And just like that, Patriots and Tyrants is finished! I’m actually quite surprised and rather pleased with the ending. It’s a nice, solid hook into the third installment, The Tree of Liberty, which I will start shortly.
I do, however, have at least one scene left to write. However, it’s something that has to happen earlier in the book–commentary on the actions of the Federal government related to the crackdown on civil liberties. I’m taking something along the lines of the infamous Janet Napolitano memo to watch out for right-wing terrorists and applying it to this situation.
In doing so, I can once again point out that Jefferson’s Road is a caricature, of a sorts. I am deliberately magnifying and diminishing aspects of our political climate–both to tell a compelling story as well as to highlight the rampant fear-mongering which has so overwhelmed the nation.
To that point, I’m especially grateful to Christopher Truscott’s excellent review of the first book on his blog. I guess the only thing I’d take issue with are the four stars. Four stars, Chris? Really? You didn’t think maybe it deserved one more? (I’m half-kidding, of course! He called it “Frightful,” which is kinda the same reaction I got from Gordon Ryan on his Amazon review. He called it “A Furtive Read,” and said, “I write political thrillers myself, and have considered creating a scenario where killing a president might be justified, but I have refrained on the basis that such discussion is tantamount to insurrection, or, at the very least, ill-considered. Jefferson Road has not absolved me of that trepidation.”
I suppose that’s a good thing, because I don’t intend to resolve anyone of such trepidation. I fully intended Jefferson’s Road to be frightful and furtive, because I don’t want it to fall into the same category as something like The Turner Diaries, which were read by Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh and used as justification for his terrorism.
I am not endorsing nor recommending terrorism. Far from it! What I am doing is laying the case that heated political rhetoric causes terrorism, and may indeed cause terrorism in the future. However, it isn’t the rhetoric of the Left that causes leftists to be terrorists, nor is it the rhetoric of the Right that leads right-wingers to contemplate terrorism (and yes, that statement is very carefully phrased). Rather, it is the rhetoric of the right that motivates the Left to action, and it is the rhetoric and policies of the Left which may eventually cause the right to push back. Jefferson’s Road is the story of that push-back.
I’ll give a more succinct explanation in the Author’s foreword for Patriots and Tyrants, and I hope you enjoy reading the novel.