The Officers' Club by Ralph Peters

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Ralph Peters certainly understands military culture. From the unwritten rules that dictate etiquette between ranks and the constant shift of personal roles while on and off duty between friends and lovers, this engaging novel reads like a marathon of "As the World Turns" in khaki and dress greens.

2nd Lieutenant Roy Banks is stationed at Fort Huachuca in Arizona, across the border from Mexico, during the early 1980's, where he is training to become an Intelligence Officer. Though Roy does a whole lot of things that show a distinct LACK of intelligence, including regularly sleeping with another married lieutenant, he is quickly portrayed as a strong but flawed man who loves jazz, beer and his own moral code.

When 1st Lt. Jessica Lamoureux, a promiscuous and manipulative woman, is found murdered, Lt. Banks becomes the prime suspect after recently declining her advances. As Lt. Banks works on clearing himself, he discovers a long laundry list of fellow servicemen with ties to Lt. Lamoureux. Could a jilted lover have committed the dastardly deed?

When the bedsheets are washed and hung out to dry, only one man comes out clean, though maybe a little shrunken from the emotional churning and cleansing.
This was a dirty, fun novel that's as gritty as the desert it's set in.



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This page contains a single entry by Dan K. published on April 15, 2011 8:51 AM.

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