Tuesday, January 23, 2018

The Night Trade, Out Today!

Today’s the day for The Night Trade, featuring “absolutely first-rate thriller” (New York Times) character Seattle sex crimes detective Livia Lone and former Marine sniper Dox!



I had a blast writing this book. It was an opportunity for Livia to delve more deeply into her past—and to try to complete her revenge. For Dox to continue the emotional and moral journey he began in the short story The Khmer Kill. And most of all, for these two different and dangerous characters to collide and then struggle to figure out a way to trust each other under the worst circumstances.

And if you’re in the Bay Area, come by Kepler’s at 7:30 tonight for the launch, and support your local bookstore.

Thanks and enjoy!
Barry

Livia Lone is back.

For sex-crimes detective Livia Lone, a position with a government anti-trafficking task force is a chance to return to Thailand to ferret out Rithisak Sorm, the kingpin behind her own childhood ordeal.

But after a planned takedown in a nightclub goes 

violently awry, Livia discovers that she's not the only one hunting Sorm. Former marine sniper Dox has a score to settle, too, and working together is the only way to take Sorm out.

Livia and Dox couldn't be less alike. But they share a single-minded creed: the law has to serve justice. And if it doesn't, justice has to be served another way.

What they don't know is that in threatening Sorm, they're also threatening a far-reaching conspiracy—one involving the highest levels of America's own intelligence apparatus. It turns out that killing Sorm just might be the easy part. The real challenge will be payback from his protectors.

Praise for Livia Lone:

An Amazon Best Book of 2016

Kirkus Reviews Best Fiction of 2016 Selection

An Amazon Best Book of the Month: Mystery, Thriller, & Suspense Category

“An absolutely first-rate thriller...Emotionally true at each beat.” New York Times Book Review

“An explosive thriller that plunges into the sewer of human smuggling.…Filled with raw power, [Livia Lone] may be the darkest thriller of the year.” —Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“[An] exciting thriller...Eisler keeps a firm hand on the throttle of what could be the first of a rewarding series.” Publishers Weekly

“Livia is a complex and sympathetic character...Readers of hard-boiled fiction, heavily tinted toward noir, may see in Livia something of Carol O’Connell’s Kathy Mallory, also a cop with an abuse-filled past and an appetite for revenge.” Booklist

“Readers may be reminded of Stieg Larsson’s beloved Lisbeth Salander when they meet Livia Lone, and will be totally riveted by the story of this woman on a mission to right the wrongs in her past.” —Bookish

“Eisler offers up an astonishingly raw tale that is dark and disturbing, but one that you will want to finish. Both the compelling narrative and the fascinating—yet seriously flawed—heroine are indications that Eisler is at the top of his game.” RT Book Reviews

“Barry Eisler is back, and then some. [Livia Lone] may be the best and strongest work of his storied career…Livia Lone moves like a freight train…Jump on what appears to be the start of a terrific new series.” —bookreporter

“This electric thriller...keeps you riveted to the end.” —Authorlink
“…a literary home run in every respect…Livia Lone [reaches] a whole new level...” —Providence Journal

“Former CIA agent Barry Eisler's latest sexy cyber thriller follows Seattle PD sex-crimes detective Livia Lone, who knows the monsters she hunts...the story is riveting.” —Boing Boing

“You won’t be able to tear yourself away as the story accelerates into a Tarantino-worthy climax and when you’re left gasping in the wake of its gut-wrenching vigilante justice, you’ll belatedly realize you learned a lot about a social travesty that gets far too little attention…Livia Lone is a harrowing tale with a conscience.” —Chicago Review of Books

“Everything you could want in a great thriller—a badass main character, an emotional and suspenseful plot, lots of high stakes, gritty murders and well-written action scenes.” —Night Owl Reviews

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

"Child Prostitute" Is A Horrible Lie

If you follow my political blogging, you know I believe nomenclature is critical (data collection vs bulk surveillance, targeted killings vs assassinations, surge vs escalation, EITs instead of torture, detainees vs prisoners, interventions vs war...and on and on).

This is Andrew Vachss on why "child prostitute" is a horrible, propagandistic lie. Read it--and if you see this kind of terminology online somewhere, forward Vachss's post for the writer's consideration. Most people don't adopt shitty terminology out of malice; they just absorb it thoughtlessly through osmosis, then parrot it until someone corrects them. That's what seems to happen to me, at any rate, and I'm grateful to Vachss for bringing this kind of thing to my attention.

Friday, September 08, 2017

The Dark Files: Tonight at 10:00

About a year ago, I was invited to co-host The Dark Files, a special the History Channel was planning that would focus on the Montauk legends--allegations about US government experiments on unwitting human subjects, carried out at Camp Hero, a now-abandoned military base on Montauk, Long Island.


It wasn't a topic I knew much about, and I doubted we'd be able to prove or disprove the legends, which range from the completely believable (mind-control experiments like MKUltra) to the way-out-there (time travel and aliens). But I was curious about what it would be like to make a television special, and intrigued by the opportunity to co-host with independent filmmaker Christoper Garentano, writer and director of The Montauk Chronicles, and with investigative reporter Steve Volk, author of Fringeology: How I Tried to Explain Away the Unexplainable--And Couldn't. Most of all, I was attracted by the opportunity to use the Montauk legends as a vehicle to explore the hidden history of human experimentation in America.

What's that, you say? Human experimentation? In America?

The question itself reveals the problem. Most Americans would have difficulty believing that our own government could behave in ways we exclusively associate with Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan's infamous Unit 731. But if we allow ourselves to be seduced by this comforting--and false--belief, we increase the likelihood that our own society could engage in such barbarities in the future, as we have in the past.

Because yes, the US government has allowed syphilis to proceed unchecked in hundreds of poor black men it told were receiving treatment, to see what happens when the disease is untreated. It has subjected prisoners to gruesome dermatological agents and hallucinogens, to study the effects chemical warfare agents. It has fed radioactive material to mentally handicapped children to learn about the impact of nuclear fallout.

And these are just a few examples. There is much, much more.

One of the things I find most disturbing about the history of human experimentation in America is that the experimenters are always the cream of American academia and science--people who doubtless look in the mirror and see only paragons of morality looking back. And their victims are always helpless and marginalized: Prisoners. Children in orphanages. The poorest minorities. The mentally ill.

So the question about Montauk isn't whether human experimentation happened. The question is whether human experimentation also happened there.

If America's dark chapters prove anything, they prove that when no one is looking, the wealthy and powerful will prey on the poor and powerless. These experiments were always conducted in secret, after all. Meaning whatever their own rationalizations, the people who carried them out understood intuitively that the wider society would not approve.

It follows that our best defense against a recrudescence of these horrors is to shine a light on the darker truths of our own history--and our own humanity. I hope The Dark Filespremiering tonight on the History Channel at 10:00 eastern time, will be an important contribution to that effort.

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

John Rain in Zero Sum!

Hi all, I’m excited to announce that the new John Rain novel—ZERO SUM, is out today! This is another prequel, again set in Tokyo ten years following the events of Graveyard of Memories:
Returning to Tokyo in 1982 after a decade of mercenary work in the Philippines, a young John Rain learns that the killing business is now controlled by Victor, a half-Russian, half-Japanese sociopath who has ruthlessly eliminated all potential challengers. Victor gives Rain a choice: kill a government minister or die a grisly death. But the best route to the minister is through his gorgeous Italian wife, Maria, a route that puts Rain on a collision course not only with Victor but with the shadowy forces behind the Russian’s rise to dominance—and the longings of Rain’s own conflicted heart.
It’s a battle between kingpin and newcomer, master and apprentice, a zero-sum contest that can only end with one man dead and the other the world’s foremost assassin.

I’m already hard at work on the follow-up to Livia Lone, out in January 2018, so alas there wasn’t time to tour for Zero Sum. Just one signing—Thursday, June 29, 7:30 PM at Kepler’s in Menlo Park.

Thanks for all your support over the years, and I hope you enjoy Rain’s latest adventure.

Monday, January 30, 2017

Predictably, ISIS is cheering Trump's Muslim ban (actually, not just predictably. Predicted). Yes, I know, it's not really a Muslim ban. You don't have to convince me. Convince the people ISIS is recruiting with it.

It's not just that targeting refugees, immigrants, and green card holders based on their religion is capricious and cruel. It's that it's dangerous. Once again, the people wrapping themselves most ostentatiously in the flag of national security are the ones who create the most hazards--to the citizenry and to the republic.

When you're about to do the very thing your enemy most ardently hopes you'll do, it doesn't mean ipso facto your move is dumb. But it ought to give you pause, at least.

Friday, January 13, 2017

Defense Against Foreign Danger; Instruments of Tyranny at Home

Consider the way tools of national (in)security policy initially deployed abroad inevitably find their way home: bulk surveillance, black sites, torture, police militarization.

Now consider that one of the CIA’s long-practiced core competencies is undermining regimes it deems threatening or otherwise unfavorable.

James Madison said, The means of defense against foreign danger historically have become the instruments of tyranny at home. Is it possible he was on to something?

Nah, thats crazy. Only Putin could ever interfere with the sanctity of American democracy.