Wednesday, July 19, 2023

The Bitter Past by Bruce Borgos Book Review

About the Book:

Porter Beck is the sheriff in the high desert of Nevada, north of Las Vegas. Born and raised there, he left to join the Army, where he worked in Intelligence, deep in the shadows in far off places. Now he's back home, doing the same lawman's job his father once did, before his father started to develop dementia. All is relatively quiet in this corner of the world, until an old, retired FBI agent is found killed. He was brutally tortured before he was killed and clues at the scene point to a mystery dating back to the early days of the nuclear age. If that wasn't strange enough, a current FBI agent shows up to help Beck's investigation.

In a case that unfolds in the past (the 1950s) and the present, it seems that a Russian spy infiltrated the nuclear testing site and now someone is looking for that long-ago, all-but forgotten person, who holds the key to what happened then and to the deadly goings on now.

My Review:

We usually see Cold War spy or espionage novels with an international setting. What a treat to have one set on American soil with a county sheriff as our investigative hero. And Porter Beck is a good hero. He is down to earth yet smart at outwitting the villain. I really like his sister too. She is one tough and capable woman.

The plot is very interesting, combining nuclear testing in the 1950s with a score to settle today. Borgos has done a good job of weaving past events into a current situation of suspense. I liked learning about the nuclear testing and the effects on the local population. The fictional possibility of Soviet infiltration was all too scary. There are plenty of surprising plot twists near the end as we find out people are not who they claim to be.

I enjoyed this dual time novel of espionage and suspenseful intrigue. I like Beck as a hero and will be watching for him in future novels from Borgos. Please bring along sister Brinley, super heroine.

My rating: 4/5 stars.

About the Author:

Bruce Borgos
lives and writes from the Nevada desert where he works hard every day to prove his high school guidance counselor had good instincts when he said “You’ll never be an astronaut.” He has a degree in political science which mostly served to dissuade him from a career in law while at the same time tormenting his wife with endless questions about how telephones work. When not writing, you can usually find him at the local wine store. He is the author of 
The Bitter Past. Photo credit: Pam Borgos.

Macmillan Publishers, 320 pages.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.

(My star ratings: 5-I love it, 4-I like it, 3-It's OK, 2-I don't like it, 1-I hate it.)

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