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Florida Straights by Pierre Renaldo

Florida Straights

by Pierre Renaldo

240 pages
Deadly action on the high seas against ruthless remenants of WWII

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Category: Fiction:Adventure
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About the Book


Rex Bell, helicopter pilot, decorated Korean War hero, unwittingly stumbles into intrigue, conspiracy and a trail of mass killings that began in WWII. It all begins when he fulfills a dream, to sail the Florida Keys and Caribbean Sea.

After he recovers from near mortal wounds, suffered in his last battlefield encounter, he returns home to find his ?faithful wife? has been living with another man during his absence. Her apartment is empty, his beloved has gone off with a new partner, and Rex is devastated.

After recovering from his heartbreak, he heads to South Florida to buy a sailboat, which he plans to live on and sail. He has accumulated a fair amount of cash at his favorite pastime, poker playing, and while looking at the ?fixer upper? boat of his dreams, he finds a dead woman, wrapped in a pile of rotting sails, on the bow of the vessel. Thus begins a journey during which Rex Bell is to become the unsuspecting target of a deadly menace.

A German war criminal, who had escaped detection throughout the war and for many years thereafter, has almost unlimited wealth and resources. Baron Helmut von Tempski, German/Argentine playboy, socialite, art dealer, has come to the Florida Keys to enjoy his great wealth, social position and to establish himself as a respected citizen.

Rex is marked for elimination, just for being in the wrong place at the right time. The reason: Baron Helmut von Tempski. The Baron sets his sights on Rex?s beautiful business partner and one time lover. He is determined to win her over and he will eliminate any obstacles, real or imagined.

Von Tempski is attracted to a small, clandestine gaming establishment in Key West. He is instantly attracted to Sally Coleman, a Black Jack dealer and half owner of the enterprise. Von Tempski begins a relentless pursuit of this beautiful woman, determined to have her as his mistress and constant companion, a showpiece and conquest for this connoisseur/collector of art treasures and beautiful women. He is engaged in other activities, as well as dealing in art and jewelry stolen from condemned, former owners.

The gaming venture is destroyed by a suspicious fire, which ends the business partnership between Rex Bell and Sally Coleman. The fire is determined to be arson and there are also suspicions that a homicide has been committed within the establishment when fragments of human teeth and a melted gold ring are found in the ruins of the gambling club.

Von Tempski is finally successful at luring the damsel to accompany him to Havana aboard his aboard his luxurious yacht. He receives some very bad news while he is entertaining his lovely guest at a nightclub in Havana, and a hurried departure from Cuba ensues. Good news comes after bad. Sally indicates that she will be his willing paramour after rejecting many previous advances by the Baron. She promises the wonderful reward he has hoped for, the beginning of a wonderful liaison.

This story is about an inadvertent adventurer looking for some semblance of meaning to his life. As a victim of a heartless deception, he is disillusioned about life in general and marriage in particular. His misery leads him to excessive drinking and onto the road of self-destruction, not knowing what, if anything, he is looking for, until a caring older woman directs him toward a different life.

New friendships, a fling with a beautiful woman and an exciting business venture in a truly off beat place, lead him into a world of great dissimulation, with forces of evil determined to eliminate him, the reasons for which he is unaware. Fate is kind and without his knowledge, he is protected by people from a shadow existence, seeking vengeance and justice. The end result leaves him in a true quandary, seemingly without a future, yearning for a love that seemed to have slipped away.

Many people crave adventure and excitement in their lives and yet never get close to ?doing?. Gambling, adventure on the high seas, living in exotic places and being involved in off beat activities, either intentionally or accidentally. Their escape is often times a book. When you cannot accomplish such things yourself, the next best thing is to read about people who have.

The Florida Keys have had a certain mystique` that incited millions to go there to see it for themselves. Havana, Cuba, before Castro, was even more often a lure to those looking for the offbeat, illicit, or just being in a foreign country that had a reputation for ?off-the-wall? things to do: sleazy entertainment, open gambling, wild women and other things on the seamy side of life. Many went just to say they ?did it?.

This book is about excitement, high-risk adventures, a clandestine world that existed within and very close our own safe shores, and how people who seem respectable can often be something totally different.

This book is also about an existence unknown to most; it is about the world of adventure, excitement, and an underworld of deadly risk.It is also meant to entertain.



About the Author

Pierre Renaldo is a retired general contractor who has lived on the Island of Roatan, in the Western Caribbean Sea. He is editor of Roatan Insights, a monthly e-zine for people comtemplating retirement in a third world paradise.

He is also editor of Coastwatcher, The Vioce of the Western Caribbean, a weekly column about daily life in paradise. Both publications have been featured on RoataNet for many years, with readers numbering over 120,000.



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