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- Extraordinary Retribution - Erec Stebbins Blog Tour
Friday, 10 January 2014
Welcome to the Extraordinary Retribution tour!
Find out all the information on Erec Stebbins' new political thriller that readers are calling 'dark' and 'engrossing', plus enter the tour giveaway for the chance to win yourself a signed copy of this chilling novel.
What they say:
'Sometimes evil is not born of madness, but madness of evil."
Know Yourself Before the Fire
Guest Post by Erec Stebbins
The fragility of trying to be someone you are not is rarely a point mentioned in the ever-growing modern discussions of “being yourself.” Most of these “life-coach” talks concentrate on how trying to be someone you are not, living for the ideas others have or wish for you, or running from one’s true nature, damage the “psyche”, stunt emotional growth, impair deep relationships, hinder life fulfillment, etc. In other words, these discussions are all about how you can be happier/better/free when you embrace your inner You. Of course, if that inner You is a sadist or murderer, the strategy reveals certain limitations. And while those may seem extreme examples, the reality is that human beings are on a broad spectrum from Hannibal Lector to Gandhi. Therefore, it is rarely simply an “either/or” regarding “being yourself.” We all have aspects of our personalities that for various reasons we may or may not want to deny and live as if we did not have them. However, there are some people, perhaps many, who turn their backs in a dramatic way on core, deep elements of themselves. Regardless of whether this is good or bad for the individual and society, the often-ignored reality is that it is a very fragile equilibrium. When such personalities are truly tested in the fire of life events, the layers of acting and self-coaching often melt first. Then they begin to think and act outside of those designed constraints, more effortlessly, more immediately, more honestly, and more true to themselves. For good and ill. In my new thriller, Extraordinary Retribution, Father Francisco Lopez is one such person. All his life he has contrasted himself to his brother who was a sports and military hero. He eschewed retaliation, turned his back on the inherent violence and action in himself, and sought to become a man freed from those things. He turned to God, to emulate Christ, to turn the other cheek and pray for his enemies. Until his brother was viciously murdered. When Father Lopez stumbled upon the mutilated remains of his brother in his family’s cabin, all those layers of saintliness that he had sheltered himself within began to shatter. A long suppressed personality began to stir and overwhelm him. When he partners with a rogue CIA agent to investigate the murder, as they begin to uncover a conspiracy in the United States government that seems to have no bottom, and as those dark forces push the pair to the edge of survival and sanity, he undergoes a transformation that all his years of restraint cannot prevent. In the end, the two-sides of his personality – his empathy and decency, his anger and ability to commit violence – confront each other before an adversity that has brought the CIA to its knees. His choices will determine the bloody climax of the novel, and shape the remainder of his life. And his dilemma poses a question for all of us: when the impossible test comes, who will we turn out to be?
Erec Stebbins is a biomedical researcher who writes political and international thrillers, science fiction, narrated storybooks, and more.
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