|About the Book|
Synopsis: The naked, murdered body of an unknown black man is discovered on the muddy banks of Beaver Creek by a young mother, Gail, whos returning from an evening of her affair with Clinton Foster. Clinton, a government agent who defected from theMoreSynopsis: The naked, murdered body of an unknown black man is discovered on the muddy banks of Beaver Creek by a young mother, Gail, whos returning from an evening of her affair with Clinton Foster. Clinton, a government agent who defected from the service to return to his roots, is foreman on the WEBY/U ranch. W. Ebert Bellwether, the owner, a rabid Republican billionaire, buys up hundreds of thousands of acres of open rangeland -- which Clinton believes to be a tax write-off. ---- With the help of the US Bureau of Land Management and the administration in Washington, Bellwether acquires mineral rights on his own land as well as on adjoining ranches. His secret goal: methane gas. Priceless wilderness areas will be raped and New Mexicos Coal Countys water table reduced to mud -- a replay of the Jonah Field / Powder River fiasco in Wyoming. When the truth breaks, Clinton is accused by Gail of duplicity. ---- The local godfather, Valentino Peggler -- silent owner of the bank, radio station, newspaper and most rentals in the town of Radiant, the seat of Coal County -- finds his fiefdom threatened. Calling in old debts from his days in organized crime, he sends a man into Bellwethers fortified mansion outside the nations capital. In addition to copying Bellwethers files pertaining to Coal County, Pegglers agent videotapes W. Ebert, his wife and a number of Washingtons top leaders in group sexual practices. Peggler keeps the DVD in silence. ---- Gail, unaware of Valentinos secret knowledge, is horrified at the thought of the fragile New Mexico landscape being destroyed by coal-bed methane drilling rigs. Planting seeds of revolution, Gail enlists the help of Tony Mangino, an old Italian rancher and Valentinos long time friend. Kate Dawson, a demolition expert during the first Iraqi war, Desert Storm, joins the ranks. Clinton, furious with himself for being taken in by Bellwether, finds hes also being tailed by agents he once worked with. His life, like the life of the murdered black man, is in imminent danger. He joins Gails cause. ---- An old-time range war ensues: western-style shootouts, stampeding longhorns and exploding coal-bed methane wells all join the montage of old-fashioned frontier justice, murder and mayhem. At its conclusion Valentino confronts Bellwether with the DVD: blackmail works on the high plains of New Mexico as well as in Washington. The revolution is won on the explosive early morning of the Fourth of July, 2007. ---- About the Author: To support his writing habit, Zeller works in the film industry. In addition to acting in thirty or more films, Zeller coordinated construction for Dances With Wolves, Medicine Man, Man On Fire and Crazy Heart directed by Ed Harris. He was Art Director for Crazy Heart, Beowulf and Highlander-Endgame, both filmed in Romania. ---- Zeller homesteaded in Alaska. With his family he spent many years in Mexico. He now divides his time between the ranch in Tinaja, New Mexico and La Veta, Colorado with his wife Evelyn and daughters Shannon and Kevyn. ---- Also by Zeller: The Coordinator, a novel of the film industry set in Mexico, and Firedamp, a well received historical novel set on the Colorado / New Mexico border in the late eighteen, early nineteen hundreds.