Cataloochee Man   A Novel


    The way that you wander is the way that you choose.  
 The day that you tarry is the day that you lose.

                                    From Jeremiah’s Song

          While horseback riding in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Layla Turner discovers Abe Ramsey, a buckskin-clad hunter who secretly lives in the Cataloochee Valley. Only after she falls in love with Abe does Layla learn that he lives in the park as a fugitive from the FBI. Abe is a member of the Panther Patrol, a notorious, eco-terrorist band that opposes logging in nearby Pisgah National Forest by blowing up logging machinery.

          Only after Abe falls in love with Layla, does he learn that she is the daughter-in-law of Malcolm Elmore, Governor of North Carolina. Governor Elmore advocates for more extensive logging of North Carolina’s national forests. The Governor’s long-time friend, wealthy logging magnate and ruthless businessman, Kenneth Leyman receives a lucrative contract to log in Pisgah National Forest.

          Layla and Abe reveal the details of their lives piecemeal over the course of intimate rendezvous in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Meanwhile, skirmishes between the Panther Patrol, the FBI, and Kenneth Leyman’s henchmen escalate into a deadly conflict. The extraordinary final confrontation brings an end to the logging of Pisgah National Forest and changes Layla's life, forever.

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