This is the backdrop of Turner's latest thriller, Dragon Head, although the story itself becomes much more personal for series hero, Talanov. "What is the life of a person worth?" asks Turner. "This is the question Talanov must answer when his godchild is kidnapped by a crime boss known as 'Dragon Head.' The reason? To force Talanov's compliance with his demands. But Talanov is ordered by the Director of National Intelligence to stand down from attempting a rescue. Why? Because doing so would threaten national security. One life versus many lives. It's a no-brainer, right? Not if such an order is flawed by a deeper, more sinister agenda."
But there is not just one godchild whose life is at risk. There are two others - teenagers - who are volatile, impulsive, and reckless. And they know how to push Talanov's buttons. "Generation gaps can create a lot of fun moments in a book," says Turner, "especially among family members. But they can also create serious danger, which of course is what happens here."
Turner says he lingered on the theme of family (and who constitutes "family") because of what he himself has experienced over the last decade. "One reason was the loss of some of my own family members," he explains, "which can change us in ways we don't comprehend for months and sometimes years. In Dragon Head, Talanov experiences similar losses, and while he's already been through this before, in Dragon Head his loss amplifies the triumph of what happens as a result."
Set in Washington, DC, San Francisco, and Hong Kong, Dragon Head is the chronological sequel to Greco's Game, which has been optioned for film by b3 Media Group, in Los Angeles.
"Turner has created a world that is so rich and unique that I was immediately drawn to Talanov," says b3 Media Group producer, Bret Saxon. "Talanov is an amazing character, and the impossible choices that drove him in Greco's Game have been taken to a new level in Dragon Head. I absolutely love Turner's storytelling and the colorful cast of characters that fill the Talanov world. We are excited for audiences to see the soon-to-be-filmed Greco's Game, and look forward to producing Dragon Head soon afterwards."
Dragon Head launches officially on May 1 with a virtual book tour hosted by Partners in Crime Tours.
For more information on James Houston Turner, visit him on IMDb or his global website.