Mogi Franklin and his sister Jennifer are delighted to be attending a high school science conference in New Mexico amidst a hundred thousand acres of meadows, mountains, rivers, and volcanoes far older than recorded time. But their focus quickly changes when they learn of the disappearance fifty years ago of a plane with two hundred pounds of plutonium—and of the terrorist nations vying today to find it in those same mountains.
Soon, they are engulfed in a complex web of Russian spies, government lies and deceit, an old box full of clues, and the real possibility that the shipment bound decades ago for nearby Los Alamos national laboratory is indeed hidden tantalizingly close to their conference center. Puzzling over the mystery, Mogi sets out with some friends on a backpacking trip to a remote lake. Too late they realize their mistake, as a minor forest fire suddenly explodes into the most dangerous blaze in the state’s history, trapping Mogi and the others right in its path.
They’re fighting for their lives in this fifth book of the Mogi Franklin Mysteries, and if he’s going to come up with a way out, he’d better do it fast!
Preview (coming soon)
About the Author
Donald Willerton was raised in a small oil boomtown in the Panhandle of Texas, becoming familiar through family vacations with the northern New Mexico area where he now makes his home.
After earning a degree in physics from Midwestern State University in Texas and a master’s in computer science and electrical engineering from the University of New Mexico, he worked for Los Alamos National Laboratory for almost three decades.
During his career there, Willerton was a supercomputer programmer for a number of years and a manager after that for “way too long,” and also worked on information policy and cyber-security.
He finds focusing on only one thing very difficult among such varied interests as home building, climbing Colorado’s tallest peaks, and rafting the rivers of the Southwest (including the Colorado through Grand Canyon). Willerton also has owned a handyman business for a number of years, rebuilt old cars, and made furniture in his woodshop.
He is a wanderer in both mind and body, fascinated with history and its landscape, varied peoples and their cultures, good mysteries, secrets, and seeking out treasure. Most of all, he loves the outdoors and the places he finds in the Southwest where spirits live and ghosts dance. Weaving it all together to share with readers has been the driving force of Willerton’s writing over the past twenty years.
Praise for The Lake of Fire
FIVE THINGS TO LIKE ABOUT:THE LAKE OF FIRE
The story will entice young readers to spend time at an environmental science camp. A lot of cool stuff to get brain cells moving.
The New Mexico setting is one every person should visit at least once in their lifetime.
The dangers of forest fires are told in a bold and exciting way, not only during but after the fire passes. I was fascinated how the lake plays such an important source of survival.
Mogi’s love of figuring out puzzles is one that will attract many readers with the same interest.
There was no cliffhanger ending. Every plot point comes to a satisfying end even with all that went on in the fast pace book. Well, everything except finding out what Phil’s problem was…
Excellent series for teens. I've read all of the Mogi Franklin Mystery Series. I got a complete set for my grandson who reported on the Lost City of La Rosa for a class book report. His class was very intrigued and amazed. The books are so exciting - real page turners. It's a must read series for every teenager because it's about teenagers. —Deanne Rubenzer ___________
I thoroughly enjoyed this book! Realistic and true to life. I could not predict what was coming next which always make a great mystery. —Jeffry C. Shepherd