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Night Sweats: How Moral Philosophy Failed by Michael Bernhart Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

In the final chapter of the Sally and Max Brown series, the protagonists face personal and professional hurdles as health scares and the dark horrors of the human organ trade come to light in author Michael Bernhart’s “Night Sweats: How Moral Philosophy Failed”. 


The Synopsis

Advancing age brings its discomforts and challenges: failing health, concern over diminished appeal, loss of optimism – sometimes even hope. For Max and Sally Brown, it also brings an encounter with some of the most ruthless and unprincipled men on earth: recruiters and doctors who harvest and sell human organs.This, the final episode in the Max Brown series, provides a thrilling, and often disturbing, look inside the “red trade” in human body parts. The action is set against the backdrop of honor crimes against women, and takes place in Jordan and Switzerland.

The Review

A thrilling conclusion to the Sally and Max Brown series, the author presents a truly personal journey for both protagonists. The inspired use of journal entries for both characters to illustrate the ongoing nature of the narrative makes for an engaging way to bring the reader into the story. 

The weight of previous adventures with the characters within this series are shown and take their toll on the protagonists, as the most heinous and harrowing journey is set upon when a series of women who are victims of “honor” attacks begin to die, and soon Sally and Max are investigating the possibility of organ harvesting on the black market. When those they thought they could trust become suspect, the characters are pushed to their limits to find a way to bring justice to the Middle Eastern women who are consistently victimized and yet never spoken up for. The inclusion of a personal health scare for one of the characters and the tragedy of the past haunting the other makes the overall narrative much more engaging for the reader overall. 

The Verdict

A must-read final chapter in the action-thriller series, Night Sweats is a one of a kind tale of crimes against humanity, and the few people willing to step up to fight against it. By the book’s final pages readers will be left in shock as the final events begin winding down. This lengthy yet captivating read is filled with action, suspense and fantastic character development that readers will absolutely love. Be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10


About the Author

Michael Bernhart is an award winning author who has published extensively on international development and public health. His credentials for this written outpouring are a PhD (from MIT!) and four decades of international work – currently 50 countries and counting.

The journey from writing funding proposals to writing pure fiction was short and easy. The result is the Max Brown tetralogy (plus 1) which traces the arc (from age 10 through 68) of a man who tries to be proactive, but whose behavior is driven by external events. Each of the five novels finds Max struggling with a new existential crisis – or crises – as he grows up in these trying times. Manhood used to be a birthright; now it seems to be an unending series of challenges. Each novel also finds Max confronting a new face of evil.

The novels occupy an emerging genre provisionally dubbed ‘philosophical thrillers.’

Dr. (why not use it?) Bernhart started this project before the internet could serve up virtual experiences to authors.The contextual information and situations come from service as a pilot in the USAF, living in Asia, Europe and Latin America, and inexplicable success at snaring women well out of his league. These remarkable similarities with the main character noted, he insists the work is not autobiographical. It’s wish fulfillment.

Bernhart currently lives in a yurt on a mountaintop in northern Georgia with one ex-wife, two daughters, and three cats. He still flies his vintage plane, although more cautiously than before, and he’s unshakeable in his conviction that he’s God’s Gift to Aviation.

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How Speleology Restored My Sex Drive: A Max Brown Novel by Michael Bernhart Review

A fantastic adventure story that also highlights key issues that reflect on our current political and moral environment, author Michael Bernhart
has brought to life a fantastic treasure hunting story that involves kidnapping, shootouts, corruption and explosions. That story is How Speleology
Restored My Sex Drive: A Max Brown Novel. While I have not read the previous installments in this series, the author was kind enough to send
this book to me in exchange for an honest review, and so here are my thoughts on the book. First, the synopsis:

Some people can’t stay out of trouble. Happily married, the father of two precocious nine year old girls, and comfortably off, Max Brown should
have it easy. Not yet; that’s where the little girls come in. They maneuver Max and his wife into a dangerous treasure hunt through abandoned
gold mines. As Max forewarns, “the closer you get to the treasure the more competitors show up, some of whom don’t play by the rules.” The
competitors in this case are seven Klansmen who believe that the object of the treasure hunt, a large cache of Confederate gold, is theirs to
finance a second rebellion. Set in northern Georgia, Max combats bears, snakes, and the Klan to protect those he loves. His most cunning and
committed adversaries, though, turn out to be his own children.

Now before I go on, I will say that as a word of warning, if anyone is triggered by dialogue or themes of racism, then this is not the book for
you. While the author does a great job of highlighting the horrors of racism throughout this adventure in the southern United States, the harsh
language (that is very realistic) can be hard to read if that triggers anything, so be careful.

The story was fast paced and well written. Written from a first-person perspective, readers are given insight into the mind of protagonist Max
Brown, and shown the heart-pounding terror that comes from the fear of losing a child. Desperate to save his children, he and his wife Sally
face corrupt cops, Klansmen and the FBI as a simple treasure hunt turns into a deadly battle between racists and parents who go above and beyond
to save their daughters.

Now this is definitely a case of not judging a book by it’s cover. While a simple cover, the title is definitely intriguing yet confusing. Speleology
is the study of cave exploration, and while the title suggests a more “suggestive” theme, this story focuses more on the harsh truths of racism
and the high-octane, blood-pumping action that this adventure brings. Overall this is a must read story for any fans of classic adventure tales
that combine the thrill of an Indiana Jones story with the political climate of our world today. Be sure to pick up your copies of How Speleology
Restored My Sex Drive: A Max Brown Novel by Michael Bernhart today!

Rating: 8/10