Fatal Incident – Book Review

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Recently I read the novel Fatal Incident by Jim Proebstle. This book is a historical fiction novel which is based upon true life events and frankly I didn’t think I would enjoy it as much as I did.

Proebstle pulled me into the plot quickly, using well-developed characters and familiar language.

The book is described as follows:

“Minnesotan Nick Morgan overcomes the hardships of life during the Depression with the thrill of flying. The rush he shares with his soon-to-be wife, Martha, as they barnstorm small Midwestern towns offering plane rides for a dollar, forges a love for each other and a sense of freedom to last a lifetime. But in 1943, Nick must leave Martha, now pregnant, to become a WWII pilot in Alaska for the army’s newly formed Air Transport Command. In this uncharted and inaccessible landscape, Nick joins U.S. forces, who have set up a strategic defense position against Japan, and an Lend-Lease supply program that trains Soviet pilots with U.S. aircraft for their war with Germany.

The remoteness of Alaska also draws the attention of Manhattan Project scientists in New Mexico as a possible site for atomic bomb testing. When Nick Morgan and his Okie crop-duster copilot, Red, are tapped by the Manhattan Project for classified flying duty over the isolated Yukon Flats region, they have no idea that they will be caught up in a Soviet plot aimed at stealing top-secret bomb and test site development documents. After Nick’s plane goes down in a botched hijacking attempt by a Russian agent, all three crew members and eighteen military passengers are presumed dead by the U.S. military.”

Growing up I heard many stories of growing up post WWII and my Grandfather’s involvement as a soldier. My parents were also very involved in the Royal Canadian Legion which exposed me to many veteran’s stories. I found that reading Fatal Incident felt much like it did listening to the veterans telling their stories to me.

The historical facts within the book are accurate, the political situation well described, the geographical pictures are painted beautifully and the suspense is enough to keep me reaching for the book.

Without going into so much detail as to ruin the book for you, I will say that I was honestly surprised at how invested I became in the lives of Nick and Martha. With each letter Nick penned I fell further into the story.

Put Fatal Incident on your gift list friends, whether for an avid reader such as myself, a history buff or an aircraft enthusiast, this is a sure-fire hit!

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