Can you break what is already broken?
Broken World is a fast-paced modern thriller charged with suspense, action and political/sexual scandal. It confronts head-on real and controversial issues such as Roe v. Wade and the U.S. bi-partisan political system while exploring what it is like to cope with personal substance abuse and failed dreams.
The book opens with the brutal rape of Karen Torrance, the wife of self-made millionaire and senatorial candidate, Richard Torrance. Grizzled and jaded Detective Jennifer Kim, months away from retirement and full pension, is assigned the case along with her young protégé.
Kim believes she has “seen it all” until now. The two come to discover that Karen Torrance has been engaged in an extramarital affair with a former campaign aide, Mario Stiles, who was fired from her husband’s campaign staff. Stiles becomes the key suspect after he suddenly disappears but Kim believes he’s innocent.
Meanwhile, a media circus erupts. The rape of Karen Torrance becomes national news as a media circus descends upon the sleepy Midwestern town of Kent City. A press conference is called. It is widely believed that Richard Torrance, a staunch conservative and pro-life evangelist, will concede his flailing bid for the 4th Congressional seat until at the press conference in front of millions watching on TV his wife announces her affair and that she will not allow him to quit his campaign.
Detective Kim continues to pursue her belief in a “phantom semen sample” against the wishes of the City Prosecutor while battling her own cynicism and demons, including a failed relationship with her ailing mother, a sexually-molested sister that committed suicide and a raging addiction to alcohol.
Richard Torrance’s once-fledging campaign experiences a second life as public support and sympathy mount for him and his wife, thrusting him into the lead over his incumbent, ultra-liberal Democrat rival. Karen Torrance, struggling with the terrible after-effects of her rape, faces more shame and embarrassment when she realizes she is pregnant. She has no doubt who the father is but knows that she cannot consider abortion as an option without jeopardizing her husband’s political reputation.
The story climaxes with the election of Richard Torrance as state senator, the death of Mario Stiles while fleeing from the FBI and Kim’s discovery of the real rapist. When Kim further learns that the real rapist was hired by someone on Torrance’s campaign staff, she confronts the newly-elected senator the night of his acceptance speech to the world. What Richard Torrance does on stage is the surprise-ending that readers will never forget.
Each chapter of Broken World is highlighted with sobering statistics and insightful quotes on rape, abortion, addiction, politics and life as we know it (or think we know it)—entertaining and informing the reader at the same time.
It is a book that will make readers think and decide for themselves: “Can you break what is already broken?”
- J. M. Foster, September 2011
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