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Mystery at the Thirteen Sycamores is the first of a trilogy of mystery novels in the works by author Frank Faunce. The Seton Secret is set as a sequel to Mystery and is planned for release in 2017 as a serial on this website, as well as in paperback and Kindle editions on Amazon.


Work begins on The Seton Secret


NOVEMBER 28, 2016--Frank Faunce announced that work has begun on The Seton Secret, the sequel to Mystery at the Thirteen Sycamores.


Seton Secret begins with protagonists Dietrich and Natalie von Schoenfeld resuming their quest for the whereabouts of early Christian artifacts which are believed to be hidden beneath the ruins of ancient Saint Mary Chapel that caps the crest of Mount Lothian in Southern Scotland. Upon entering the tomb of a knight from the famed Knights Templar hidden beneath the ruins, they find the artifacts have been removed and that additional clues have been provided that lead to their location. And so begins another journey across Europe and the Middle East in search of the origins of early Christianity as Muslim jihadists race to thwart their efforts.

The Seton Secret brings back many of the characters from Mystery at the Thirteen Sycamores - Drs. Christopher and Carolyn Rood, Inspector Steve and Kate Grant, and Dr. Randall Fox. A serial release of chapters is planned at, as well as paperback and Kindle e-book editions.


Mystery at the Thirteen Sycamores now at Amazon


Mystery at the Thirteen Sycamores, written by two veterans of the Vietnamese War and Operation Desert Storm, is a pulse pounding suspense set in the modern world of Jihadist terror and intrigue with home grown terrorist cells growing like mushrooms. After a German Luftwaffe squadron annihilates a group of Taliban terrorists in Afghanistan, the surviving leader of the group vows to track and kill the commander of the squadron, his family, and anyone else who gets in the way of his revenge. The action takes place in the Middle East behind the "Crescent Curtain" and in the cosmopolitan cities of Europe before spilling over onto the shores of America. It reaches a nail biting surprising conclusion deep in the heartland of the United States.

Authors Frank R. Faunce and Joe C. Rudé III have created a fictional novel that is based on fact and the real secret behind ISIS terrorism. Their military experience and travels throughout Europe and North America provided the background for this timely tale that is replete with vivid imagery that projects the reader into the action from one location to the next. The book is available in paperback and Kindle e-book formats at and online at other major book retailers.

Dr. Faunce is a retired United States Army colonel. He was commissioned as a captain during the Vietnamese War, was activated for duty during Operation Desert Storm, and his last assignment overseas was in Mogadishu, Somalia. He was the command dental surgeon of the Third United States Army and served overseas in most of the Middle Eastern Countries and in East Africa. In between deployments, he maintained a private dentistry practice, was an associate professor and department chair at Emory University in Atlanta, wrote many scientific papers and articles, and lectured extensively at universities in the United States, Canada, Mexico, Europe and Asia. He is an officer of the Venerable Order of Saint John of Jerusalem whose sovereign head is Queen Elizabeth II.

Dr. Rudé joined the United States Air Force after medical school and internship, and served in Vietnam as a flight surgeon, flying 48 combat missions as the weapons systems operator in the back seat of F-4 Phantoms. For this he was awarded the Air Medal with two Oak Leaf Clusters. After a radiology residency and fellowship at Emory University, he practiced diagnostic and interventional radiology for 37 years in Atlanta, Georgia. During that time, he was elected chief-of-staff and was appointed to the Board of Trustees of one of his hospitals and served as a clinical associate professor at both the Emory University School of Medicine and the School of Dentistry. He has held multiple offices in the Hospitaller Order of Saint John of Jerusalem and in many genealogical and heraldic organizations, and was awarded several knighthoods.

They are now working on the sequels to Mystery at the Thirteen Sycamores.

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