A rogue general within China’s People’s Liberation Army has a 25-year plan to smuggle nuclear weapons into the United States. Lieutenant General Kung Yusheng has been the Commander of 22 Base, the secret underground repository of China’s nuclear arsenal, for over 30 years. He is a collector of artifacts owned by famous military leaders, loves American art, and would like nothing better than to bring the United States to its knees.
Amanda Langford has been recently hired by the CIA at the Mission Center for Weapons and Counterproliferation. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Nuclear Engineering, and speaks Mandarin, Korean and Japanese. She discovers that China has produced more highly enriched uranium than had been previously estimated, enough material to produce 20-60 nuclear weapons.
When a nuclear weapon is discovered in San Francisco, it leads to a wild search in the United States for more of the devastating devices, even as a 10-megaton thermonuclear weapon is delivered, and hidden, less than seven miles from the White House.
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I was born in Durham, North Carolina on November 8, 1951. I attended NC State University from 1969 to 1972, majoring in mechanical engineering. Two problems: first, the drinking age back then was 18; second, I majored in engineering because all my friends majored in engineering (I found out the hard way that calculus and I didn’t get along).
My mother’s comment was, “I don’t know what you’re going to do, but you’re not living here.” So I enlisted in the US Army in 1972, during the Vietnam War, and found myself in the Infantry. I was lucky. I was never sent to Vietnam. After two years, I applied for the Army’s Nuclear Power Plant Operator’s School, graduated in 1975 with a specialty in Radiation Protection, and spent the next year teaching math at the school (God does have a sense of humor). After spending three years in Honolulu, working at the Tripler Army Medical Center, I left the army in November 1979 with a wife, a two year old son, and no job.
I started working at Three Mile Island Unit 2 in February 1980, 11 months after the accident (that’s a complete separate novel). That started a career in nuclear power that lasted until 2012. I have written lesson plans, procedures and presentations galore (not exactly creative writing). Creative writing is different. You have to imagine a scene, place yourself inside it, and then describe what you are seeing in words (hopefully interesting words). I’m also a woodworker, a glazier and a sculptor. I have had work displayed in the Smithsonian in Washington, DC.