Rising Phoenix

Rising Phoenix

4.2 20
by Kyle Mills

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Special Agent Mark Beamon is a maverick. His open disdain for the FBI's rules—and Directors—has exiled him to a no-profile post in the boondocks.

But when a shadowy right-wing group starts flooding America's emergency rooms with dead and dying, Beamon is summoned back to Washington. Teamed with an icily efficient female field agent, he is given


Special Agent Mark Beamon is a maverick. His open disdain for the FBI's rules—and Directors—has exiled him to a no-profile post in the boondocks.

But when a shadowy right-wing group starts flooding America's emergency rooms with dead and dying, Beamon is summoned back to Washington. Teamed with an icily efficient female field agent, he is given the thankless task of stopping the slaughter—even though millions of Americans secretly approve of it!

As the body count rises, Beamon realizes there is something eerily familiar about his adversary, reminding him of the coldest killer he ever encountered—not a criminal but a law enforcement colleague. And for the first time, he wonders why he was chosen for this assignment.

Was it his expertise—or his expendability?

"An explosive thriller that launches a new genius for taut, compulsive adventure writing...."
- Tom Clancy

"In the world of political thrillers, I have the feeling that young Kyle Mills will soon be a very big player."
- Frederick Forsythe

"A phenomenal concept....Fascinating....Good conspiracy theory, absolutely!"
- Rush Limbaugh

"Absorbing..A fine thriller with memorable characters and enough twists to keep readers turning pages....Mills is definitely someone to watch."
- Publishers Weekly

"Writing in the Tom Clancy tradition, Kyle Mills has produced a power-packed drama about the men and women who battle the bad guys to protect us all."
- William H. Webster, former director of the FBI and CIA

"[An] exceptionally accomplished debut thriller.A chillingly effective and suspenseful tale, complete with the moral ambiguities and guilty pleasures of such vigilante dreams as Death Wish."
- Kirkus Reviews

"Rising Phoenix is gripping, authentic, and as frightening as a gunshot in the night."
- W.E.B. Griffin

"A seductive action novel....Here's one slick page turner that makes readers think."
- San Francisco Chronicle

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
In Mills's exceptionally accomplished debut thriller, a well- organized and generously financed vigilante group essays a final solution to America's festering drug problems.

When the popular Baltimore-based televangelist Simon Blake learns that his teenage son has been experimenting with marijuana, he commissions John Hobart, the church's security chief, to activate a draconian scheme casually mentioned in the course of a discussion about the federal government's inability to stem the inbound flow of narcotics. With $2 million at his disposal, Hobart (who was drummed out of the DEA for brutality) recruits a small band of like-minded associates and executes a cunning plan to poison the country's cocaine/heroin supplies at their offshore sources. Alerted to the extralegal campaign, the FBI puts maverick agent Mark Beamon on the case. Before Beamon can get started, however, addicts and recreational users alike are dying by the thousands from dope adulterated with the residue of a rare mushroom known as orellanin. Although more than half the country approves of what the conspirators are doing, and narcotics use plummets, Beamon mounts a furious effort to bring the unknown conspirators to book. Concerned by the group's impact on their cash flow, Colombian druglords and America's Mafia chieftains join the chase. The law and the outlaws catch up with Hobart simultaneously, and he doesn't go gently into that good night. By the time he's killed in a three- way shootout along the Baltimore waterfront, copycat organizations are doctoring the drug stocks delivered to ghettos and high-rent districts throughout the US.

A chillingly effective and suspenseful tale, complete with the moral ambiguities and guilty pleasures of such vigilante dreams as Death Wish.

Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
4.18(w) x 6.75(h) x 1.05(d)

Read an Excerpt

Washington, D.C.,
October 15, Present Day

Things were looking good for Wile E. Coyote. His rocket-propelled roller skates gushed fire as he streaked across the dramatic desert landscape. It didn't matter, though. In the end he'd lose, left in the dust by that smart-ass Road Runner.
Leroy Marcus understood the coyote. He understood wanting and not having. And, though he had only just turned fifteen, he understood disappointment.
He punched the volume button on the remote, effectively drowning out the loud coughing coming from his mother. It looked like the coyote was about to take another spectacular fall to the earth, and he loved the low whistle that always seemed to accompany The Plunge.
"Leroy, get your mama some sugar."
He ignored her and stabbed at the volume button a couple more times.
"Leroy. Did you hear me? I need me some sugar!" The quiet desperation in her voice cut through the screech of ACME rocket skates.
He thought back to the days when his mother used to come home from work and ask for sugar. He and his older brother would run to her and bury their faces in her skirt and she would laugh and pat their heads affectionately.
But his brother had been dead for almost a year, and his mother no longer rushed out the door every morning, fussing that she was late. Now when she asked for some sugar she wanted more than a kiss. She wanted her fix.
He turned his head slowly and peered around the overstuffed chair that engulfed him. His mother sat in the kitchen, legs splayed out unnaturally under the table. She stared back at him with watery eyes.
The volume of the television increased again, thistime on its own. The cartoons were over, replaced by a small leprechaun extolling the virtues of Lucky Charms. He turned away from his mother and pulled his knees to his chest.
"What you waitin' on, boy?"
Reluctantly he lowered his feet to the floor and maneuvered through the worn and broken toys that his five-year-old sister had scattered across the room. He paused for a moment to look down at his mother. She turned away and reached for a pack of cigarettes.
His sister appeared in the doorway of their mother's bedroom and ran to him. He knelt down and ran a hand through her hair.
"What you been up to, Diedre? Your braid's already falling out. Took me a half an hour this morning to make you all pretty."
She giggled and chewed on her knuckle.
"I gotta go out for a little while, okay? You gonna be good for Mama?"
She nodded. Her smile had a way of making him forget who he was. He took care of her—and that made him as important as any rich white man. Maybe even more important.
"Okay. I'll be back in an hour. If you're good, I fix that braid. If not, you have to walk around all lopsided for the rest of the day."
She turned and ran back to their mother's bedroom. He watched her until she disappeared, and then he punched the redial button on his cellular phone.
The wind that had been flowing through the streets like a
river for the past two days had finally blown itself out, leaving Washington blanketed in a cold mist. Leroy surveyed the dark sky from the doorway of the housing project that had been his home since he was born. His 'hood was particularly depressing in the rain. It was true that the sun accentuated peeling paint and cracked sidewalks, but it also spurred activity. Children ran across asphalt-covered playgrounds. Teenagers smoked and drank on street corners. Even the foul smell that the sun wrung from the neighborhood was something. Rain made it all look like a faded black-and-white photograph.
He shoved his hands into baggy jeans and began splashing slowly down the stairs. At the bottom he turned right and started up the street, covering his head with the hood of his sweatshirt. Through the mist, he could just make out another lone figure framed by a severely leaning doorway. As he approached, the figure came to life and started toward him. "Tek! Whassup?"
Leroy had earned the moniker a little over a year ago from his prolific, though less than skillful, use of a Tec-9 machine pistol. It was his weapon of choice, and an item that he was never without.
"Ain't nothin' goin', 'Twan. You ready?" The wet air seemed to suck up sound.
"Shit, yeah. Nothin' much doin' on a day like this."
They continued up the street, not talking. It took less than ten minutes to arrive at the small white house that was their destination. They paused on the sidewalk, scanning for danger signals.
The house's roof looked ready to cave in. The thick boards covering the windows seemed to be the only structurally sound materials that had been used on it. There was no yard to speak of, just wet garbage clinging to overgrown weeds. To the uninitiated, the house would have appeared abandoned. They knew better.
'Twan held back by the street as Tek walked casually to the front door, resisting the urge to look around him. He rapped three times with his knuckles, paused, then hit the door twice with the soft flesh on the side of his fist.
"Yeah, who is it," came a muffled voice on the other side of the door.
"Yo, man, it's Tek. Open up, it's fucking pouring out here!"
The door opened about two inches, stopped, then opened the rest of the way.
"Who's that?"
Tek examined the man pointing at his friend on the sidewalk. He looked like a mountain.
"He's with me," Tek explained simply, trying unsuccessfully to step around the man and out of the rain.
"You come in. He stays out."

Meet the Author

Kyle Mills is the author of Sphere of Influence, Burn Factor, Free Fall, Storming Heaven, and Rising Phoenix.

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Rising Phoenix 4.2 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 20 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I found this book great reading, the plot was beleiveable and well presented. Suspence till the last page, very good.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I bought this book on a lark many years ago, but it has proved to be one of my favorite 'FBI novels.' Kyle Mills delivers a plan to destroy the drug trade that is so plausible that I had trouble separating the book from reality. There were times I expected to turn on the TV to CNN or the like and see a story about people dying from poisoned narcotics. Mills manages to cover every angle to give this book realism, even exploring how crime syndicates within the U.S. would turn such a costly situation to their advantage. The writing is very well done, especially for a first time author. I think this book is a great example for budding authors who are trying to improve the way they use point-of-view. Most of all, this book is just fun.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The premise is downright spooky (a bunch of paramilitary types randomly poison the US illicit drug supply). Mills keeps you dreading the onset of the plotters' killing, and deftly handles the inevitable political firestorm that would result from such actions. The characters themselves are unexceptional, with the exception of the plot's mastermind. One of the book's primary instances of suspense is handled in a delicious manner--the scene headings (with date) are used to let the reader know that certain decisive events have already taken place, but their outcome and implications aren't revealed until later! Not a book for those with weak stomachs for following the actions of cold-blooded mass murderers, but a fascinating window into the extremist psyche for the rest of us.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Rising Phoenix is a great investigative adventure novel that places itself amongst Fredrick Forsyth thrillers. It is indeed compulsive reading that offers a good debate to a losing and hypocritical war on drugs that costs the government billions of dollars a year, and eight far-right men who attempt to do what the government can't while trying to avoid the FBI and drug cartels. The reader is kept guessing as to how the book unfolds. The sequel Storming Heaven I found even more exciting to read, but noticed a slight change in the lead charachter Mark Beamon's persona. Advise to future critics who review this book: Don't give it three stars if you've only read one chapter! This book deserves all the credit that Tom Clancy gives it.
BookMouse More than 1 year ago
I read this book in one sitting! I was spellbound as to what would happen next. It was very well written and I look forward to reading more books from him. I'm sure that being friends with Clancy had a lot of influence in his writings. Wonderful book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Rising Phoenix is a story that does a fascinating job in focusing on the success and failure of America's war on drugs. It is a human story that makes reader's think about what can be justified in our society and cannot be. It makes people wonder what we must sacrifice for a better world and if it is worth sacrificing. In Rising Phoenix, Reverend Simon Blake is convinced that drugs are the cause for America's lack of morals and ethics, and that drugs are responsible for the death and violence that surround the headlines day in and day out. Determined to do something about it, Blake searches for a way to rid America of drugs once and for all. Enter John Hobart, Blakes security chief and ex-DEA agent who claims he has the solution to the problem. To poison the narcotics supply and give addicts the choice to quit or die. With that a mysterious and cunning right wing group is born lead by Hobart who is a manipulative, trained, cold blooded killer that knows law enforcement procedures front and back. When the FBI gets word of the sinister plan, they assign Mark Beamon, the best special agent in the bureau the task of stopping the slaughter before it starts, not realizing that it is already too late. When the poisonings begin, the country begins debating the issue of right and wrong, millions approving of the poisonings millions opposing the lethal actions. The chain of events that follow will thrust Beamom into a world he knows all too well, a world of political maneuvering, deception, scandal, violence and death that will put his career and life on the line. Beamon will have to face the issues in his personal life while at the same time taking on the most unrelenting and ruthless opponent he has ever faced. It is five star action and top notch writing by one of the best authors of mystery and supense that leads to an adrenaline pumped climax and powerful finale.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Kyle Mills is definitely moving up to the ranks of Tom Clancy. Rising Pheonix, along with Storming Heaven, are probably some of the best books I have read, period.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought this novel was put together quite well. Kyle mills actually had me rationalizing with his characters reasoning behind this mythical horrific act, and cataclysmic events surrounding it. It was a real thrill ride from beginning to end. I think Kyle Mills is a writer to look for in the future, and I am looking forward to reading free fall.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A bit disjointed at times
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Rising Phoenix was my first Kyle Mills book I have subsequently started reading Burn Factor (another good read). In Rising Phoenix, you have a person(s) trying to address our drug problem / policy. Their idea; no demand = no supply. This puts a new twist on "Just Say NO".