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Fiction Review   

Gum's Story
by Rick Turnbull
Harbor House, 2002
Hardcover, $26.95 (246 pages)

While on a furniture shopping trip to North Carolina, Vietnam veteran Phillip Turner memories are triggered by a photo in a newspaper and a promise he made to a young Vietnamese boy.  The man in the picture is retired Colonel Chu, who is now honored as a war hero.  Phillip remembers him as the cold-blooded killer of his young friend, Gum.   

Phillip Turner begins his mission to bring Colonel Clu to justice.  He goes to Washington, D.C. to see his friend and Representative John Robinson, who agrees to help.  Needing more evidence, Phillip goes to Kentucky to see his dying Colonel Ben Danworth, who is eager to provide a variety of evidence against his former partner in a Vietnam to United States drug run.  Danworth and Cluís American connection is Bill Geevers, who still has CIA clearance and is putting up roadblocks for Phillip. 

Gumís Story is a beautiful story of a young manís Vietnam experience.  His young Vietnam friend is named ďGumĒ because of his love for bubblegum.  He is collecting the wrappers for a new bike promotion.  The current day plot also shows Phillipís strong family life in Georgia with his wife and 7 year-old son.  

The novel is also a fast-paced suspense thriller as Phillip connects to a cyber hacker to locate Colonel Chu, then travels to California for a showdown.   

Rick Turnbull is the son of a career Army officer.  He started writing in the eighth grade under Eliot Wigginton at the Foxfire School.  His service as a crew-chief on C5-A cargo jets during the Vietnam War inspired Gumís Story. Rick Turnbull lives in South Carolina with his wife, daughter and two dogs. 


Joyce Dixon
Southern Scribe Reviews


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