Saturday, March 23, 2024

Fate's Revenge, a Jack Fuller Mystery

In the opening pages of Fate’s Revenge, you will learn about a professor and his dog, an unexpected letter, a peacock brooch, a devastating miscalculation revealed in magazine photography, a brutal female war criminal living a lie for 40 years, a memorable opera singer named Evelyn, and a top-notch Air Force Investigator named Jack Fuller.

Jack Fuller, a character created by author D. James Then, is a retired Air Force investigator-turned-novelist who transforms his real-life cases into page-turning fiction.

Fate’s Revenge explains a complex case investigated by Jack Fuller in the mid-1980s. The novel is the final installment in the author’s Fate Trilogy.

In Fate's Revenge, Fuller tracks down a brutal female Nazi war criminal named Erika Becker who committed many murders during the war. Becker was once a lead guard at the Langenstein-Zwieberge Concentration Camp in the heart of Germany. Using a pseudonym, Becker has lived a carefree and prosperous life on American soil for 40 years.

David Gale, a famous historian and former WW II Army intelligence officer, helped liberate the Langenstein-Zwieberge camp in 1945.

Forty years after the liberation of the concentration camp, an unexpected letter from a man named Aaron Levi arrives at Gale’s residence. Levi, a survivor of that camp and the Holocaust, served as Gale's personal interpreter at Langenstein-Zwieberge in 1945, before the war in Europe ended.

In his letter, Aaron Levi reveals that his wife Rachel owned a one-of-a-kind peacock brooch, which she hid on her person throughout her incarceration—a brooch she carried into the Langenstein-Zwieberge camp.

A pre-war photograph of Rachel wearing the brooch accompanies Levi's surprising letter. Levi describes how a heavy-set female guard at Langenstein-Zwieberge stomped his wife to death and stole her peacock brooch.

Forty years later, through an act of fate, Levi recognizes Erika Becker—thinner and older—wearing Rachel's one-of-kind peacock brooch. He saw Becker’s face and the brooch in a photo display in a popular American magazine.

Immediately, he knew the woman was Erika Becker; however, he did not know Becker’s pseudonym or her place of residence. Levi included the magazine clipping with his letter to Gale. Levi’s conclusion: the brooch could only be Rachel’s; the woman in the magazine photo could only be Ericka Becker.

Levi contacts Gale because of their past relationship. Levi believes the historian has the power and influence needed to enact justice against a Nazi war criminal like Becker.

Sadly, the 82-year-old Gale has a bad heart and realizes he no longer has the strength to bring down the former Nazi. However, he knows a White House mover and shaker who can, his good friend Mick Stephens.

Unfortunately, Gale dies of an aneurysm while leaving Stephens a jumbled voice message. However, the message has enough allure and intrigue to make Stephens seek the help of Jack Fuller, the best investigator he knows.

Thus begins Fate’s Revenge, an engaging mystery with memorable characters, filled with twists and turns and a variety of enticing personal and historical perspectives, including a secret Nazi program commissioned by Rudolf Hess, Adolf Hitler's second-in-command.

Key to the story is Evelyn Gale. Evelyn, David Gale’s daughter, is a former opera star, and a dynamic and forceful woman, as are all women in novels by the author. Gale works with Fuller to solve the case and an intimate relationship ensues.

Fate's Revenge is equal parts intrigue, romance, and discovery. The novel filled with memorable characters, offers settings and dialogue that are realistically informative. The novel has a compelling and a surprisingly creative and informative ending.