THE CHOICES is a story about determined individuals faced with decisions that will set the course of their future. They fight prejudice, violence, and natural hazards in attempts to fulfill their hopes and dreams. Love, hate, revenge and a quest for a fortune in ancient diamonds provide the action and emotion for this thriller, with elements of science fiction, suspense, romance, crime story, adventure, and political commentary. The action spans three continents and six nations, offering colorful backdrops for the race to an unprecedented fortune in diamonds.
Alan L. Moss recently spent some time with The Big Thrill discussing his latest thriller, THE CHOICES:
What do you hope readers will take away from this book?
My initial objective was to write a unique treasure hunt thriller. The idea was to take an intelligent individual whose future seemed routine and create circumstances that opened him to totally new objectives and the danger and rewards of a treasure hunt. This was aided by including our sad reality of domestic terrorism and the hate that has advanced its impact. I hope that readers will have an enhanced view of our problem with white supremacy while enjoying the thrill of the treasure hunt.
What attracts you to this book’s genre?
The book’s presentation and analysis of the nation’s growing problems with hate and terror should make a valuable contribution to the thriller genre by linking it to a serious national crisis. At the same time, the gay relationship of the graduate student whose research enables the diamond expedition helps to normalize gay individuals. Thus, the genre allows the description of a wide range of human interests.
What was the biggest challenge this book presented? What about the biggest opportunity?
The biggest challenge was learning enough about the science of geology to create the conditions that would lead to finding and mining a unique fortune in diamonds. This was aided by a new theory of diamond formation advanced by scientists at Johns Hopkins and NASA’s recently released quality measurement research of the crater created by the asteroid that killed the dinosaurs sixty-six million years ago. I was able to put it all together and develop a reasonable potential for locating and extracting incredibly valuable stones.
Was there anything new you discovered, or that surprised you, as you wrote this book?
I was surprised that recent developments in geology supported the thinking behind locating and mining the treasure in diamonds.
Without spoilers, are there any genre conventions you wanted to upend or challenge with this book?
As with each of my thrillers, the protagonist is educated and driven to reach outside his routine environment to oppose forces that are far superior.
No spoilers, but what can you tell us about your book that we won’t find in the jacket copy or the PR material?
One of the more interesting subplots concerns two independent women who have lost their loved ones to the financier of the diamond research. They join forces and risk their lives to get revenge.
What authors or books have influenced your career as a writer, and why?
David McCullough and Dan Brown are the two authors that set the standard to which I aspire. Whether it’s McCullough’s sweep and vitality or Brown’s nail-biting suspense, they create text that I hope to emulate.
Is there a question that you feel is important to you and/or your novel? Write it in below, but be sure to answer it too!
Q: How was an economist able to create a complex scheme in geology?
A: Months of research and good luck with new developments that fit the objective.
Alan L Moss, Ph. D. is a unique and emerging voice in commercial fiction. His published novels spin sophisticated tales of conspiracy, politics, adventure, love, sex, revenge, and subterfuge. His protagonists are educated people driven to reach outside their routine environments to oppose forces that are far superior.
Plots involve complex schemes to amass power and wealth, often concerning rare substances, innovations, scientific breakthroughs, and exotic locations not well known by the general public. Stem cell cures (2009), rare earth minerals (2012), and drones (2014) are featured well before they came to the attention of the general public. Unconventional settings include such locations as New Zealand’s Canterbury Plains, Andorra La Vella, Kakabeka Falls, Ontario, and the Yucatan jungles of Mexico.
Alan’s new work, THE CHOICES, presents a unique treasure-based story in the context of the nation’s descent into the rise of white supremacy, divisive speech, hate crimes, and gun violence. It follows four published novels: The Samoa Seduction (W & B Publishers 2015); Surviving the Endgame (Whiskey Creek Press 2014); Insidious Deception (Whiskey Creek Press 2012); and Island of Betrayal (Gauthier Publications 2010). His nonfiction offerings include Selling-Out America’s Democracy (Praeger 2008) and Employment Opportunity (Prentice-Hall 2000).
Before devoting his efforts to writing books, Alan was chief economist of the US Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division, Congressional Fellow to the late US Senator Frank R. Lautenberg, and Adjunct Instructor in Economics at District of Columbia area universities. Alan continues to utilize his background in economics as an expert witness on various labor issues, especially those concerning prevailing wages. He has written a number of published op eds, diagnosing some of the nation’s most serious problems and suggesting means to improve our national life.
To learn more about the author and his work, please visit his website.