Operation Southerly Breeze

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PrimeConsult, Jan 22, 2011 - Fiction - 302 pages
1 Review
Southerly Breeze affords a Darwinian tale of survival of the meanest, where assets become liabilities on the spur of the moment and none is spared. The drama unfolds in Bulgaria, a little known European country with about 6000 years of history, a crucible of cultures and a cauldron of conflicts, shortly before the end of the Cold War. The plot culminates to a closure in the first chapter where several protagonists are introduced and the reader gets an idea of the Byzantine ways of Party circles. Justice bursts in from unexpected corners. The novel brings the idiosyncratic perspective of the common man caught in the whirlpool of events he has no control over and no knowledge of. Additionally, to the Western reader, Cold War action was inevitably depicted along the overtly simplistic dichotomy of the fault lines of 'us' vs. 'them', 'good' vs. 'bad', 'free society' vs. 'the evil empire'. The loud voice of the everyman speaks in the book about a different struggle, hith-erto unknown, a lot more complicated, with degrees of evil, perpetrated by an inherently evil sys-tem. The story spins about three decades and takes place in three different regions of the country, each with own unique ambiance. One is the capital city Sofia. In this ancient, yet modern city government officials communicate with illiterate, colorful Gypsy women and major political de-cisions are adopted behind a wall of secrecy, shrouded by blatant, hollow propaganda clich s. In a 'parallel universe' and at about the same time, another plot develops in the second major city of Plovdiv and its immediate mountain vicinity, all with rich history playing a vital role for the un-folding events. While the ways and means of the local political 'tigress' closely follow in the steps of her highly placed Sofia political patron, she brings some unexpected twists in the fox chase game from her own book and proves to be a cunning and deadly enemy nonetheless. "Nothing personal, business only" is her implied Modus Operandi. The story branches to a small village in the area, a stone's throw away from the Greek border where a young man comes of age in the mythical mountain - the birthplace of Orpheus and Bacchus. In this bucolic village, em-braced by the majestic mountain, doors are never locked and last names not needed. History vio-lently galloped in eons ago, leaving a painful open wound, then let it to its devices. Later on the same village, becomes a scene of clashes and renewed mayhem. It is the arena of immense real drama, where honor, dignity and pride collide with brutal contemporary events, forcing serious decisions, repeating ancient history and bringing it to a complete circle. The same ruthless 'tigress' later seals the young man's fate as she eliminates some live hurdles towards her coveted full membership of the Politburo at the opportune moment in a brilliantly conceived and executed operation. It involves among other things, illicit smuggling, treachery and violence, while bringing unexpected justice to some nefarious characters. Naturally she has no qualms and no regrets flying from the scene of carnage to a 'bargaining rendezvous' of sorts with three of her recent 'bed companions' dead. Later on, after she investigates the life of her 'prematurely departed' old-time go-fer she uncovers completely unexpected facts from her own past, leaving her befuddled.The last subplot develops around the ancient resort city of Varna, on the Black Sea coast ruled by a promiscuous first secretary and his equally unscrupulous, profligate wife. Their despicable deeds are 'rewarded' in an unexpected way in the opening chapter of the book with some belated name play and ominous coincidences. Ancient myths and present day celebrations mingle into an explosive muddle of carnality, violence and death, leading to the ultimate demise of the First regional couple.
 

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Southerly Breeze affords a Darwinian tale of survival of the meanest, where assets become liabilities on the spur of the moment and none is spared. The drama unfolds in Bulgaria, a little known European country with about 6000 years of history, a crucible of cultures and a cauldron of conflicts, shortly before the end of the Cold War. The plot culminates to a closure in the first chapter where several protagonists are introduced and the reader gets an idea of the Byzantine ways of Party circles. Justice bursts in from unexpected corners. The novel brings the idiosyncratic perspective of the common man caught in the whirlpool of events he has no control over and no knowledge of. Additionally, to the Western reader, Cold War action was inevitably depicted along the overtly simplistic dichotomy of the fault lines of ‘us’ vs. ‘them’, ‘good’ vs. ‘bad’, ‘free society’ vs. ‘the evil empire’. The loud voice of the everyman speaks in the book about a different struggle, hith-erto unknown, a lot more complicated, with degrees of evil, perpetrated by an inherently evil sys-tem. The story spins about three decades and takes place in three different regions of the country, each with own unique ambiance. One is the capital city Sofia. In this ancient, yet modern city government officials communicate with illiterate, colorful Gypsy women and major political de-cisions are adopted behind a wall of secrecy, shrouded by blatant, hollow propaganda clichés. In a ‘parallel universe’ and at about the same time, another plot develops in the second major city of Plovdiv and its immediate mountain vicinity, all with rich history playing a vital role for the un-folding events. While the ways and means of the local political ‘tigress’ closely follow in the steps of her highly placed Sofia political patron, she brings some unexpected twists in the fox chase game from her own book and proves to be a cunning and deadly enemy nonetheless. “Nothing personal, business only” is her implied Modus Operandi. The story branches to a small village in the area, a stone’s throw away from the Greek border where a young man comes of age in the mythical mountain - the birthplace of Orpheus and Bacchus. In this bucolic village, em-braced by the majestic mountain, doors are never locked and last names not needed. History vio-lently galloped in eons ago, leaving a painful open wound, then let it to its devices. Later on the same village, becomes a scene of clashes and renewed mayhem. It is the arena of immense real drama, where honor, dignity and pride collide with brutal contemporary events, forcing serious decisions, repeating ancient history and bringing it to a complete circle.
The same ruthless ‘tigress’ later seals the young man’s fate as she eliminates some live hurdles towards her coveted full membership of the Politburo at the opportune moment in a brilliantly conceived and executed operation. It involves among other things, illicit smuggling, treachery and violence, while bringing unexpected justice to some nefarious characters. Naturally she has no qualms and no regrets flying from the scene of carnage to a ‘bargaining rendezvous’ of sorts with three of her recent ‘bed companions’ dead. Later on, after she investigates the life of her ‘prematurely departed’ old-time go-fer she uncovers completely unexpected facts from her own past, leaving her befuddled.
The last subplot develops around the ancient resort city of Varna, on the Black Sea coast ruled by a promiscuous first secretary and his equally unscrupulous, profligate wife. Their despicable deeds are ‘rewarded’ in an unexpected way in the opening chapter of the book with some belated name play and ominous coincidences. Ancient myths and present day celebrations mingle into an explosive muddle of carnality, violence and death, leading to the ultimate demise of the First regional couple.
 

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Contents

I
1
II
12
III
26
IV
37
V
45
VII
50
VIII
61
IX
73
XIX
159
XX
171
XXI
177
XXII
187
XXIII
200
XXIV
207
XXV
218
XXVI
228

X
78
XI
88
XII
95
XIII
109
XIV
117
XV
122
XVI
135
XVII
146
XVIII
154
XXVII
238
XXVIII
245
XXIX
252
XXXI
262
XXXII
272
XXXIII
281
XXXIV
291
XXXV
295
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