Swyers writes legal thriller for 2nd book

Photo courtesy Tom Swyers  Niskayuna resident Tom Swyers wrote his second novel, The Killdeer Connection, a legal thriller set in the Capital Region and North Dakota.Photo courtesy Tom Swyers Niskayuna resident Tom Swyers wrote his second novel, The Killdeer Connection, a legal thriller set in the Capital Region and North Dakota.

By Kristin Schultz
Gazette Reporter


NISKAYUNA – The local author who caused a stir with his first book, “Saving Babe Ruth,” is back with a second novel, this time a legal thriller called “The Killdeer Connection.”

As a lawyer himself, Tom Swyers drew on his personal expertise while writing the story about crude oil, terrorism and an innocent man accused of murder.

Now that the book is written, Swyers is looking to publish it, and for that he’s turning to Kindle Scout, a reader-driven Amazon outlet. “The Kildeer Connection” will be available on the website along with other books for 30 days, during which time the public can nominate it for publication. The book that gets the most nominations will be published.

Set both in the Capital Region in the fictional, Niskayuna-inspired town of Indigo Valley, and the oil fields of North Dakota, the novel aims to entertain and inform readers about the dangers of transporting oil via trains and the gas extraction practice of fracking.

“Say 50 percent of the oil that comes out of North Dakota is transported by train and 25 percent of that comes to the Port of Albany. That’s a huge amount of oil,” Swyers said. “They transport it in unit trains which are exclusively carrying oil. That’s 100 cars per train packed with oil. The explosive nature of these trains gave rise to issues in my mind and that’s where I started from.”

That was in 2015, before the tumult of protests that arose in the winter of 2016.

“It’s so timely,” said Swyers. “I can’t believe the things I wrote about a year ago are happening. I knew that fracking was a big issue that was being under-reported a year ago. The media has caught up with it to a certain extent. it was something that needed to be exposed.”

Bringing awareness to “fracking through fiction,” Swyers hopes that his novel will have global appeal, and if he wins the Kindle Scout competition, Amazon will aid in marketing the book, further broadening its reach.

Swyers book went on the Kindle Scout site March 2 and will remain there, able to be nominated for 30 days. He plans to publish the book in paperback himself, just as he did his first novel. Swyers is pleased with all the support he has received.

“The town has really supported me,” he said. “Joe Landry and everyone has been supportive and I really appreciate it. I worked with Christine Perham, a Niskayuna editor. She’s been wonderful.”

Swyers provided the description of the book as it appears on the Kindle Scout site:

“Burned -out lawyer David Thompson is on a mission to prove his innocence. Falsely accused of murder, he must desert his family to unearth the truth from a secret society of bird-watchers. When the feds talk of adding a terrorism charge, the death penalty looms and he’s on the run from both the law and the real killer. On a wild ride through the oil fields of North Dakota, Thompson’s quest to save his own skin explodes into a race to save the nation from a deadly tidal wave of terror. Buckle Up!”

To participate and nominate “The Killdeer Connection,” click here or go to hyperurl.co/NiskyAuthor