Turn Loose the Dragons
Comments from George C. Chesbro
After the modest success of the first three Mongos, I was approached by a different publisher and invited to join the stable of writers he was putting together to establish a new hardcover division at his paperback house. It was a time when the publishing business was booming, before the massive consolidations that have taken place in the last two decades, and many paperback houses, heretofore separate entities, were combining with hardcover houses, or starting their own hardcover divisions, as was the case here. The gentleman knew I was quite happy with my present publisher, and he asked me what it would take to get me to come over. Since I was still forced to teach to earn a living, I replied, "retire me." I came up with the proposal for Dragons, it was accepted, and I was indeed offered an advance that would enable me to quit teaching and concentrate all my efforts on writing the book. The novel was to be published first in hardcover, and the following year in paperback. I was assured that both my novel and I would be heavily promoted, and the editor-in-chief of the house was to be assigned as my editor. Voila. In a year or so I was to become a best-selling, brand name author, a regular on the book tours and lecture circuits, and a frequent guest on television talk shows.

As you may have noticed, things did not exactly work out that way. Almost overnight (or so it seemed to me), the publishing business went into first a nosedive, then a tailspin. Plans by my publisher to create a hardcover division were abandoned. The day after my contract arrived in the mail, the editor-in-chief---my editor---was fired. My book became an "orphan" with nobody at the house to look after and nurture it, one of the worst fates that can happen to an accepted manuscript. About the only contribution my new editor made to the manuscript was to pressure me to change the original locale, Castro's Cuba, to a fictional country. To this day I am unable to fathom why he thought this change was needed.

More than a year passed, and for a time I was afraid the book would not be published at all. But it was finally released as an original paperback, with no promotion at all, and it "dropped through the cracks" like a stone and disappeared from sight. I have always believed that this is one of my best works, and am most grateful that it now has a second chance at being available to, and perhaps enjoyed, by readers.


HE is the bitter, deadly efficient ex-CIA assassin.

SHE is his beautiful and reluctant partner---and one-time lover.

FOR HIM, it is the chance to strike it very rich and settle a highly personal score.

FOR HER, it is a matter of once again serving her country---and starring as an unsuspecting pawn in a mad gamemaster's ultimate gamble.

ON A CARIBBEAN BATTLEGROUND, they will step to the brink of a holocaust that will leave one survivor---or none at all....

Copyright © 2018, Hunter Goatley. All rights reserved.
Last updated 25-MAR-2018 21:42:25.40.