Review of ‘Permanent Interests’

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When the American ambassador to Italy, a bungling political appointee with a dubious personal reputation, is brutally murdered in Rome, the Washington bureaucracy is quick to label it a politically-motivated terrorist killing. But, mid-level diplomat Bob Innes, who is thrust into the middle of the mess, thinks it’s a different thing altogether, and in his efforts to prove his thesis, finds himself targeted by bureaucrats attempting to cover up malfeasance, and the Russian mob.

Permanent Interests by best-selling author James Bruno is a compelling story of bureaucracy at its worst, the back-room deals that make Washington the quagmire it is, and how crime and political greed intersect. Underlying non-stop, graphic action there is also a story of human dignity, decency, and love, in a story that will keep you reading from page one.

While I found the description of the Marine Security Guards who stand watch at our embassies a bit off—the commander of the Marine guards is usually a senior sergeant, not a major as Bruno depicts in his story—the story pins the tail very accurately on the bureaucrats in Washington and elsewhere who are often more concerned with their next promotion than in actually doing something useful. Bruno writes about these things with credibility and a ring of authenticity. Sure, it’s fiction. After all, it is a political thriller. But, take it from someone who has worked there, it’s not all that far from the truth. A five star thriller!

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