William Barnwell

Death of the Camel's Child


It was almost midnight in the Queen City. The wet road reflected yellow street lamps and tall thick trees spreading outward over the sidewalks. Carrying a metal briefcase, holding up a red umbrella, and wearing a black raincoat, T.E. Lawrence, né Shaw, walked along Flora Drive in an upscale neighborhood of Charlotte toward Sam Zeki’s house and considered how best he could do this. The bracing smell of the rain kept his head clear. He reasoned that if he got everything he needed the first time from Zeki he would just go ahead and kill him.

Shaw was the same size as the first T.E. Lawrence, five-feet, five-inches tall, and he in fact believed he was Lawrence, Lawrence of Arabia, the legendary desert adventurer of WW I, although he was an even more determined man and one who lived in a heated desert of his own devising. He also believed that he was so steeped in desert lore that he, like the first Lawrence, was as durable as any camel to be able to do in his desert what he planned to do.

He knew that Zeki had the 1911 Ottoman Empire oil surveys of the Arabian Peninsula, lost after 1918, and he almost certainly had knowledge about where the 1917 letters from T. E. Lawrence to his American friend were.

Shaw was going to get them back.

He knew they belonged to him.

He also knew Zeki would be along any minute now.

Murder, revenge, and big money are all involved. A conspiracy involving economic terrorism is about to begin, and a key artificial-intelligence engineer grows concerned as people in his company start to die. Can he stop a radical conservationist group from using his own supercomputers to detonate dirty bombs? If he can't, the consumer can kiss all the oil in the Arabian Peninsula goodbye. The climax is a savage fight between the engineer and the mastermind, a deadly reincarnation of the famous desert adventurer of WW I, Lawrence of Arabia himself. Both men are cocooned in deserts of their own devising, but only one man will find his way out.

A contemporary thriller. See insert of part of Chapter 1.
When a group of over-the-hill entrepreneurs are working on at least one scheme a month, one of them has to work, right?
Barnwell has recently finished his ninth novel, a contemporary economic thriller, Practicing Resurrection, about a man who feels he was personally responsible for starting the Great Depression, and a family that has held the secret of an even bigger economic conspiracy dating back to 1913, but leading to bizarre murders in our time.
This novel is a prequel to the Blessing Papers series when an ancestor discovers a living metal that can destroy the world. The Blessing family vows to stop it.
With the loss of the ability to read, the world disintegrates. In the afterlife, in an Ireland of the future, a young man searches for reasons for the Fall and how to put it back together.
With all his doubts, how will Turly Vail/Blessing safely unlock the precious secret of the Blessing Papers?
Turly Blessing makes his way through arid valleys and the Lower Mountains, and his courage becomes the final test for the future of all things in the rise and fall of the sigma curve.
Young Adult Novel
In school, students, drugs, gangs and new challenges clash at an inner-city school under great pressure to do well. A strange narrator and a compelling outsider act together to either meet the challenge, or lose everything. I, Lord Several, an alt/punk rework of an earlier short story is being issued as a magazine serial as in the days of Charles Dickens. See first page of website with overview. See insert of Chapter 1.
Writing as a craft
Try this site for some of the ins and outs of writing fiction or nonfiction.

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