Showing posts with label James Maguire. Show all posts
Showing posts with label James Maguire. Show all posts

Monday, August 14, 2017

Who Did You Have in Mind When You Wrote That Character For Your Book ?

As an author, it’s a question I get asked a lot regarding the characters in my books and I am always hesitant to answer, even though I think it is a really good question. 

The primary reason is that as readers we all create mental images in our head of the characters in books and sometimes they don’t translate well to real life. It’s something I wrestled with when the movie version of Frank Herbert's seminal work, DUNE, came out. None, and I mean NONE, of the characters fit the image that was in my head, as I read the books.

Now, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. I mean the casting of Jürgen Prochnow as Duke Leto Atreides was genius, and I could even get behind Francesa Annis as Lady Jessica,  but Kyle MacLachlen as Paul Atreides…………. Seriously?

Paul was 15 in the book!! Whoever came up with that casting decision should be shot! Twice!!

And don’t even get me started on Baron Harkonnen and Feyd-Rabban!! But, I digress.

There is even a school of thought among some authors that says don’t write a description of your characters, but rather let the reader fill in their own vision.  That would work fine until Hollywood get's over their love affair with remakes and make my books into a movie or TV series (Hint, Hint Hollywood). Then people would be freaking out that the characters looked nothing like they imagined. So I opted to describe the main players and in doing so I came up with some current actors who I thought fit the roles.

So if you are not interested in knowing who I had in mind, X this page out now………..

Seriously, leave now,………

Okay, that was your last chance.

For those of you who remained, here is my vision on who I believe best fits the description of the characters.

James Maguire:
The closest person to fit the bill of Maguire is Henry Cavill.  I’ve seen him in a bunch of roles, from The Count of Monte Cristo to Superman, and I think he could truly pull it off.   He also has that devilish smile which seems to resonate with just about any woman.

Cavill has the look and physicality of Maguire, which is important given Maguire’s military service as a Navy SEAL, and, while he is a bit younger, I think he can pull off the age group as well.

Melody Anderson:

What’s not to love about Tricia Helfer for this role? Honestly, she brings everything to the table. I first saw her in the role of Six on Battlestar Galactica. She has the acting chops and is stunningly beautiful.  It was also import to find someone who could play that strong, athletic woman, and at 5’10” she easily fits Melody’s height. 

The fact that she can also portray someone as tough as nails is important as well, given the fact that this might be important going forward in the role. Was that a hint? Plus she gets extra credit for liking cats.

Keith Banning:

Probably the EASIEST one for me to envision playing this role was Matthew McConaughey. There are just some roles written for a person and I have to admit that Keith Banning is his (so feel free to give me a call, Matt). 

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed McConaughey in a number of roles, but his portrayal as Detective Rust Cohle, in the original True Detective series, reinforced my choice. He has that rare acting ability to go back and forth fluidly within a character, something that is extremely important for the character of Banning.

Plus there is an inherent darkness in the role that I think makes him a natural.

Alex Taylor:

Probably the HARDEST one for me and yet, when it was all said and done, the most natural choice. Katee Sackhoff, another Battlestar Galactica alumni, was born for this role. Her portrayal as Lt. Kara Thrace was like a casting call audition for Alex Taylor, the highly troubled, yet incredibly talented professional.  To the rest of the world it seems as if Alex doesn’t wrestle with her demons, as much as she opens a bottle of whiskey and parties with them, but behind closed doors it is a battle-royale. It’s a role that I think Katee pulled off so well in BG. Alex might not be the most professional cop around, but she does know how to get the job done.  Plus, Katee does that chip-on-her-shoulder attitude better than anyone I know and she also has the cop experience from doing Longmire.

Ironically, both Sackhoff and Helfer are friends off screen, which I think would provide an interesting element, especially when it comes to a little competition.

Genevieve Gordon:

Writing Gen, I envisioned someone who was an anti-Melody, both in looks and attitude. Ashley Greene, of Twilight fame, was the perfect fit. There was something smart-ass about her that seemed right at home with the character of Gen. The auburn hair and smaller stature also provided the perfect contrast between the two women. 

She’s the perfect actress to play the other-half to the successful financial duo. I also think that she would be quite capable of delivering Gen’s barbs with the right level of humor and sarcasm.

So there you have it. The folks I think would do the best at bringing the characters in the books to life on the big screen or even a television show.

Feel free to let me know what you think of my choices or who you’d like to know the actor I envisioned for any other characters in the series.

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Thursday, August 10, 2017

Attention Hollywood: Enough with the Remakes

I like being entertained, it's probably one of the reasons I enjoy being an author. There is something very rewarding about being able to craft new worlds in your books for a reader to immerse themselves in.

For the time it takes to watch a movie, catch a television show or read a book, you are able to suspend belief and transport yourself far away from the trials and tribulations of the real world. That being said, you really do need to have a new world to go, but for some odd reason, Hollywood has apparently run out of new ideas. 

Now, I will be the first to admit that I loved Ronald Moore's re-imagined Battlestar Galactica series. Having grown up watching the original TV show I was not at all upset when they brought it back with a more mature theme. They kept true to the original premise, but managed to add a darkness and complexity that I don't think would have worked nearly as well back in the 70's. 

But, it seems that this is one of the true exceptions these days.

Hollywood seems hell bent and determined to remake everything and I just don't understand why. There is an abundance of new material out there to draw ideas from. Take my books as a prime example. Yes, I know it's a shameless plug, but that doesn't make it untrue.

One book reviewer opined that James Maguire was the new Jack Reacher. I'll confess that I think Maguire is a helluva lot more bad-ass, but I'm biased. And, as good as Maguire is, he also has a very complimentary cast of fellow characters, including a number of strong female ones, that provide something for everyone.

My motivation in writing riveting story-lines stems from the fact that I grew up as a voracious reader. I whiled away the hours journeying to far away places, traveling side by side with some amazing heroes and heroines. It didn't matter if it was Paul Artreides (Dune), Jack Ryan (Patriot Games) or Han Solo (Star Wars). The one thing these characters had was the ability to suspend my belief, but in a very plausible way. It is one of the things I strive for in my books. 

I write characters that the reader gets invested in, whether they are the protagonist or the antagonist. The biggest reward for me is when a reader says: "You know, I hated so-and-so, but I read that chapter and couldn't help but feel bad for them." There is no greater reward, and no greater curse, then when you finish a book and the next thing you are getting are emails from your readers asking when they next book is coming out. 

Today, Hollywood has simply gotten lazy. Rather than take the time to invest in new stories, they seem determined to prove that they can capture lightening once again. Often with dismal results. 

Case in Point: CHiPs (The Movie)

To put it mildly this was a debacle. First, it was a slap in the face to the original series. Say what you will, but CHiPs was a positive television show that cast law enforcement in a good light. The movie, not so much. The $25 million dollar production managed to bring in an amazing  $25.5 million dollar box office haul. That's right, for their effort they eeked out half a million in profit and garnered a dismal 16% rating on Rotten Tomatoes

Sadly, this level of movie buffoonery seems to be all the rage these days.

Whether they are remaking Carrie, Planet of the Apes, Starsky & Hutch, The Magnificent Seven, Rollerball, The Bad News Bears, Arthur, Baywatch, The Goodbye Girl, Total Recall, Conan, Ghostbusters (shudder), or even the 27th incarnation of SPIDERMAN, the bottom line is more often than not they fall flat on their face.  I mean really, what's next in the queue? Dirty Harriett?

To a certain extent I can understand the appeal. You have a vehicle that had a following and you figure you can re-capture that for a new generation. Unfortunately, very few take the approach of Ron Moore and up their cinematic game. I think it is also one of the reasons why Netflix and Amazon Studios are enjoying such success.

There comes a point when you have hit rock-bottom and begin to re-evaluate things. Unfortunately, Hollywood seems intent to keep digging or, at the very least, beating the proverbial dead horse.

So if you folks in Tinseltown have reached the end of your rope, and want to secure a lucrative book franchise, have your people contact my people and we'll do lunch. 

Monday, May 29, 2017

Perfect Pawn - Free (Memorial Day Week)

Just in time to kick off your Summer Reading, I am re-releasing an updated version of my debut novel, Perfect Pawn.

From May 30th through June 3rd, 2017, you can add the e-Book version to your summer 2017 reading list for free.

Perfect Pawn tells the story of James Maguire a former Navy SEAL and a retired NYPD Detective who is faced with investigating the disappearance of an ex-girlfriend who went missing from a one-car accident.

The one thing you find as an author is that with each passing year and each new novel, you become a better writer. With this in mind, we went back and did a re-edit / update. While the story line is not affected, there are some additional 'conversations' between characters that enhance the book, as well as removing some of the inter-chapter 'head' hopping that took place. All in all I think this new edition will greatly appeal to the reader.

For this edition I also updated the cover artwork to make it readily identifiable.

If hope that you enjoy the book and I would be grateful if you would be so kind as to leave feedback when you are done.

You can check out all my books by clicking here: Other Books by Andrew G. Nelson

Thank you so much and happy reading !!

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Uncommon Valor II - Challenge Coins of the NYPD Emergency Service Unit

Back in the summer of 2015, just as I was getting ready to publish: Uncommon Valor - Insignia of the NYPD Emergency Service Unit, the collecting world erupted with a new area: Challenge Coins. At the time I questioned whether I should be the book on hold and include this field, but the more I researched, the more I realized that I would need a lot more time.

I had already invested five years into the cloth insignia history, so I decided to publish that book and then devote the necessary time to properly investigating the coin phenomena. To give you an idea of just how quickly coin fever has gripped the hobby, consider that my first book documented nearly a century of ESU insignia history and comprised roughly 130 pages. This follow-up is nearly the same page count, but only goes back to the late 1990's, when the first ESU coin came out.

Like the first book, this has been a labor of love. At times it felt like I was investigating some deep, dark mystery and at other times banging my head against the desk seemed like a completely acceptable option. In the end it didn't take five years, but it did take almost two.

As much as I love writing these books on ESU, I realize that I much rather write fiction. It is much simpler to create stories in your head, as opposed to conducting research. In the field of non-fiction you only get one chance at being right.

Fortunately, the hard work has paid off and now I add another new book to the catalog. If you are interested in the NYPD ESU or challenge coins, I believe you will thoroughly enjoy this book. It contains over 100 photographs and offers collectors a glimpse at some of the rarest challenge coins produced by the various Trucks and Specialty Units, many of which have never been seen before.

I want to extend my sincere thanks to those members of ESU who afforded me the opportunity to ask innumerable questions and who provided photos of their coins. You are truly the Finest of the Finest.

It is amazing to me, as I submit the file for printing, that this will be my ninth book. It seems like only yesterday that I was holding Perfect Pawn in my hands for the first time. Now it is time to put my non-fiction endeavors to bed for awhile, as I take back up the further adventures of James and Alex.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Knight Fall (James Maguire Series - Book 4)

Now that the hoopla of the 2016 Presidential Election is finally over, I am pleased to announce that my latest novel: Knight Fall, has been released as an e-book on the Kindle platform.

This is the 4th book in the James Maguire series and the 6th book in chronological order. To see the book progression, please click here.

Thank you for your continued support. I hope that you enjoy this and all my other books.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The Importance of Reading my Novels in Order

The other day I was having a chat with one of my readers and it occurred to me that she had not read my books in order.  

Does that mean that you have to read them in order? No, but you should, if you want to get the most out of them.

When I started out, I had a vision for the direction that I was going to take the books.  Unfortunately, and you can blame my wife for this, that vision took a sort of detour when I wrote SmallTown Secrets. That book was only intended to be a short story, sort of like what I did with Cold Case, but my wife fell in love with the main character and it took on a life of its own.

So instead of having just the James Maguire series, we now have the Alex Taylor series. Each series is their own, but their stories also converge into the world of the other. 

The reason I suggest that you read them in order is that, while each book has its own storyline, they also contain sub-stories and characters who, while they might not be significant now, will play a larger role down the line.

That’s the fun of story-telling, you’re telling a story.  Even though it is fictional life, we know that life doesn’t end at the last chapter, it just moves on to the next book.

So pick up Perfect Pawn and start where it all began. You'll get the most of them that way and isn't that what reading is all about? 

I hope that you enjoy the journey! If you do, please don't keep it to yourself. Kindly tell a friend and leave a review. I cannot begin to tell you how much it means to authors when they get feedback from their readers. After all, we write for you.

If you’d like to stay up to date on the newest releases, then please like my Facebook page and feel free to follow me on Twitter.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

My Christmas Gift To You !! - Perfect Pawn

To celebrate Christmas this year, I have decided to play the part of Santa Claus and giveaway a free e-book copy of my debut novel, Perfect Pawn.

To get your copy, simply go to my Amazon author page on Christmas Day and choose the graphic for Perfect Pawn. The book will be free all day December 25th.

Thank you to my amazing fans for your continued support over the years. May you have a very blessed Christmas and may 2016 be a healthy and prosperous one for you all.

God Bless,
Andrew G. Nelson

Sunday, December 20, 2015

NYPD Cold Case - The Katherine White Murder

Okay, for those of you who like novellas, then have I got a surprise for you. I just penned my first one, NYPD Cold Case - The Katherine White Murder, Detective Angelo 'Ang' Antonucci.

As much as I love writing the James Maguire / Alex Taylor novels, they are all part of one massive story running around in my head. Sometimes I just like being able to do a quick story and slamming a definitive 'the end' at the bottom. A book like this allows me to do just that.

While Maguire does make the occasional appearance, as part of his NYPD role, he is only a minor character in this series.

I hope you will enjoy it and I look forward to your feedback. 

If you’d like to stay up to date on the newest releases, then please like my Facebook page and feel free to follow me on Twitter.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

December 2015 Update

I hope that you have all enjoyed the Thanksgiving holiday and that your plans for Christmas or, in the case of my Jewish friends, Hanukkah, are going well.

Things have been fairly busy on this end with the release of the e-book version of the Alex Taylor sequel: Little Boy Lost coming out, as well as work on the print version, which will hopefully be released in time for Christmas. It was really fun to work with my amazing wife, Nancy, on this project and I hope to do so again in the future.

In addition to the work on getting that novel out, I have also been working on the next James Maguire novel, which will come out in 2016, as well as another Christmas present project. Once again, you have Nancy to thank for this one.

As we approach the holidays, I would like to ask all of you a favor. If you have read any of my books, please go to Amazon and leave a review. It doesn't have to be much, but every review helps boost the books position within the Amazon analytics. This is used to feature the books to other potential readers. So for all you hoping that they one day get made into a movie, this is your chance to further that chance.

Stay tuned for upcoming posts.

If you’d like to stay up to date on the newest releases, then please like my Facebook page and feel free to follow me on Twitter.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Pre-Order: Little Boy Lost (An Alex Taylor Novel) on Amazon.

You can now pre-order the latest Alex Taylor novel: Little Boy Lost at Amazon beginning today. The book will download to your kindle on November 25th, just in time for the Thanksgiving weekend.

Little Boy Lost is the follow-up to Small Town Secrets. It is the 2nd book in the Alex Taylor series. If you are interested in which order to read them, check out my Books page for the listing.

Little Boy Lost marks the first time my wife, Nancy, and I have worked on the actual story line together. If it were not for her I do not think the story would have evolved in the way it did. She brought an element that dovetailed nicely with the characters.

In honor of that wonderful collaboration, you will see her name listed as my co-author on this book. I look forward to working with her again on upcoming novels.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Cover Reveal - Little Boy Lost (An Alex Taylor Novel)

I know that a lot of you have been asking when my next book would be coming out and I am happy to announce that your wait is nearly over.

This is the sequel to Small Town Secrets, which was the first book in the Alex Taylor series. If you are going chronologically, it is book number five in the overall series.

As most of you already know, while the story-line is a stand-alone, characters and events will cross over into the James Maguire series as well.

This novel, which takes place after the events in Bishop's Gate, involve Alex's investigation into the disappearance of a young boy during the Penobscot Founder's Day celebration.

We just finished the final editing on the book and it will be released on November 25th, just in time for Thanksgiving. There will be a pre-order available for this book, which should be in place sometime tomorrow.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Want to see Perfect Pawn made into a movie ?

There is a website called the IF List, which stands for the ImagineFilm list. The IF List is a platform for movie and casting ideas. Whether you are a fan, author, aspiring actor, or industry professional, The IF List lets you discover potential films and TV shows, make proposals, and gain popular support for the ideas you want to become reality.

The NYC based company was founded by life-long friends and business partners with a shared passion for movie ideas. Inspired by the concept of a universal database for casting, the founders spent over a year rigorously planning and developing the product that would become the Imagine Film List. The core team is made up of dedicated artists and thinkers who bring together experience from multiple disciplines, including product design, web development, filmmaking, storytelling, marketing, and brand strategy. The company is committed to building a valuable creative platform and resource for the arts and entertainment industry. In this role, they are backed up by a number of partners including Backstage and Studio 4.

My book, Perfect Pawn, is listed on the site and I am asking for your help. By visiting this link: Support Perfect Pawn, you are able to do three things:

  1. Support Perfect Pawn’s efforts to become a movie development.
  2. Select actors who you feel would best be suited for the main roles.
  3. Write an endorsement for the project.

We have all read books that were so good, we wanted them to be turned into a movie. Here is your chance to do just that.

I would really appreciate it if you would take just one moment to support my book.

Andrew G. Nelson

Follow me on Twitter: @Andrew_G_Nelson

Sunday, August 16, 2015

Author Interview at Awesome Gang

I had a wonderful opportunity to be interviewed by the nice folks over at Awesome Gang, where readers meet awesome writers. 

It's a fantastic site, where readers can get some insight into new books and the authors behind them. 

If you have a moment, please check it out at:

Remember to follow me on Twitter: @Andrew_G_Nelson

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Bishop's Gate - Now Available

I am pleased to announce that the 3rd installment in the James Maguire series, Bishop's Gate, is now available on the Kindle e-Book platform.

As you read this book I would like to remind you that the draft of this book was written a year ago. So as you consider the timeliness of the topics discussed, remember that many of these subjects had yet to happen.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Who is James Maguire ?

"Who is James Maguire?"

It is a question that I get asked on a fairly regular basis by readers of my books. Sometimes I answer with a wink and a nod, just to keep some semblance of the mystery alive. The truth is, Maguire is much more complex. He is one of those composite characters, drawn from a  multitude of  different people.

When my wife first challenged me to write the story, creating the character was quite easy. I just had to do some simple descriptive work. When the challenge went from 'short story' to an actual novel, that's when the reality hit and the hard work began.

It was Mark Twain who famously said: "Write what you know."

So I took that advice and first began to craft the character based on what I knew. If you think about it, it makes sense. I like a wide variety of fiction authors, but some are just that, authors. They bring no real world experiences to their books, just what they have been told or researched.

You can kill a great story, just by using the wrong terminology. However, you can create an even better story by immersing your reader inside a world that they will never experience, by having them live it through your eyes. Spending twenty years with the NYPD afforded me the opportunity to share with my readers some of what I lived through.

So I first structured the character based on myself and my career, and, once I had that foundation, then I started to add characteristics of people I knew or had worked with. I'd been very fortunate to have had the pleasure of knowing an extremely eclectic group of people during the course of my law enforcement career, from highly decorated military veterans to tough as nails cops.  I drew on some of their tales to craft certain aspects of the character. Even some of the verbal exchanges between Maguire and some of the secondary characters are based directly on my relationship with others. It's a comedic, sometimes dark, gallows humor, type of conversation that you find between people who have shared similar experiences.

I tried to make James Maguire someone who I felt most readers would be drawn to. He is a combination of hero and every-day man. Someone who has spent time in the valley's of life, as well as the mountain tops.

So who is James Maguire ? He's the kid from rural, upstate New York who wanted to excel in the arts and become a professional photographer. Then, in a cruel twist, his life was irrevocably changed in a moment. A romantic dreamer who saw one life crushed and another began. A young man who ended up at a fork in life's road, and who traded in the love of art for the art of war. A decorated military veteran who transitions from one uniform for another, becoming a member of the NYPD.

Perfect Pawn is a 'phoenix rising from the ashes' story, where love and redemption are found, in one of those curve-ball moments that life seems to throw at us, when we least expect it.

Monday, January 12, 2015

The Face of Evil: Taking up the fight against Terrorism

In my book, Queen’s Gambit, one of the central themes is the threat that we face from terrorism. It is a topic that I dealt extensively with during my time with the NYPD. 

Back in the 90’s I was part of a unit that provided dignitary protection and conducted threat assessments, both for individual security as well as commercial and residential sites. It was a difficult task, one that was made ever harder when we encountered resistance from the people we were trying to protect.

A case in point was in 1997, after the Centennial Olympic Park bombing in Atlanta, Georgia. I was sent to a major sporting venue and asked to evaluate their security and make recommendations. I spent several days going through their facility assessing the risks and taking notes. On the last day, I sat down with the senior members of the organization, and made my recommendations.

I instructed them on tightening perimeter security, establishing designated areas where spectators and packages could be searched, etc. It was nothing that I would consider overly egregious. It took about five minutes before I realized that I was just wasting my breath. I vividly recall one of the execs commentating that they couldn’t search attendees because their event didn’t draw that type of person.

I closed up my folder and wished them luck.

Not long after that, an individual was apprehended inside the venue by officers assigned to the event. This person had a large carving knife in their possession, something which would have been picked up long before the individual had entered the facility. A tragedy was avoided only by sheer luck.

It is the way I feel about the times that we are living.

As we have seen in the recent terror attacks in Paris, France, coupled with those in Ottawa, Canada, and Sydney, Australia, terrorism is alive and well. The real problem is not that terrorism exists, but our unwillingness to properly address it.

To be certain, the outcome in Paris was a failure, not a success. The minute the terrorists began their killing spree inside Charlie Hebdo we lost. In essence, we became reactive to the situation, attempting to put an end to it, when in reality; we should have been proactive and kept it from happening in the first place.

My aim here is not to play Monday morning quarterback, but to instruct.

Think of terrorism as a tool, like a hammer. It is used to bring about a particular response; it is the reason why you hear it referred to by different names: political terrorism, narco-terrorism, biological terrorism, and even eco-terrorism. The real threat however is the person wielding that tool. In order to properly address the threat, you need to know the mindset of the person.

The immediate threat that we face today is one driven by a religious zealotry to the nth degree. That is a statement of fact which simply cannot be ignored. If you want to be politically correct, and bury your head in the sand, then you better pray that you are just as lucky as those sporting executives were and pray that law enforcement, or the intelligence communities, catch them before they do whatever it is they are planning.

Those who subscribe to the religious tenants of radical Islam have no desire to sit down and discuss their animus toward you. They believe in only two things: conversion or death.

Amazingly, there is a certain segment of society which believes that ‘we cannot be like them’. As if by simply doing nothing, we will somehow convince them to lay down their swords to join us in some utopian global citizen fairytale.

It sounds quite naïve to decry the use of non-lethal interrogation techniques, such as waterboarding and sleep deprivation, when your enemy is only interested in killing you. If you don’t understand this fundamental difference, you are part of the problem.

For starters, when it comes to the basics of Islam, most are woefully uneducated. The majority of folks couldn’t tell you what the difference was between Sunni or Shia, or the many other denominations of Islam. Not that I can blame them, as many struggle with defining their own religious beliefs let alone a complex religion like Islam. The issue I have is that, if you are uneducated, you shouldn’t be interjecting yourself into the conversation.

George Bush, and enhanced interrogation techniques, did not create the problem of Jihad, it has been around for over a thousand years. We are not in a traditional war, but a religious one. Our enemy cannot be appeased with money or land; they seek only to spread their brand of religion, opposition to which means death.

The French are going to have to come to terms with a monster that they helped create. In an attempt to be politically correct, they allowed their core principles to be modified. The first time they surrendered, they set in motion a practice that has brought them to the brink.

There are now an estimated 750 Zones Urbaines Sensibles, or No-Go Zones, across the nation of France. These are areas where the government has simply raised the white flag, allowing the local community to take over. As a result, these areas are not governed by the laws of France, but by Islamic Sharia law. In many instances the police or other public safety, such as fire and ambulance services, will not even go in to these areas.

This is not isolated to France; this is also seen in growing areas of the United Kingdom and Sweden. Even in the United States, there are burgeoning Muslim communities in places like Dearborn, Michigan, where locals are calling for the equivalent of No-Go Zones and the institution of Sharia courts.

What the French failed to realize is that terrorism is not a criminal problem. Islamic terrorists, like the Kouachi brothers and Amedy Coulibaly, are at war. Treating them as if they are a common criminal, who can be rehabilitate and returned back to society, is ludicrous. In fact, lax prison rules have allowed them to become a prime recruiting location.

Amedy Coulibaly converted to radical Islam while in prison in 2005. It was during that prison stint when he met Cherif Kouachi.  The two men became devoted followers of Djamel Beghal, a French-Algerian man with ties to al-Qaeda, who was convicted of plotting in 2001 to blow up the U.S. Embassy in Paris. Coulibaly tried to break another militant Islamist, Smain Ait Ali Belkacem, out of prison in 2013. Although he was convicted and sentenced to five years in prison, he served only several months before he was released early.

This is the mindset that believes that a terrorist is a criminal and a prison sentence administers the proper amount of justice. It is a mindset that we are seeing here in the United States as well. Western civilization seems loath to accept the fact that this is a war we are fighting; choosing to believe it is a criminal justice issue.

Imprisoning people like this serves only to keep them isolated for a finite amount of time until they are once again released to the battlefield, a fact we have seen replayed when Gitmo prisoners have been released. In their minds, they are prisoners of war and their duty does not end till they die or the war is won.

Whether you like it or not, this is the reality we now face.

Yesterday, over forty world leaders participated in a march in Paris denouncing terrorism. It was the largest assemblage since the Americans liberated that city during WWII. Unfortunately, absent from the scene were representatives of this administration. Yes, the American Ambassador was there, somewhere, but when you have the representative heads of France, Israel, England, Germany, and so many other nations, the least the administration could have done was send the vice-president.

However, this administration does not want to address the real threat posed by radical Islam. It wants to paint a narrative that terrorism is on the decline, not the upswing that we are witnessing with our own eyes.  They want to view it as a simple criminal justice problem and mete out sentences in civilian court. What could go wrong with that?

After all, we saw how well it worked out for France.

The photo at the top of this article is the enemy that we now face. It speaks to the contempt with which they view us. The glint of orange fabric at the bottom was just the latest victim, but, to be sure, they envision each and every one of us in that position. 

It's our choice to decide whether we try to reason with the devil or fight back.