A military thriller about oil exploration and international conspiracy, from the author of Edge of Honor (1999), etc.
Divorced Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Michael Stuart hopes to retire in 18 months and take up ocean cruising. Indeed, we first meet him battling a force-five hurricane that drives his sailboat into Cienfuegos, a Cuban harbor. Not a good place to be, since Stuart is a mid-echelon Pentagon technician/bureaucrat who figures out how petroleum, oil, and lubricants are to be delivered in case of a war in two major theaters. Meanwhile, L.J. Ellis, CEO of Ray Tex Oil—a woman who devours rooms by force of pure charisma (she’s 38 but looks 28 and wears no bra)—fights off the environmentalists by pretending to join them while she keeps secret her prospecting team’s discovery of a deep oil lake bigger than Saudi Arabia. It lies inside the territorial waters of Cuba, a fact that must also be kept secret or Castro will develop the field, drive down world oil prices, and sink Ray Tex as well as all the other oil companies. Or so L.J. pretends until she can get the Cuban concession. Does the presence in Cienfuegos of Air Force oil supply officer Stuart, now digging into US oil exploration, mean that the Pentagon knows about the big oil lake, whose existence is all part of a secret plan L.J. terms “The Trojan Sea”? Soon L.J. is plotting Castro’s removal—not by assassination, which would make him a martyr, but by somehow disgracing him. What will the Cubans in Miami with their blocks of Semtex blow up, aside from a Ray Tex fertilizer plant? And will L.J. bed Stuart?
Richly rounded characters on a ride as swift and surely aimed as a guided missile.