Today’s #TalkTuesday interview is also our #TeaserTuesday and First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, all of which feature RED SKY BY CHRIS GOFF. A joint effort by Elise and I! Enjoy!
Red Sky by Chris Goff is a fast-paced thriller that has action, intrigue, sprinkled with technology. In this second instalment of the series, the featured character, Raisa Jordan, a U.S. Diplomatic Security Service agent, heads to Ukraine to investigate her father’s death. While there she is side-tracked when People’s Republic Flight 91 crashes, killing everyone on board. Notably, among the two-hundred dead passengers and flight crew, is George McClasky, a veteran DSS agent who was escorting a Chinese-American prisoner, accused of treason, home from China. She is assigned to investigate the cause of the crash, and quickly realises that the downing was no accident. The technology used to down the plane was part of a top-secret weapon being developed by several countries, including the United States. The Russians successfully tested the “railgun” on the plane and intend to use it against others in an attempt to take over the Ukraine. Her investigation draws the attention of Nye Davis of Reuters news agency, who agrees to help her uncover who is behind the crash and what are their motives.
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Elise Cooper: How did you get the idea for the story? A Diplomatic Security Agent is not very well known.
Chris Goff: I got the idea when I was in Israel with my daughter for two months. She needed medical treatment.
EC: What did you think of Israel?
CG: I loved my time there. I found it to be a very interesting and dynamic place. We stayed in Tel Aviv but traveled to Bethlehem, Tiberius, Masada, and the Dead Sea.
EC: The plot of your first book, Dark Waters, has the setting in Israel?
CG: I decided while in Israel that my main character Raisa Jordan is asked to investigate the assassination of her predecessor, and ends up protecting an eleven-year-old daughter of an American federal judge who has brought the girl to Israel for medical treatment.
EC: The setting for this book is the Ukraine?
CG: Yes. At the end of Dark Waters, I had Raisa decide to travel to the Ukraine to investigate the death of her father. This book, Red Sky, is a continuation on the backstory of Raisa.
EC: Did you ever travel to the Ukraine?
CG: I went there to get a feel for the setting with my youngest daughter who is a school teacher. As soon as we got off the plane someone asked if we want to go to the front lines? We could do it for $50 and the driver will have a gun, as well as a flak jacket and helmet for us. I said ‘ok,’ but my daughter put her foot down so we did not go.
EC: What were your impressions?
CG: In Kiev, at least half of the people are tied to Russia and are pro-Russian. Whereas, in Lviv, on the western side of the country, they identify with the Polish people. They would not acknowledge anyone who spoke Russian. They actually had in the markets Putin toilet paper.
EC: How did you come up with a DSS Agent?
CG: My daughter had a really close friend whose father is a DSS Agent. The stories he told, about what he did, fascinated me. I found out that this Agency is the law enforcement arm of the US Government overseas. They are not a spy agency like the CIA, nor are they military. They handle those who deal drugs, commit murders, and track down fugitives. They have to figure out where the bad guys are, many times through visas, and then they arrest them. Interestingly, they are not allowed to carry a gun unless the country they are in approves.
EC: How would you describe a DSS Agent?
CG: I found them to be cowboys. They are trained at the Federal Law Enforcement Academy (FLECT). A true story was told to me about one agent who went to a Sheik’s palace, banged on the door, and even though he and the two Marines he brought with him were extremely outnumbered, demanded that the person he sought after come with him. Another time, one decided to spy on terrorists in the middle of the night.
EC: How would you describe Raisa?
CG: Smart, loyal, a by the book person who believes in rules and order. She is dedicated and has been impacted by the loss of her father.
EC: Nye Davis does not seem to fit into Raisa’s views of journalists?
CG: I guess you are referring to her quote, ‘She viewed journalists like hyenas-offensive and sneaky predators feasting on the sensationalism of a moment…Too many times the real story was lost or ignored, usurped by moments taken out of context and distorted by the reporter’s own bias.’ Today you would call it fake news. Since Raisa is a law enforcement agent I wanted to have her with the feeling of a lot of others who shy away from the media. They feel journalists always put them under a microscope and they never worry about who gets hurt in the process. I think she falls for Nye because he is not just a journalist, but also a reserve in the Special Forces.
EC: Is the railgun true?
CG: It is being tested by the US Navy. Although in my book I had it working off a small battery which is only in the testing phase. The University of Texas is trying to get it to work off a truck battery. What I wanted to show is how it works. I explained in the book, that it has three parts. The gun is a measure of energy that can put out a force of a one-ton truck going at 160 mph hitting a brick wall. The electromagnetic pulse travels around the rails creating a magnetic field that launches the projectile. I think with thrillers things do not have to be real, just believable.
EC: What do you want readers to get out of the story?
CG: In both books I want them to understand that all the characters have to step outside of their comfort zone and need to trust each other. They need to rely on each other to solve the problem.
ABOUT THE BOOK:
Red Sky (Raisa Jordan Thriller #2)
When People’s Republic Flight 91 crashes in northeastern Ukraine with a U.S. diplomatic agent onboard, U.S. Diplomatic Security Service Agent Raisa Jordan is sent to investigate. The agent was escorting a prisoner home from Guangzhou, China, along with sensitive documents, and it quickly becomes apparent that the plane was intentionally downed. Was it to silence the two Americans onboard?
To avoid a diplomatic incident, Jordan must discover what the Americans knew that was worth killing hundreds to cover up. With Russia deeply entangled in the Ukraine and the possibility that China could be hiding reasons to bring down its own plane, tensions are high.
As international relations and even more lives hang in the balance, Jordan races to stop a new Cold War. Red Sky, Chris Goff’s pulse-pounding follow-up to Dark Waters, is yet another white-knuckle joyride for fans of Gayle Lynds.
• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! Everyone loves Teaser Tuesday
First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros
I’m also taking part in First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros
Every Tuesday Vicki @ I’d Rather Be at the Beach now hosts First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, where readers share the first paragraph of a book that they are reading or plan to read soon.
QUESTION: What’s the last book you’ve read that features a plane crash?
Looking forward to visiting your blogs and seeing what your Teaser Tuesday and First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros, are this week!
Luv Sassy x