Just in from Kent Harrington...
This is the jacket copy for his new novel RED JUNGLE...
Red Jungle is the archetypal new-wave thriller from Kent Harrington, author of the classic noir novel Dia de los Muertos. Set in Guatemala, Red Jungle steam-rolls over the tired formulae of good guys and bad guys. Red Jungle springs full-blown from the author’s intimate knowledge of the miasmal reality that is modern Guatemala, with its dark, semi-feudal economic under-pinnings—the legacy of a 100-year-and-counting tyranny orchestrated by U.S. corporate overlords. Red Jungle pulls the cover off the Big Lies of neo-liberal economics and makes clear the real reasons for the decades of underdevelopment plaguing Latin America. If you ever wanted to know where you coffee really comes from. . . .
. . .
Russell Cruz-Price is the child of an elite Guatemalan family with a hyphenated last name, and the circumstances of his birth and upbringing have conspired to give him a hyphenated Life as well. Born of an American father and high-class, European-Guatemalan mother whose murder, supposedly at the hands of communist insurgents, cheated him out of a normal childhood, Russell has come to view the world as a hostile place. Rejected by his father, Russell has been raised by U.S. military schools and has attended U.S. colleges, where he was a brilliant student of economics.
Now working as a journalist for a famous English newspaper, Russell has been sent to cover a dangerous and politically chaotic Guatemala, where coffee prices are crashing and neo-liberal policies delivered from Washington have failed to keep the country from splitting apart at the seams.
Russell has become friends with a young German hot-shot archaeologist, Mahler, who believes a priceless Mayan antiquity—the possibly apocryphal and legendarily lost Red Jaguar—can be found on a failing coffee plantation. The two men pool their resources and enter the jungle in pursuit of fame and fortune.
Russell falls in love with the one woman in Guatemala he should definitely stay away from. Beatrice is an English girl who’s been to Oxford, but she’s also the beautiful young wife of the notorious General Carlos Selva, candidate for the presidency. In a country where life is cheap, Russell’s own life just got discounted to zero.
The country, Russell, Beatrice, and the general all head towards disaster as Russell searches for the Red Jaguar. His love affair with Beatrice will force him into the country’s political vortex, and Russell will gamble his all in a game where not only his future, but that of the entire country of Guatemala is at stake, as it attempts to throw off the colonial yoke of the past hundred years and move into the 21st century.