"Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely"

“Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely”. The enormity of this statement, as it relates to Stephen P Vincent’s new novel, State of Emergency should never be overlooked.

While this is a work of fiction, the scenario the author puts before us is not beyond the realm of possibilities. That should scare even thrill seekers.

Throughout time, there have always been those whose intentions make sense in their own minds and so they strive to show others that they have “the solution”. This is such a story.

It is not a thriller in the truest form, but it will keep you in suspense and on the edge of your seat. It draws from recent history but takes you on a journey to a “what if” future scenario.

The book starts in America – a post 9/11 America where the word terrorist has become the fear of the day and it doesn’t take much for the population to close in on itself. Everyone is looking for someone to make them feel safe. A perfect atmosphere for a seemingly well-meaning individual to take advantage.

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FEMA is a non-military arm of the federal government whose work is to assist people in a crisis. After hurricane Katrina devastated New Orleans, America was scathing in the assessment of the agency’s response, or lack thereof. Americans screamed “too little, too late”.

In this novel, the people are looking for more from FEMA when attacks come one after another. The President does not want to be seen as weak, but none of the normal channels seems able to find and control the group committing these attacks. The citizens are living in fear and want results so the President looks for someone who can propose a solution to stop the terrorists and restore calm in the country. Enter Richard Hall. The perfect man for the job.

This is a gripping, well-written story theorizing what can go wrong when all power goes to one governmental department. There are many issues in the USA, but the citizens know that the government is divided in a way that no one can assume complete control. This book tests that assumption.

This is neither a thriller, nor a mystery, nor even Sci-Fi. It is only fiction in that it hasn’t yet happened … but could it?

Read it and decide for yourself. I know what my conclusion is. Would not hesitate to recommend it to anyone.

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State of Emergency, by Stephen P Vincent published by Momentum