book, The Last Witness, in the Badge of Honor series
(written by the legendary author W.E.B. Griffin and his son
William E. Butterworth IV) is a very insightful novel. It
is a story of corruption, the difficulty in fighting it, drug
cartels, and the violence connected with them. Both father
and son discuss their books.
The main character, Philadelphia homicide detective Matt Payne,
has been brought onto a case involving a connection between
the Mexican drug cartels and the Russian mob. These organizations
lure teenage girls away from their foster homes, and ultimately
smuggle them into a sex trade operation. Some of these girls
are being murdered and the one surviving witness has gone
underground. Payne knows that finding this witness is critical
to solving the case. He must find her before the Russians,
the cartels, and some of Philadelphia's most powerful mobsters
get to her first.
Butterworth IV wants readers to understand the importance
and realism of this plot. He hopes they will view this as
a warning about the drug cartels, that they are not just in
the Border States and cities, but within the interior of the
US. "I was getting depressed as I wrote about the viciousness
of the cartels. 90% of this book is based on fact, but we
did not want to preach, but to tell it as a story, which is
why we had as a character a Texas Ranger that spoke from his
experiences. At the end of the day we wanted to make a point
and have an entertaining novel."
Both father and son enjoy writing together and never see it
as a problem. They are able to converse back and forth, mainly
through emails. In comparing the two, Griffin noted, "I
know more about the army than Billy does, while he knows more
about the cops than I do. Yet, we both contribute to all of
They also gave a heads up about their next few books. This
December will be the last book in the Presidential Agent series.
Since Griffin has written a series of twelve M*A*S*H books
with Richard Hooker, the real Hawkeye, he decided to use that
format for this book by turning it into a satire with humor.
The authors are transitioning The Honor Bound series to a
new series, starring Jim Cronley, that goes back to Cold War
days and how the Americans fought the Communists, titled End
of Innocence. Griffin commented, "Fortunately I
am in a position that I can write what I choose. I want to
inform since a lot of people don't know about this era of
After reading The Last Witness people will be able
to learn the facts and question the reality of events. This
entertaining novel allows for a way of visiting events in
this country that are often overlooked.