On Edge; by Albert Ashforth

MWSA Review
Deathly struggles with the Taliban, U.S. officials, and conniving women in Afghanistan

"On Edge" is a riveting military/thriller set in a turbulent Afghanistan. 

After a cursory investigation, Alex Klear refused to accept the Army Criminal Investigation findings that Colonel Pete Hanson was killed by an Afghan soldier at a secure military post in Kabul. On the verge of retiring as a government investigator, Klear reluctantly accepted an assignment to return to the war-torn country to be a second set of eyes into the murder of his long time army friend who was probing a massive fraud at the Kabul Bank where nearly a billion U.S. dollars went missing.

In 2013, U.S. forces were being reduced when Klear arrived in Kabul, the country's capital and a dangerous place. He found his mission impeded by American military officers who wanted a quick resolution to the murder, the sudden disappearance of the the suspected killer's body, a mysterious female Captain who seemed to have a lot of autonomy and control over Klear's actions, the victim's widow — also an army colonel and Klear's old girlfriend — and in Germany, a fiancé  mad as a nest of hornets because Klear accepted the assignment instead of helping her with wedding plans. To complicate things further, both the widow and female captain try to seduce Klear as assassins track him from Kabul to Dubai and back while he seeks both motive and identity of Colonel Hanson's murderer.

The surprising twists and turns in a thriller set in an untamed area of Afghanistan keep a reader on edge wondering what happens next in a yarn that pits Klear against the Taliban, uncooperative government officials, and conspirators in the world's biggest bank fraud. This fast-paced novel compelled me to stay up way past my bedtime turning the next page, and the following page, and the following page to see what happens next. No disappointments right up to its unexpected end.
Review by Joe Epley, MWSA Reviewer

Author's Synopsis:
When a former Army buddy is murdered by an Afghan military colleague, U.S. Army Special Investigator Alex Klear is called back into action in Afghanistan to investigate what is thought to be a classic “green-on-blue” killing. Alex finds Kabul in a state of chaos, partly under government control, partly controlled by the Taliban. 
     From the beginning, he suspects that the Army has identified the wrong man as the killer, and that an innocent Afghan soldier has become the victim of a complex frame-up. His suspicions are solidified when he discovers that his friend had been investigating a massive fraud at Kabul Bank. As Alex is drawn into the epicenter of the biggest bank fraud in history, he finds his efforts systematically thwarted by both the American and the Afghanistan governments.     In the lawless streets of Kabul and into the far outreaches of Afghanistan, Alex relentlessly hunts his friend’s killer—and uncovers the truth. In real-life, a shameful incident kept mostly out of the media—a monumental embarrassment to both countries.

ISBN/ASIN: 978-1-60809-200-0
Book Format(s): Hard cover
Genre(s): Mystery/Thriller
Review Genre: Fiction—Mystery/Thriller
Number of Pages: 400