Ben Huntley’s tenure at the U.S. Embassy in Cyprus is frustrated by Greek-Turkish squabbles, Russian human traffickers, and bureaucratic superiors. Writing reports has only further jaded the Afghanistan War veteran.
When his best friend goes missing, Ben and investigator Artemis Nelson, discover that he was murdered en route to a secret British installation and that Israel is withholding information on a terror plot known as “The Hand of God” for its own profit. They encounter an idealistic Mossad agent willing to betray Israel to free her lover and a terrorist mastermind dreaming of a new Islamic Age. Ben must mourn the death of his friend and face his own Gulf War demons. His greatest consolation may be his new partner.
In Morocco a team of SEALs and micro-drones fail to capture the terrorists in a deadly operation leaving Ben’s ragtag team to intercept the Islamic fundamentalists. In the Atlantic, a research ship is robbed of a sonic device capable of destabilizing terrain. With the capture of a terrorist, the heroes learn that La Palma is the ultimate target and that Western civilization will be brought to its knees by a landslide-created tsunami.
The team boards a helicopter which crashes in the desert leaving the heroes scrambling. On La Palma the heroes are aided by Kal Thornaksen, an enigmatic powerbroker. La Palma’s new geologist, Enrique, is smitten by Italian seismologist Isabella Giannini. The two are alarmed by recent spikes in seismologic activity and fear a catastrophic planet wide event. Enrique identifies a geologic feature from his youth as the fault that portends the destructive landslide everyone fears.
The Islamic mastermind sails into a coastal cave and attacks the island’s fault using sonic waves. Enrique leads the heroes into mountain tunnels to stop the attack. Truckloads of ANFO explode, initiate a landslide, and send sections of earth into the ocean. Volcanic explosions embroil towns and a section of western La Palma. A lava tube is sheared revealing sky and ocean and our heroes intact. A tsunami speeds for the Americas.
Hand of God ends at the Thornaksen estate on La Palma. The heroes learn of the tsunami’s effects on the U.S. and that the Israeli whistle blower exposed Israeli duplicity via Facebook. Thornaksen sees the catastrophe as the dawn of a new world age and offers Ben a part in recreating society via his many enterprises.
An Author’s Note and an Appendix end the novel. The Appendix provides for further exploration of characters, the geology and technologies of the story. The Author’s Note gives a brief intro to the 1958 Alaska tsunami as the largest wave ever recorded and landslide-triggered tsunamis as the earth’s most destructive forces. Mega-tsunamis have originated from La Palma in the past as evidenced by landslide debris strewn in the ocean around the island. A tsunami triggered by man such as postulated in Hand of God is unlikely, however one triggered by a volcanic eruption or an earthquake is the American Continent’s worst nightmare and only a matter of time.