“Fast and fierce” – Kirkus Reviews
For readers of John Grisham and William Deverell comes a political thriller ripped from today’s headlines. Lawyer and environmental activist David R. Boyd writes a riveting thriller about the psychological toll of a humanitarian crisis. Filled with tension and courtroom drama, Thirst for Justice will have you questioning what you believe about right versus wrong.
Michael MacDougall is a talented trauma surgeon whose life in Seattle is slowly unraveling. Frustrated as an ER doctor and with his marriage in trouble, he volunteers with a medical aid charity in the Congo. Disconsolate at the lives he cannot save in the desperate conditions of the region, he is shattered by a roadside confrontation with the mercenary Mai Mai that results in unthinkable losses.
Back home in Seattle, he is haunted by his experiences in Africa and what he sees as society’s failure to provide humanitarian aid to those who most desperately need it. Locked in a downward spiral, he becomes obsessed with making his government listen to him and dreams up an act of terrorism to shock his nation awake.
Activist and lawyer David Boyd’s debut novel is a taut political thriller that begs the question: how far is too far when you’re seeking justice?
In the war-torn Democratic Republic of the Congo, Seattle surgeon Michael MacDougall, the hero of environmental lawyer Boyd's taut, thought-provoking debut, gladly donates his medical services, but he's unprepared for the flood of sick and dying. After outlaws assault members of his team, he returns to Seattle a haunted man. Convinced that America needs to do more for the Congo's poor and destitute, MacDougall attempts to persuade people in power to take action, like increasing their access to clean water. When his efforts prove fruitless, he commits an act of bioterrorism with the hope of bringing the nation's attention to his cause. The result finds him arrested and on trial facing the death penalty. Boyd does a fine job of presenting the mental state that leads MacDougall to his misguided action, and raises the question of whether a person can ever be justified for an act of terrorism. Part thriller, part political commentary, and part courtroom drama, this novel will stick with the reader long after the final page.