Did Osama Bin Laden ever visit the Isle of Man?
That is the question posed in the latest novel, Bin Laden’s Nemesis, by author and Manxman Robert Kermeen.
Mr Kermeen, who was born in Onchan and was a pupil at Murray’s Road and what was then the Douglas High School for Boys, now lives in the Cheshire town of Alsager and writes under the pseudonym RW Kay.
He conceived the idea for the book, which is the second in a trilogy, after working in the RAF and only started writing after he retired in 2005.
‘I became a teacher and taught for a time at Ramsey Grammar but spent 39 years with the Air Force educational branch.
‘The first book was going to be a serious analysis of the Iran-Iraq war but I decided I could make it into a novel,’ he said.
‘That was in 2009 and the people who wrote critiques asked when was the follow up. I’m now writing the third and final book which brings all the characters together.’
The first 11 chapters of the current book are all set in the Isle of Man with recognisable locations, he said.
‘And, of course, the hero is a Manxman.’
The novel is set against the background of the IRA peace negotiations in 1990 and speculates that many of the decommissioned arms would have been sold off to terrorist organisations such as al-Qaeda, with some of the trade taking place in the Isle of Man.
This is where undercover agent, Manxman and general hero of the piece Juan Quayle becomes involved as a terrorist infiltrator.
Writing the book involved Mr Kermeen in a diverse variety of research – from the functioning of al-Qaeda to the most intimate workings of the Aga oven – which plays a significant role in the storyline.
He says locals will readily identify the pub which features in the south of the island and anyone who has had a brush with the law might also think they recognise a certain high bailiff who presides over a court hearing.
‘I was in the middle of dealing with the book when the Americans caught Bin Laden, but I like to think I got there first,’ he said.
Described by the publishers as ‘a believable tale of deception, espionage and politics’, the book is published by Matador and costs £7.99.
The final book in Mr Kermeen’s trilogy is due to be published by the end of next year.
Search for a job
Search for a car
Search for a house
Weather for Isle of Man
Thursday 23 May 2013
Temperature: 6 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 35 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 7 C to 14 C
Wind Speed: 23 mph
Wind direction: North