Three Kisses is an interesting excursion into the world of terrorism and espionage. As the author explains at the end of the book the plot itself is entirely fictional as are the characters, although he has drawn on a number of actual reported events and meshed them together.

For the most part this is an entertaining romp that contains action in North America and parts of the Middle East. A key catalyst of the plot being the disenfranchisement of Arabs living in the US post 9/11. That part for sure is factual. I have seen and read any number of TV and newspaper articles on this specific subject. There was one phrase that I read a while ago that I think sums the situation up quite well, ‘Not all Muslims are terrorists, but all terrorists seem to be Muslim’. A rather bleak view of a significant percentage of the worlds population.

The plot itself is a fairly simple one, al Qaeda wishes to obtain some secret material from a US Airforce base, this is to be done by using a double of a US officer. The officer in question is of Lebanese descent, in other words Middle Eastern. Although al Qaeda have no one in their ranks that can fit the bill, they do find a Syrian medical doctor, Ali Salman. Ali is persuaded to assist in the plot by the promise of a new life in the US once the job is done. A Russian cosmetic surgeon is employed to make the needed facial alterations. Of course altering a face is one thing, there are parts of the human anatomy where alterations are more tricky, but more on that later.

In a hugely convoluted plot Ali is smuggled into the US and the game is on. The real Patrick Ferris is to be drugged for a day in order to give the double the opportunity to get on and off the base with the classified material.

The plan derails when Ali goes to the washroom and a gay colleague glances at his penis, and realizes that it is different from Patrick’s. This sets in motion a series of events in the Middle East, Canada, the US, and Mexico, even Cuba has an involvement! Little by little the authorities start to piece together what is going on, and who is behind the plot. Various people have various tid bits of information. One of the major problems is trying to determine who the good guys are and who the bad guys are. As more of the story comes together, the more bizarre it becomes.

Three Kisses is a busy novel and covers an enormous range of subplots and characters. While Patrick Ferris is the focal point of the plot, he really is not the main character. In fact I am really not sure that there is a main character, Heath Daniels spreads that glory across a number of folks in various portions  of the book.

For the most part I found Three Kisses an enjoyable read, however I do feel that Heath Daniels maybe dwelt a little to much in the homosexual arena, and the whole subject of male genitalia. At over 600 pages Three Kisses is a pretty hefty read, maybe a little too hefty for some people.

You can order your copy from Amazon. Heath Daniels also has a web site.

Simon Barrett

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