I have never written a “fan letter” before so please forgive me as I attempt to accurately describe my thoughts and feelings regarding your work. In 2003, I found myself bored, hot, hungry and homesick, as I sat in the turret of my armored personnel carrier, situated in a hull defilade position as part of the Marine Corps’ Regimental Combat Team 5. We were located somewhere in Kuwait inside LAS (Living Support Area) 5 awaiting the order to cross the LOD and invade Iraq.
For many reasons, wartime boredom and anxiety is some of the worst there is. Some of the reasons are obvious and others aren’t so clear or easy to anticipate let alone cope with on a daily basis. It was due to lack of foresight on my part that I was trained and armed for everything combat had to offer except the absolute mind-numbing boredom that would ultimately dominate the days to come. This became apparent only a few hours into the flight bound for Kuwait that would end up spanning the better part of 24 hours. Hindsight being 20/20, I would have armed myself with more than bullets and grenades. Although, at the time I wasn’t a big reader, I certainly would have came equipped with a book or two. That was not to be the case however, I went into combat armed only to protect my physical self, not my mental self. I would soon learn the two are more dependent on each other than I knew.
Somewhere along the line I came into possession of one of your books. By the end of the second page I was writing a letter home asking my father to mail me every Vince Flynn book he could find. Unfortunately, I wouldn’t receive any mail for another four months, but to my surprise I found a Marine who had one of your books. After a short bargain, I ended up with the book and it had only cost me one package of baby wipes and my meatloaf MRE. Those two books took me and my imagination on the best adventure I have ever been on. I don’t know if it was because I, like Rapp, was fighting terrorists to protect America, or if it’s because I have always been interested in black-ops and night vision, but something made those books capture my imagination in a way I never experienced before.
Years had gone by after I completed my enlistment where I hadn’t picked up a book at all. Not until recently, when I became disabled and unable to work, did I pick up another book. With more down time than I know what to do with, I decided to read all your books, in order this time. In the past four days I have read three books, Term Limits, Transfer of Power, and The Third Option. Each book is better than the last and I get more and more attached to Rapp with every story. It’s the strangest thing to have feelings of loyalty and compassion towards fictional characters, but you have written in such a way that I can’t help but feel that I actually know them. I sometimes catch myself having thoughts that I believe to be my memories only to realize I am thinking about a particular part of one of your books, not something that actually occurred in my life. I’m no expert by any means, but tend to think that any author who can blend the lines between fiction and reality in a readers mind has something very special to offer. You sir have that in spades and I commend you for it and on the enormity of your success. I truly hope you continue the Mitch Rapp series for the foreseeable future and continue to expand on his ever impressive life.
Unfortunately, being unable to work right now has prevented me from being able to read Pursuit of Honor, but I am chomping at the bit to get my hands on it. Perhaps when it comes out in paperback I will be in a better position to get it, unless of course I can find someone willing to trade me for a meatloaf MRE. I also just read about the next book coming out October, 2010 which I am very excited for also. Thank you again for your amazing books and ability to transport me into the story, you are truly gifted!
Brett J. Fluri SGT, USMC
Vince sent SGT Fluri a signed copy of Pursuit of Honor.