Fusing fiction with his own extensive career in Law Enforcement and education, John R. Beyer’s ‘Soft Target’ blurs the lines between a gripping novel and early-warning alarm of imminent threat. Mirroring the terrible events in Beslan ten years ago, the narrative depicts a team of terrorists descending on an unassuming California school for a deadly large-scale attack nobody was expecting. The sad truth is that this novel could easily become a reality, and Beyer hopes to wake the nation up to the credible threats facing schools from coast to coast.
Phelan, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 07/01/2014 -- Beslan, 2004; 334 hostages (including 186 children) were killed following a three-day stand-off by armed Islamic separatist militants as the school came back together after its summer recess. While the world stared in horror at pictures that looked like they could have only been created in Hollywood, millions of Americans counted their blessings that life “just wasn’t like that” on home soil. However, one former SWAT officer and Public School Administrator knows that a similar attack could be America’s next big news story – and his new novel depicts it vividly.
‘Soft Target’ does away with literary hype and license to instead showcase the true danger facing public schools; the backbone institutions of America that face a grave threat of becoming playgrounds for terrorists. By bringing events similar to Beslan and having them play out in California, Beyer wants readers to consider the nation’s preparedness and realize that a large-scale attack on a school is imminent.
Russia had learned the hard way the extremes these fanatics would go to… Ten years ago, Captain Yuri Shakirov stood in horror as young children were butchered by a hail of bullets from a group of Islamic extremists.
As blood spattered the walls of this small Beslan school, Yuri's greatest fear was that this tragedy would someday be repeated. Now America would encounter these same crazed murderers… All the terrorists needed was a place where they could descend, like the cowards they were, and strike terror into the heart of every American. An average middle school in California seemed the perfect soft target. The terrorists saw it and pounced. And Yuri was once again thrust into the line of fire.
It would take strong determination and courage to stop what had happened in Russia from happening here. The Americans need his help, but can Yuri find the strength to go through this nightmare again?
“9/11 made every American acutely aware that they are not safe, and the repeated actions of lone crazed gunmen prove that schools are a constant soft target,” explains Beyer. “However my research and experience points toward the fact that large-scale organized terrorism could soon turn schools into arenas of bloodshed and that the first instance of this could be right around the corner.”
Continuing, “But don’t just take my word; media commentator and founder of Killology, Col. Dave Grossman, provided background expertise for this project. He constantly reminds the American public that such a school attack will happen - the date is not determined but all intelligence (FBI, CIA, INTERPOL) predicts that such a group as written in my novel will strike within the next few years. Ignorance won’t work; we NEED to prepare.”
Beyer makes it clear that he didn’t write his novel to trivialize or try to spin this threat into commercial entertainment; but to instead present the facts in a way that will resonate with the population.
“People don’t trust the media anymore and they rarely listen to the authorities. Literature is a great vehicle for allowing people to dive deep into topics they may not be acquainted with, and experience the emotion and internal discussion that can spur them into change. That’s the point behind this project; to raise awareness before it’s too late,” he concludes.
‘Soft Target’, published by Black Opal Books, is available now: http://amzn.to/1qrioB1.
For more information, visit the author’s official website: http://johnrobertbeyer.weebly.com.
About John R. Beyer
John R. Beyer spent nearly a decade in a Southern California law enforcement agency as a traffic officer, a training officer, and as a member of the elite Specials Weapons Assault Team (SWAT) before moving into the educational field. In that capacity, he served as a teacher for both regular and special education before moving into school and district levels of administration for a total of over twenty-five years in education. He is currently the co-founder and head writer for the J and L Research and Exploration blog with his lovely spouse Laureen, co-founder. He has been published in dozens of magazines and finished his Doctorate in Educational Management from Pepperdine University in 2001 and completed his PhD. in Clinical Psychology in January of 2014. He resides on a small ranch in the High Desert of Southern California.
He has also been involved in acting within the Western genre. You can look him up on IMDB and find many videos on YouTube.