The USO recently deployed five of today’s most critically acclaimed thriller writers on a week-long USO/Armed Forces Entertainment tour to the Middle East. The tour, known as Operation Thriller, kicked off with a special visit to Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, DC, and National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, MD. During their visit, the authors visited with wounded warriors and extended their heartfelt gratitude. Among the authors traveling on tour are:
· Steve Berry (The Emperor’s Tomb, The Paris Vendetta, The Charlemagne Pursuit and The Venetian Betrayal, among others)
· David Morrell (First Blood, in which Rambo was created, and The Brotherhood of the Rose)
· Doug Preston (The Monster of Florence and Relic, which later became a number one box office hit)
· James Rollins (Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, and the Sigma Force series including The Doomsday Key)
· Andy Harp (A Northern Thunder)
Whether writing about Special Forces soldiers (Rollins), Special Agents (Preston) or German troops (Berry), becoming honorary lifetime members of the Association of Intelligence Officers (Morrell) or serving in the U.S. Marine Corp (Harp), each author is an avid supporter of America’s armed forces and a member of the International Thriller Writers (ITW) — the nation’s first and only professional organization devoted solely to thriller authors.
Operation Thriller is scheduled to visit two countries and tour five military posts in just eight days. In addition to visiting military hospitals in and around the nation’s capital, the tour has visited Camp Arifjan in Kuwait and touched the lives of countless troops. During their time on the front lines, the authors will share insider writer techniques, pose for photos and shake hands with troops. The group will also distribute advance copies of their upcoming novels and lead Q&A sessions. This is the first USO tour for each participant and the first time the USO has ever sent a group of authors to the combat zone.