This is a story set in modern Africa. It is the story of the struggle between two men. There is an old saying: "War creates more scoundrels than it kills". A familiar old saw but probably true. The story begins in the small, defiant, war-torn southern African country then known as Rhodesia during their bloody bush war against communist-tinged nationalist forces. But the story isn't about esoteric geo-politics during the cold war, it is about the hard men galvanized by the corrosive effects of war, tribalism, ambition, gut-level malevolence and revenge. In Africa, scoundrels abound in all colors. Like all wars, the war attracted all types of men: adventurers, war profiteers, professional soldiers, opportunists, and of course the true believers, both black and white. The Rhodesian War had them all in spades. One is an American leading African troops in the bush war. Another is a Chinese-trained guerrilla commander he clashes with during the final months of the war. That small, bloody battle in the bush will have profound effects on both men for many years. The war sets the stage, but the bloody climax comes many years later. Both men have chosen their paths, neither thought they would ever meet again. But now it is 20 years later and the American is plying his trade for a ruthless, shadowy, Arab arms dealer who also has a lucrative gem smuggling operation in the always dangerous Congo. But there is a problem in the Congo so the Arab sends his best "expeditor" to solve the problem. The American solves the problem but soon finds himself enmeshed in another more serious problem -- the illicit trade in nuclear materials. He reluctantly joins the search for the nuclear contraband - preferring not to go to prison for gem smuggling - and ends up in the one place he never wanted to return to -- Zimbabwe, formerly known as Rhodesia. Re-connecting with old friends, both African and European, the American is able to find the nuclear contraband hidden in the bush, but is captured. He soon learns that his old nemesis, now a senior general in the Zimbabwe Army, is the one who has the nuclear contraband and plans to sell it to the highest terrorist bidder. He also learns that the general has exacted a terrible revenge on him stemming from acrimony festering since the old bush war. But the general plans to sell only part of his nuclear stash. He has other plans for the remainder and the man he has had tortured and imprisoned in a filthy hut in the bush fits into those plans quite nicely.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite What happens in a country that has been ravaged by war? What happens when two archenemies meet each other face-à-face after twenty-years? Can the scars of war be scraped clean and memories healed? The Jackals Feed by B.J. Coltrayne answers these questions with a social commentary in the guise of a thrilling, somewhat epic tale of a conflict that goes beyond the long-time enmity between two ruthless men armed to the teeth against each other - the guerrilla commander with Chinese training and the US commando who heads a group of Rhodesian fighters - creating an unhealthy atmosphere where greed, corruption, lies and intrigue, and untold forms of evil thrive. This book is a tale that will remind readers of the classic post-war conflict in post-colonial Africa and is a succinct testimony to the lethal quagmire of lies, intrigue, and murder. The Jackals Feed by B.J. Coltrayne is an interesting read for those who like large scale conflict. The key players in the novel are well-rounded characters that readers will be forced to hate or like. The author has that unusual gift of engaging readers with vivid, crisp descriptions and engaging dialogue. Reading this story reminded me of Andre Brink’s A Dry White Season, only this time Coltrayne isn’t talking about apartheid. He successfully paints a realistic landscape that readers will live with for a very long time. This novel is one of the most successful criticisms of post-war Africa and how it can be very easy for strangers to pillage the wealth of a people once it has gone through the crude reality of war. A very interesting read!