The Middle of the Air

A truck hauling materials from the Savannah River Nuclear Processing Site to Oak Ridge National Laboratories disappears along a mountainous stretch of interstate between Asheville, North Carolina, and Knoxville, Tennessee. Suddenly, certain elements in the government want to find the missing truck before they have to admit it ever existed. This sounds like a standard government conspiracy plot except for the Colebrooks, who become the prime suspects in what someone in the government is trying to frame as a terrorist incident.

The family members bring attention to themselves when the oldest son's daughter discovers an unmanned low-level surveillance plane with a radiation sensor on board. The drone has crashed near the archaeological site they are trying to keep secret. The other sons become involved as they try to learn who was controlling the drone and why. When the second son discovers his security clearance has been revoked and the third learns his student status is under review, the family paraphrases a line from Bob Dylan to describe their situation: “You know something is happening but you don't know what it is.”

The search for the missing truck quickens as the family races against nefarious government powers. Along the way, they confront Army Rangers along the Appalachian Trail and conduct a late-night stealth mission to an abandoned NASA tracking station deep in the mountains. All of the pieces of the puzzle eventually fall together. In the end, good conquers evil--but with a surprise twist.