Forty-five years ago, author Don Pendleton's War Against the Mafia, the first novel in what would become the international best-selling The Executioner: Mack Bolan Series of Action/Adventure novels, was published. Don Pendleton wrote 37 books in the original series. And now all 37 novels will be released again on December 16th, 2014, this time in ebook editions, published by Open Road Media. The books are now on Pre-Order at Amazon, Kobo, Nook, iTunes, and other ebook retailers.
Don Pendleton is acknowledged as the "father of the modern Action/Adventure novel." His Mack Bolan, The Executioner, theme is "Live Large" and not long ago the Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang, Volume II (H-O) gives derivation credit for "live large" to Don Pendleton and his Executioner Series.
At the height of the Executioner success many publishers and writers attempted to ride on the coattails of Don's success. Some succeeded. Others did not. In many of those books, what appeared to be missing were the elements that Don Pendleton had so skillfully crafted with his presentation of his fictional hero, Mack Bolan.
Don wrote the first novel in the series, War Against the Mafia out of his desire to express his discomfort with the reaction of many Americans to our soldiers who were dying for our country in the jungles of Vietnam and those coming home to outrageous verbal and physical abuse. So Mack Bolan became Don's symbolic statement. He also became every soldier's voice. Don created a heroic character in Bolan, a true hero who was dedicated to justice. The enemy that Bolan had to fight was no longer on the battlefields of Vietnam but right here on American soil, and that enemy was the Mafia.
Within his Bolan stories are strong values with an underlying theme of a higher morality that Bolan follows. More than once Don said about the Executioner novels, "My biggest job throughout writing the series was to keep faith with Bolan–that what he is doing is right. I wanted an enemy beyond redemption–an enemy that all civilized procedures had failed to put down. The Mafia was ready-made. They embodied all the evils of mankind."
Since 1980, the Executioner: Mack Bolan series, pretty much left the Mafia behind, and moved on to fight terrorism within several spinoff series: Phoenix Force, Able Team, Stony Man, Mack Bolan, and The Executioner. Currently close to 1,000 books have been published, based on Don Pendleton's original Mack Bolan character.
In August of 2014, it was announced that Hollywood screenwriter and producer, Shane Salerno had acquired the film rights and a film franchise is planned. And soon after, Warner Brothers announced Bradley Cooper to star.
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