New York, N.Y. Dell Publishing, 1990. First Printing thus [Stated]. Mass market paperback. , 438,  pages. Gift inscription (not from the author) inside the front free endpaper. Ink mark on verso. Two small tears at the top of the book's spine. Stephen Coonts (born July 19, 1946) is an American spy thriller and suspense novelist. Stephen Coonts earned a B.A. degree in political science at West Virginia University in 1968. After joining the Navy and going to Officer Candidate School, Coonts went to flight school at Pensacola and earned his wings as a Naval Aviator in 1969. Coonts was later assigned to Naval Air Station Whidbey Island to train in the A-6 Intruder, a medium attack, all-weather and carrier-based jet. Coonts was deployed with VA-196 to Vietnam. He served aboard the USS Enterprise (CVN-65) and accumulated 1600 flying hours in the A-6. Coonts was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. Coonts separated from active duty as a lieutenant in 1977 but remained as reserve officer, retiring as a commander with 21 years of service. Coonts began writing Flight of the Intruder in 1984, with the book being published in 1986. The novel, based in part on his experiences as an A-6 pilot during the Vietnam War, remained for 28 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. This launched his career as a novelist, and he continued writing adventure-thrillers, most of them based on the main character from his first book, Jake Grafton. Coonts has also written several other series and stand-alone novels. In 1992, he was inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Alumni at his alma mater, West Virginia University. Coonts continues to write, having had sixteen New York Times bestsellers.
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