Rick Campbell
May 3, 2024

RICK CAMPBELL, a retired Navy Commander, served on four nuclear-powered submarines, finishing his career with tours in the Pentagon and the Washington Navy Yard. On his last submarine, he was one of the two men whose permission is required to launch the submarine’s nuclear-warhead-armed missiles.

Upon retirement from the Navy, Rick was offered a two-book deal by Macmillan / St. Martin’s Press for his novel The Trident Deception, which was hailed by Booklist as “The best submarine novel written in the last thirty years, since Tom Clancy’s classic – The Hunt for Red October”. His first six books were Barnes & Noble Top-10 and Amazon #1 bestsellers, and the 7th and 8th books in the series are scheduled for release in April 2024 and Spring 2025.

Interview by Elise Cooper

Q: What inspired the idea for this story?

Rick: I did address the question you asked last time if there will be more of Christine. The overlying question, is did America really kill Bin Laden? By dumping his body in the ocean, what happened to the conclusive proof? The book is set up in this way: did he live, but after they did get the DNA analysis was it proof, or was it covered up with a fake DNA analysis? All the technology is definitely feasible. I need to deliver a submarine thriller.


Q: What can readers expect from the development of the relationship?

Rick: Christine and Harrison must work through their issues. It will resolve itself to some extent. In the relationship, they still love each other, with Harrison’s wife feeling inferior and jealous of Christine. They still care for each other, but Christine is very careful not to cross the red line in the sand. Going back a couple of novels after she was put through a lot on the submarine, she did ask Harrison about his relationship at home. She was trying to be honorable and not have an affair.


Q: How is the professional dynamic between Khalila and Harrison portrayed in this book?

Rick: He considers her a sociopath. She could be a double agent and ruthless. She trusts him completely, but Harrison is having problems trusting her.


Q: How would you characterize Lonnie Mixell, one of the antagonists?

Rick: He feels betrayed, someone seeking revenge and vengeance. He is disloyal because he was a former friend of Christine and Harrison. He has anger-management issues. Someone who is pure evil.


Q: Can you tell us about the other antagonist, Secretary of the Navy Brenda Verbeck?

Rick: She is conniving, power-hungry, manipulative, ambitious, and ruthless. I do reference if someone is wealthy and powerful, they get away with what normal people don’t. She is resentful and vindictive.


Q: What can we expect from the next book?

Rick: It is titled Vengeance, probably out in the spring/summer of next year. There are four characters who all want revenge. Christine will be a central figure, as will Khalila, and it will have as one of the settings, the Middle East. I will write these types of books if I have good plots. My challenge is that at least 1/3 of the plot must be submarine-based.

I signed a six-book contract with another publisher for a different series. It is military-science fiction. I am a science fiction fan, which is where my passion lies. It takes place 1000 years in the future. The basic premise: humanity has been at war with an alien species for three decades.

Review by Elise Cooper

The Bin Laden Plot by Rick Campbell is a great military-espionage story. The book has the CIA Director, Christine O’ Connor, along with a former SEAL, Jake Harrison, now a CIA contractor, working together to find out if there is a cover up that includes dangerous acts of corruption, even treason.

This plot starts with the destruction of a destroyer in the Persian Gulf. The explanation from the Secretary of Navy is that it was the result of a rogue UUV (Unmanned Underwater Vehicle). A decision is made to send a submarine to destroy it, headed by Murray Wilson, the USS Michigan Captain.

At the same time, Lonnie Mixell, a former U.S. operative, now assassin for hire, is responsible for eliminating those SEALS responsible for killing Bin Laden, including Jake Harrison, a fellow SEAL, who was also on the mission. CIA Director Christine O’Connor is suspicious about who is really behind the killing and what really happened with the UUV. This pits her and Jake working together again to find out what is really happening.

This story will take readers on another thrill ride with unexpected twists and turns.  In some ways it is a cliff hanger with the groundwork set for the next novel.

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