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||Infinity Publishing Company
||Jun 13, 2008
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HALO is a military acronym for High Altitude, Low Opening referring to freefall parachuting. It is an insertion method used for placing covert operatives into enemy territory.
This novel is about a young sergeant's experience as an Army Ranger, being drafted by the CIA and running “Black Operations” in Vietnam for nearly three years.
Jeffery Barkil is a young soldier who upon completing his training as an Airborne Ranger is recruited by the CIA. After which he spends six months training to run ‘Black Operations’ in Southeast Asia. The story takes place between the years 1958 and 1961, a period between the French surrender and expulsion from Vietnam and the US admitting they had troops in the country. Sergeant Barkil takes you on eleven harrowing missions including his time as a prisoner of the Viet Cong. You are taken from one mission to the next as Sergeant Barkil comes to terms with being a hired assassin while at the same time carrying out his Operations and fighting to stay alive.
Jeff was sitting on the floor with his knees pulled up under his chin, his arms folded across them and his head resting on his arms. He was going through all the usual thoughts and emotions as he sat waiting in anticipation of what was coming. As usual there was some fear, but this time the fear was completely unique.
Normally about this time in the routine he would be worried about screwing up in front of his peers by making a bad maneuver and looking like a fool. Only this time there was no one here to see if he screwed up or not. As a matter of fact there would be few if any maneuvers.
It had been a little less than a year since Sergeant Jeffery Barkil had successfully completed his Ranger training at Fort Benning. That’s when the suits had shown up and said they needed his help in defending God, Country and Mom against the communist aggressor. When he accepted their invitation, they shipped him to Ft. Sherman in Panama for three weeks of Jungle Warfare School where he earned the Jungle Warfare Expert Badge. When he returned from Panama he was sent for six months of their special training at Ft. Bragg.
This would be his first Special OP and they had him going in alone. They told him it should be “a walk in the park”. He would be using the Army’s new experimental insertion method, called the HALO jump which was the acronym for High Altitude, Low Opening. This simply meant he was going to fall out of the airplane at around twenty thousand feet and freefall a little over nineteen thousand feet before opening his parachute. It would be a jungle landing, in the dark, just before sunrise. He would then find and identify the target from the pictures he had memorized. After neutralizing the target, he would walk some thirty miles through the jungle back to the border to the rendezvous point. Piece of cake, what could possibly go wrong? He had thought sarcastically.
It was the fall of 1958 somewhere over Southeast Asia. The plane was an L20A, the army called them Beavers. The seats had been removed except for the ones used by the Pilot and Navigator.
Jeff was sitting on the floor behind the pilot, leaning against the outer wall of the plane, lost in thought. Damn, I hope this navigator knows what he’s doing. What happens if I freeze when he says, Go? Why didn’t I just say no when the “suits” showed up and stay with the division rifle team? That had been sweet duty.
“Okay, Barkil you signed on…you’re here…do it right…Airborne!” He said to himself.
A Real Page Turner
When I set out to read this book, I knew it was totally out of the genre I usually read in. I absolutely loved it. The talent this author has is awesome. I found it difficult to put this book down because I just wanted to know what would happen next in this action packed story of courage. D.J. Stephens has opened up a whole new world for me in the book he has written.
This book is a military action adventure set in the late fifties and early sixties. After being recruited to join the CIA, Jeffery Barkil goes from op to op with the intent to kill. He knows he may never get to come home with each mission he accepts. Jeff has to use everything he has ever been taught and more. He has to dig deep into his basic instincts in order to survive the jungles of Southeast Asia, out smarting the enemy who wouldn’t hesitate to kill him. Jeff knows his accomplishments will never be made public, because where he goes is top secret and no one knows what he does, except him and the top brass that sends him.
This is a must read for those who thrive on action and adventure. Jeff is one of our unsung hero’s…
Tory Lynn author of “My charming Protector”
This is every bit as good as Mr. Stephens first book “Bearkiller”
You step out into a night darker than the Devils hip pocket. Your breathing is assisted by the oxygen bottle attached to your chest as you plummet towards the earth. Everything you need to accomplish your mission is attached to your body because when you do land it will be in enemy territory, where even the smallest mistake could be your last. This is what the Army calls HALO, high altitude low opening, you call it all part of the job, because you are Jeff Barkil, one of the first Snipers to work in Southeast Asia.
In the tradition of W.E.B. Griffin we get a look at the covert operations that may have been happening in the late 50’s in Viet Nam through the eyes of Jeff Barkil an elite sniper working for the CIA during the time just before our involvement became public. Come free fall from 20,000 feet into the enemies’ back yard. Move through the jungle with the stealth of a natural predator as you stalk your targets. Learn the risks and benefits of working with a team.
This is every bit as good as Mr. Stephens first book “Bearkiller” if not better. A definite page turner.
Author- Edd Voss- Washington
Another D. J. Stephens success!
You will become hooked after the first few pages of HALO! This being his second novel, I know now that I can count on D. J. Stephens wonderful writing style. A no nonsense, spell-binding and gripping story. You are with him page after page as he writes. That is the way a novel should be written. I look forward to his next novel with great anticipation.
Store Owner-Jorja Ziller
Reviews for "HALO"
|Reviewed by Sherry Gibson
All I can say is HALO sounds like a thrilling read! If this book is anywhere near as captivating and thrilling as Bearkiller, I can't wait to get a copy.
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