Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Welcome, Jeanette Windle, author of Congo Dawn!

Award-winning novelist and missions journalist Jeanette Windle has lived in six countries and traveled in more than 30, authored 16 fiction titles, and mentors writers on five continents.  Jeanette's detailed research and writing is so realistic it has prompted government agencies to question if she received classified information.

When a multinational corporation with unlimited funds hires on a private military company with unbridled power, how far might they be willing to go with the planet's ultimate "conflict mineral" up for grabs? Especially in a Congolese rainforest where governmental accountability is only too cheaply for sale. 

A veteran in handling corruption and conspiracy, former Marine lieutenant Robin Duncan has never had any trouble  discerning good guys from bad. But when her security team is sent to track down an insurgent killer, Robin faces a man who broke her trust years ago and discovers that gray areas extend deeper into the jungle than she anticipated.

As a vicious global conspiracy emerges, run by brutal men who don’t leave witnesses alive, Robin must decide if there is anyone left she can trust. And where is God in the suffering and injustice? How is it possible followers of Yesu (Jesus) caught in the crossfire can still rejoice when everything they hold dear is ripped away? 

Jeanette, where did you get your inspiration for Congo Dawn?

For the story's actual suspense thread, I've had opportunity to witness what a multinational corporation is capable of in dark corners of the Third World when no one is watching (a personal experience in itself too unbelievable to write up as fiction). In Africa as elsewhere, both the protective and striking arm of such corporations has historically been hired foreign mercenaries (the British East India Company's conquest of India is the ultimate example).

But today's post-9/11 private military corporations are vastly different than their predecessors, possessing more fire power than the average country. What struck me was the lack of accountability to any outside oversight beyond whichever paid-off regional warlord currently holds power. Just how far might a multinational corporation with the striking force of a private army be willing to go with the planet's ultimate "conflict mineral" up for grabs? Coming up with one very plausible possibility birthed Congo Dawn.

On a deeper spiritual level, Congo Dawn addresses the age-old question of how a world filled with such darkness, injustice and pain can possibly be the creation of a God of love. How can followers of Yesu [Jesus]  in the bleakness of an Ituri rainforest conflict zone or any other dark corner of this planet take seriously a Scriptural mandate to rejoice in their suffering [James 1:2; I Peter 4:13]? What value beyond our own comprehension might human suffering possibly hold that a loving Creator God permits it to continue?

What don't most people know about you?

The first one-day writers conference I taught was exclusively to female millionaire aristocrats, virtually all connected to the cocaine cartels. The organizer was actually the "grand dame" of one of US counternarcotics 'most wanted' drug mafias (it was a shock to have her name turn up on the DEA watch list when I was researching my next title in Miami!) Of course at the time, I didn't know who they were other than members of Bolivia's ruling power junta. As a journalist with a handful of published fiction titles, and more significantly fluent in Spanish, I'd received the invite through a mutual expatriate contact. What was their interest in such a conference other than the sheer boredom of their Paris Hilton lifestyle? Some were ambitious to increase their media influence through international journalism; others to write their own memoirs. The event's five-star hotel accommodations and air-freighted refreshments alone could have fed every street kid in the city for a week. That experience and its organizer actually found their way (suitably revised) into the pages of my first adult suspense title, CrossFire, set in the international counternarcotics war in Bolivia.

Wow, fascinating stuff, Jeanette! Thanks for sharing with my readers.

For information about Congo Dawn or to order a copy, log onto



chaplaindebbie said...

I think I entered a contest to win this book. It sounds very interesting.

Eileen Rife said...

Wonderful, Debbie. Yes, Jeanette is a seasoned writer with vast first-hand experience to back up her stories.

"Curtains" by Guest Blogger, Michelle Archer

Have you ever felt like your world is being rocked, that someone is pulling a rug out from under you, and you are struggling just to kee...