August Murder creates a fast-paced thriller about terrorism, murder, politics, and one man who doesn't believe the report of events surrounding his son's death in Puerto Rico, and who assembles a posse of lawyers and investigators to uncover the truth.
The story is actually based on real life - there was such an event in Puerto Rico. Two young men were murdered by police agents on one of the country’s mountains, and said agents were later detained at the insistence of the Puerto Rico Legislature, investigated, tried, and found guilty of police wrongdoing (despite other probes that exonerated them, conducted by the FBI and police agencies).
Although August Murder is loosely based on these events, it adds drama, thriller elements, and suspense to wind Puerto Rico's real-world culture and history into the true story.
The underlying focus on political investigations and a web of intrigue and conspiracy, combined with a heavy dose of Puerto Rican politics and cultural insights, lends to a creation which serves to both entertain and enlighten.
It takes a talented hand to wind nonfiction facts into a fictional mystery, grapple with a myriad of characters which prove compelling and recognizable in their own rights through the story line, and maintain a flow of action and drama that easily holds reader attention.
August Murder succeeds in all these aspects, and is a compelling saga of conflicting evidence and motivations for murder, crafting an especially astute eye to capturing Puerto Rican daily lives and experiences: "Mr. Miller, policemen in Puerto Rico don’t make a lot of money. The average salary for a police officer is around $30,000, about the same as the average salary for a teacher. For that kind of money, they risk their lives in dangerous places. They have to deal with young delinquents in the projects who may make $30,000 in one week, and who are much better armed than any policeman. It’s amazing that more of them are not taking money to look the other way or do worse."