“Death in the Desert” Controversy

Leery, but trusting that the criminals “disguised” by name in the book would never read it, we went forward with publication. And now, with the southern border being overrun with illegal immigrants and criminals of the worst kind, we felt it was past time to give this “Death in the Desert” some serious attention.

There is no doubt that the most controversial book Moonlight Mesa has published is “Death in the Desert,” by R.L. Coffield.

“Death in the Desert” is the third book in the Benjamin Thomas trilogy. And while it was the most controversial of the three books, the award-winning first book, “Northern Escape” was possibly the most popular. As for the second book in the series…well, it’s a long story, but it ends well.

Las Vegas Detective Ben Thomas, Alaska Game Warden Chole Littlebird, outlaw Roy Biers, and the duped, young Max Jessee are the main characters in the “Northern Escape,” which opens and closes in Las Vegas, but primarily takes place in Southeast Alaska. The crime? A two-million dollar heist from a casino in Las Vegas which leads Detective Ben Thomas to Alaska where he’s certain young Max Jessee has fled.

“Death in the Desert,” however, introduces the reader to a host of actual criminals whose names the author changed for obvious reasons. Besides Ben Thomas and Chole Littlebird, the author introduces a highly appealing new character, Jake Starr, a U.S. Marshall. In addition to finally solving the mystery that ends “Northern Escape,” “Death in the Desert” is one of the most revealing, brutal, masterful depictions of the criminal elements involved in the drug and human trafficking trade that occurs daily on the U.S. southern border. The book is definitely not for the queasy.

Leery, but trusting that the criminals “disguised” by name in the book would never read it, we went forward with publication. And now, with the southern border being overrun with illegal immigrants and criminals of the worst kind, we felt it was past time to give this “Death in the Desert” some serious attention.

As for the second, delayed, book in the series, “Northern Conspiracy,” we hesitated… Partly we did so because we felt “Death in the Desert” had to be out as soon as possible. However, there were a multitude of people who bought the first and third books and then would email asking if there was one missing…they felt they had missed something in jumping from book one to three. So…I acquiesced and we published “Northern Conspiracy. ” Upon reflection, I realized that while the characters become more “human” in this novel, the author’s villains are exceptionally crafty, evil, and devious.. I regretted delaying publication of the book.

So, if you want some good summer reads…the books are available on Amazon and are also available as ebooks. Enjoy!

Early Book Release Due to High Demand

3167e-SOOpc2B2BjpegDue to a growing waiting list of people wanting a copy of Saving Our Oceans, we officially released the book May 3, instead of May 15. Buyers want to call in orders…no one seems to trust email for personal information anymore. Calling is just fine – when someone’s here to take the order.

Releasing Saving Our Oceans early is not a problem. In fact, we’re very happy to do so. We were mainly holding back because we’ve been waiting on two people to finish their reviews before we turned the book loose.

Saving Our Oceans should be available on Amazon very shortly. A signed copy can also be ordered from us directly now as we finally received several  boxes of books. And we’re offering Free Shipping to continental U.S. addresses on these early orders.


We have officially selected two of the three 501c3 recipients for the profits earned by Saving Our Oceans.

Our first recipient is the  Save Our Wild Salmon Coalition, a group working to save wild salmon runs for the sake of the salmon, but also for the sake of the Southern Resident Pod of orcas who dine on Chinook salmon almost exclusively. Many orcas in the pod are starving to death due to lack of salmon (chinook). Because of the efforts and hard work of this group, headed by Joseph Bogaard, talks and studies are now underway to explore the possibility of breaching the four Lower Snake River Dams which would allow salmon to reach their spawning grounds…and for the smolt to return to sea without being churned up in turbines. Dam removal would also help lower river water temperature. In addition, for the first time, Washington State and British Columbia will curtail commercial and sport salmon fishing in August. Maybe July too. (Gotta check that out.)

Our second recipient is the Whale Museum in Friday Harbor, Washington. The museum is visited by literally thousands of people a year. We feel very strongly that the museum’s work toward educating people about the Southern Resident Pod and whales in general is of the utmost importance. Because of the organization’s outstanding display of all things “whale” and their excellent educational programs, the museum was chosen to also be a recipient of the net proceeds from Saving Our Oceans.

We have three contenders for third recipient – extremely tough decision! There are many excellent organizations working for cleaner oceans and to save the ocean’s inhabitants. It’s difficult to single out so few when so many are worthy.

Coffield_9However, back to the real world…we do have extensive costs in getting Saving Our Oceans into print. These costs will have to be covered by the sale of books I personally have written since the proceeds from Saving Our Oceans are dedicated. My titles are Life Was a Cabaret: A Tale of Two Fools, a Boat, and a Big-a** Ocean (sailing memoir); The Old Folks in the Boat (rowing); and the Ben Thomas TrilogyNorthern Escape (award-winning suspense); Northern Conspiracy (Mystery);  and Death in the Desert (International Thriller).

MORE NEWS! Jere D. James, our western author,  volunteered to forfeit royalties until the cost of Saving Our Oceans is covered! Jere is the author of the popular 7-book, Jake Silver Adventures series. Jere’s books are locked and loaded with bloody mayhem and serious adventure. So, how about that for some engaging reading this summer?