Daily Archives: July 2, 2011

The Jefferson Key by Steve Berry

The Jefferson KeyReviewed by Allen Hott

From deep in American history to the present day in Washington, there is one constant. Strangely enough that constant is not a part of our government but is actually an arm of the government that was created by our Founding Fathers. The group called the Commonwealth was in fact given a Letter of Marque by George Washington. The letter that is granted in perpetuity to any and all heirs does in fact give the Commonwealth the license and authority “to subdue, seize, and take all property and wealth of any and all enemies of the United States of America.” At the time it was given it did in fact make the group pirates! For doing these acts the Commonwealth was to be paid twenty percent of the value of the seizures. And to this day the descendants of the four original captains are in fact still endowed with this privilege. That is the basis for the fictional The Jefferson Key!

Making the matter worse during his presidency Andrew Jackson had torn the pages authorizing the letter of Marque from the House and Senate journals. He hid them and used a code developed by Thomas Jefferson to describe where they were hidden. Jackson wanted the Commonwealth disbanded. Without the documents, the Commonwealth could not exist legally but the government also could not rebuke the authorization. Not surprising they did exist on the sly.

Rather than acts of piracy they gave assistance in establishing governments around the world who favor the United States but doing it secretly so the U.S. wasn’t involved. Or perhaps taking out someone unfriendly to the United States without having a war start or the U.S. blamed.

And now in today’s world few in Washington acknowledge the Commonwealth and recently two of their four leaders have been notified that they are targets of federal criminal investigations relating to among other things offshore money deposits upon which no taxes have been paid.

Kisscut by Karin Slaughter

KisscutReviewed by Julie Moderson

Karin Slaughter always writes amazing stories and Kisscut is no different. Her books always are fast reads that you won’t put down until the end. This is a definite all night book because you won’t be able to sleep because the story will have you on the edge of your seat. This is her second of four books about Sara Linton the town of Grant pediatrician and medical examiner who is divorced from the chief of police Jeffrey Tolliver. I have read the books out of order and Slaughter does a great job of keeping you up to speed so you don’t have to read them in order. I am going out tomorrow and buying the ones I haven’t read because I am so impressed by her writing that I want to read the rest of her books. So I guess this is a warning that the books are so good you will need them all.