Ted Denton’s explosive debut novel is an exhilarating action thriller pitching the privileged, seductive world of a professional sports agent against a backdrop of political double-dealing, corporate corruption and brutal violence.
A young Daniel Ratchet arrives in Spain to begin his dream job as a golf agent on the European Tour. In London, the Russian Rublex Corporation, with its history mired in ‘Vory‘ mafia criminality, is working on a huge gas deal off the Falkland Islands with the British government. Veteran civil servant Derek Hemmings is tasked to rubber-stamp the deal for the Foreign Office.
But things are not what they seem … With the help of Wallace, a cantankerous old golf coach, Daniel discovers match fixing, fraud and corruption on the Tour, all at the seeming behest of Rublex. A thorn in the Russians’ side, Daniel is kidnapped before he can expose the truth. Wallace, needing help, contacts an old army buddy who deploys violent loose cannon Tom Hunter on a mission to save him.
A tense race against time ensues, both to rescue Daniel from the clutches of the Vory and for Hemmings in Whitehall to prove that the deadly deal is corrupt. The stakes are high. As the body count mounts will the volatile Hunter reveal the truth or will he be too late?
Dead or alive, the truth always comes at a cost.
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And now Ted Denton with:
Tom Hunter is the violent protagonist of the Ted Denton thriller Tight Lies. A blunt instrument deployed by The Unit, a private kidnap-rescue organisation assembled by the shadowy Charles Hand who is known ubiquitously as the Hand of God, Hunter is a powerful, larger-than-life character to write. Relentless, honest, unpredictable, good humoured, violent and consistently flawed. He represents the extremes that can exist in all of us, serving perhaps as an exemplar of the fragility of the common human condition. As a consequence, there is a relished freedom that accompanies writing this character. He is not afraid of the consequences of his savage actions nor ashamed by his often-puerile attitudes which may often be incongruous with a decent, moral and politically correct society. The writing can reflect this. Hunter is a visceral character. He is the anti-hero that the reader can at once find repellent yet remains inexorably drawn towards, unable to look away from, compelled to know more. He straddles the line of right and wrong and that incongruity can make the reader feel uncomfortable as they have to work to understand how they do actually feel about him versus the response that their own relationship with society demands of them.
Despite accepting what he is, at a base level, with an overt bloodlust and rampant carnal appetites for sex, drugs, coffee and alcohol, Tom has a ready, often self-depreciating sense of humour and underlying intelligence which belie the abhorrent machismo and unedifying sexist behaviour – for which there is no excuse given.
He wears his manifold mistakes and challenges with an uncurrent of bravado. Whilst Hunter displays self-awareness, embracing a relentless torrent of painful introspection through the recognition of his own personal demons, it cannot be said that he truly likes himself. Nevertheless, he embraces his fierce capabilities and understands what drives him. The deep contradictions that ride as an unwelcome passenger with all of us, however much we may battle against them, are evident in his ever-present discomfort with normality. Hunter is haunted by persistent waking nightmares left over from a life lived absorbed in so much violence, addiction, and of his true love brutally ripped from him as a consequence of his own bad choices. The disconnection he feels from belonging within a civilised society is exacerbated by his pervasive feeling that he doesn’t actually deserve that privilege. Instead Tom clings onto his sanity by his ragged fingertips and a pervasive belief that if he just keeps moving forward relentlessly and at least makes an attempt to show some signs of conventional social norms and interaction, then he might just get away with it unnoticed. Tom Hunter’s lust for extremes in all things is simply perpetuated by this overriding need to feel something relatable. To feel alive. The daily torment he endures from the terror of his retrograde memories may serve to generate the unwelcome illusion to him that he is already residing within a version of Hell itself. The physiological responses that he craves to pain, adrenaline and high octane risk-taking therefore, which are induced by the human body’s real-world stimuli and response mechanisms, serve to prove to Tom Hunter and to his sense of self, that he is still very much alive and kicking. And he is determined to make a dent in the world in order to prove that to himself.
Thank you to Ted Denton for being featured on my blog today!