ExFeds, former Federal prosecutor Diane Munson and former undercover Federal Special Agent David Munson draw on their true-life experiences in this debut suspense novel about Special Agent Eva Montanna, whose twin sister died at the Pentagon on 9/11. Eva dedicates her career to avenge her death while investigating Emile Jubayl, a member of Eva’s church and CEO of Helpers International, who is accused of using his aid organization to funnel money to El Samoud, head of the Armed Revolutionary Cause, and successor to Al Qaeda. Family relationships are tested in this fast-paced, true-to-life legal thriller about the men and women who are racing to defuse the ticking time bomb of international terrorism.
I just admitted earlier this week that I am flying through books like crazy lately because I belong to a few different reading groups and like to participate as much as I can but lately it seems I’ve been getting a bit bogged down. Instead of not providing readers with timely reviews of these books, I’ve decided to enlist the services of my family. In particular, today’s review has been submitted to me on a very official looking typewritten sheet of paper by my favorite aunt, Aunt Barbara (I think I might have to pay her something like buy her dinner next time I visit.)
As an aside though, the reason that Aunt Barbara was chosen for this book review is because she’s the one that made me aware of authors, Diane and David Munson at the start. I was visiting her for the weekend and she mentioned something about these authors being at a local church and how I should check out their books. I searched the internet, found their website and shot them an email. A couple days later they said they’d be sending me a book for my review. When the book arrived, I flipped through it and realized that it looked like a book that would demand more of my attention than your standard “chick lit”, so I asked Aunt Barbara if she’d take a shot and she agreed.
So, without anything further from me, here’s Aunt Barbara’s review:
“Although this isn’t the type of book I normally read, I am glad I had the opportunity to read this one.It certainly made me more aware of the danger and real possibility of an attack on America by terrorists.
The prologue of this book introduces us to terrorists members of Armed Revolutionary Cause (“ARC”), whose leader is El Samound. He seeks revenge because when he was a little boy a British soldier told him to stop his donkey cart and when he didn’t, the soldier sliced up his face with a sword. We are introduced to Federal Agent, Eva Montana, who gets appointed as Special Supervisory Agent because her boss falls off a ladder. Eva’s assignment is to stop the ARC, and while investigating she discovers that a member of her church, Emile Jubayl, is suspected of financially aiding the ARC. They suspect that Mr. Jubayl, who is the CEO of a religious organization, Helpers International, is using his company as a front.
Eva devotes her life to seeking revenge for the death of her twin sister, Jillie at the World Trade Center on September 11. Eva has lost faith and only attends church when her husband, Scott (also a federal agent) forces her to attend. Her mission in life is to find and arrest two kinds of Americans: those who give money to terrorists and those who use legitimate business to aid them.
Suicide bombers hit British and American embassies. Meanwhile, while pouring footers at the World Trade Center, workers find strategically placed explosives with the times set for 011 dedication ceremony. Workers remove them and agents learn that they were shipped to the Grilled Onion restaurant as replacement parts.
Operation Money Change is implemented and they arrest Farouk Handi, who masquerades as a franchise director, but who really launders money for the ARC. After Farouk’s arrest he becomes an informant and provides Eva and Deputy Trenton Nash much useful information about ARC.
Emile’s son, George is arrested at a protest. Trenton becomes obsessed with proving Emile and his family are terrorists, that he commits many illegal acts to prove their guilt. He searches through their garbage and a neighbor tells Emile’s wife, Sari, about seeing someone looking through their garbage. Sari thinks it is happening because of George and she writes a letter indicating that they were terrorists, but corrects it at the end of the letter. She is angry and wraps dead fish around the letter. Trenton finds the letter and tears off the bottom and uses it as evidence.
Emile’s mother dies and he and George try to go out of the country for her funeral and they are arrested on the plane. This begins the full blown investigation against them.
Faith is restored, relationships are healed and most important, a person accepts Jesus as his Savior. Forgiveness is given in a case where the reader has to question himself and say, ‘could I forgive if this happened to me?’
This book is action-packed from the beginning to the end. I didn’t want to elaborate on the investigation, but the hurt and pain of this family is unbelievable. I will tell you this: Eva and her team capture El Samound, and Emile is found innocent, however at the end of the book, you will be wondering if he really is innocent.”
According to their Official Website, we learned that after a millionaire drug-dealer wrote a memoir that became a movie staring Johnny Depp, Diane Munson decided the good guys wearing white hats should be the ones to write memoirs. A former Federal prosecutor, she asked David, a former undercover DEA Special Agent, to join her in writing about David’s arrest of Johnny Depp’s character in Chicago and other criminals in what the Munsons deem “high velocity suspense”. Now, this husband and wife writing team reveal the thrills of back alley deals and legal drama in their intriguing suspense novels.
Diane Munson is an attorney of more than twenty-five years who transitioned from her law practice and writing briefs for judges to weaving inspiring fiction for readers. David Munson was a Special Agent with the NCIS and with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). As an undercover agent, he infiltrated international drug smuggling organizations. David also served on Capitol Hill as a Congressional Fellow for the Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations where he investigated the government’s efforts to co-opt foreign spies and other classified military operations.
More recently Diane flew solo in a law practice specializing in family law. She and David also worked together as Christian mediators and have seen that justice and forgiveness are possible no matter the circumstances. As they travel to research and cloister to write, they thank The Lord for the blessings of faith and family. A verse they hold dear is Jeremiah 29:11, “I know the plans I have for you,” declares The Lord, “Plans to give you hope and a future.”
He Nailed Them, She Jailed Them
As stated above, I was provided with a complimentary paperback copy of this book directly from the authors, Diane and David Munson, in exchange for my honest review.