HomeHorrorWar, Vengeance and Human Nature: This Author Reveals the Very

    War, Vengeance and Human Nature: This Author Reveals the Very

    The Sava Steps by Lee Lindauer

    During the Bosnian War in 1995, a Dutch Battalion of the United Nations Protective Force was charged with providing peacekeeping operations, protecting the “safe zone” and preventing the escalation of atrocities on local villagers. It is said that the Dutch did not live up to that responsibility; the event was later dubbed the Srebenica Genocide. And it’s this tragically under-recognized genocide that serves as the catalyst for the events of The Sava Steps.

    Author Lee Lindauer took some time with us to discuss his most recent release, a thriller that builds off of the Bosnian War into a tale of espionage and one character’s personal vengeance. He outlines how history, war and human nature influenced this charged work of fiction — a fiction that still captures the cruelty that our own society is very much capable of.

    Q: What inspired you to tell this harrowing story of revenge, survival and the lasting impacts of the Srebrenica Massacre?

    A: The Bosnian conflict after the breakup of Yugoslavia is a subject that has been on my mind for a quite a while, and one that hasn’t received a fair amount of publicity, even when it was ongoing in the nineties. It is a period of time that most young people nowadays don’t recall as history, or have never heard about. But for the tragedies and genocide that occurred, it is as shocking, real and for every one of the 8,000 Muslims that were slaughtered in Srebrenica, there is a story. For that reason, it is encumbered upon us not to let the gears of time gloss over this reality and allow it to slip into the dustbins of history.

    Q: What was the research process like for this book?

    A: The process was time consuming, internet, library, books such as Eyewitness to Genocide by Roy Gutman, Pulitzer Prize winner for international reporting. Not only did I research the Bosnian conflict which includes Srebrenica but also the horrific details of illegal organ harvesting and transplants. Both these subjects in my view lead to the shocking nature that human beings possess — the dreadful trait of killing one another.

    Q: Is there something that drew you to telling a story that featured the Bosnian War, an often-overlooked part of history?

    A: The Bosnian War is overlooked, by most of the Western World, but for those in the region, it is a constant reminder of things that can go incredibly wrong. Bodies will still be exhumed for years to come and the reminders of the atrocities committed will be far from being purged. For the people of the region, grief and despair are continuing emotions that have a grip on their realities.

    Q: How do you go about writing a suspenseful thriller?

    A: Outline … outline … outline … then first draft … second draft … rewrite … third draft, copy editing, line editing, all these steps at this point are vital for a clean manuscript. Characters are key, point of view must be controlled, and the plot must keep moving forward. Three years or so later, I finished it, but in any novel in my humble opinion, you’re never completely satisfied. There is always room for improvement. Word choices, sentence structure and pacing are subtle facets that make a reader want to continue with excitement or cash it in.

    Q: What do you hope readers take away from your novel?

    A: I hope they take away an understanding of what genocide can do to fellow human beings. We live in a complex, dangerous world and as the populations grow, resources become rare, war, pestilence climate change and acts of inhumanity will multiply. Are we ready to counter this out of control future?

    Q: What’s next on your list? Will we see any more from the characters of The Sava Steps? Or do you have another new story in the works?

    A: I finished a novel titled The Salvation of Henry Maxwell, which is a change from the international thriller genre of The Sava Steps and Irrational Fears. This novel is a combination modern Gothic/romance/thriller. Next on the list is a novel tentatively titled Misdirection. Both these novels are character driven with mind-bending plots.

    Lee Lindauer has a BS in Architectural Engineering and a MS in Civil Engineering and was a principal of a consulting structural engineering firm he founded in Western Colorado. With this background, he combines fast-paced plots and intriguing characters in authentic technical and natural settings to produce an emotional rollercoaster ride for the reader. He is a member of the International Thriller Writers, has appeared on author panels at ThrillerFest and has served as co-editor on the Big Thrill magazine. He and his wife Teri divide their time between home base Grand Junction, Colorado and Mesquite, Nevada.

    Visit the author’s website at

    The Sava Steps by Lee Lindauer

    Publish Date: November 22, 2022

    Author: Lee Lindauer

    Page Count: 274 pages

    Publisher: Story Merchant

    ISBN: 9781970157338

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