one of the rain slickers and get back down to the fire. The room had suddenly become very spooky. Jake tucked the slicker around the body and was stunned when he felt something cold and metallic attached to the man’s body, sort of under the left armpit and angled toward his heart. Jake hurriedly grabbed his flashlight and shined it on the object which was buried to its hilt in the dead man’s chest. He realized it looked like the handle of an icepick or dagger-type weapon which had been used to stab the man directly through the heart. Obviously not a suicide nor the work of an amateur. But since Jake and his client had been alone on the island since last night, no one could have possibly come and gone and in the process stabbed a man sleeping less than 10 feet away on the second floor of a treehouse in the middle of a mini-hurricane. Jake’s instant analysis was perfectly logical but the man was still stone dead and a third party stranger’s dagger was protruding from his chest. 

“Good God”, Jake thought! 

“Someone is on the island. Must have been here when we arrived. Why was the client killed and not me? Where’s the killer now?” 

Then like one of the seeming non-stop flashes of lightning it hit Jake between the eyes,

“How in Hell am I going to be able to explain this to law enforcement when even I can’t believe it. The two of us are alone and trapped on an isolated island in the middle of a swamp, surrounded by a huge lake in an unrelenting baby hurricane and one of us turns up dead in the dark of night. Amazingly, the other guy, me, sees and hears absolutely nothing. Good luck, Jake.”

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The Everglades... a sea of grass.    The island... the scene of a murder.

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Previous Releases by Don Beverly

Available now

'Cartel Connection'

Fiction

 

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'How to talk Western'

Non-fiction humor

 

Available now

'Operation Everglades'

Fiction

s

Available now

'The Ripple Effect Murders'

 Fiction

 

Available now

'Bite The Hand'

Fiction

Available now

'Birmingham Boys'

Fiction

 

New and Recent Releases

 

The fifth in the Jake McCall Adventure novel series

Birmingham Boys

 

The sixth in the Jake McCall Adventure novel series

Ponzi: The Shell Game

 

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