What would you think of a Native American girl who grew up hated and impoverished in a bigoted town yet went on to earn two Stanford PhD’s before she turned 22, escaped several assassination attempts to stop a hidden nuclear time bomb, and became a federal agent to recover plutonium stolen from the government for a terrorist attack? That girl, now a young woman, is Essie Openwaters and she will be coming to you soon in Nuclear Time Bomb. Meanwhile, if you would like to know more about her trials growing up, drop me an email at w.michael.hewitt@gmail.com and I will send you a copy of FOR WANT OF A FRIEND for free!


I just reached the three-quarter mark of completing my first draft of STRATAGEM, the sequel to Nuclear Time Bomb.

STRATAGEM finds Essie Openwaters once again locked in a deadly duel with her arch enemy, Ty Rettig, however, her primary mission is to find 16 kilograms of plutonium-239 that was stolen from the Department of Energy’s Savannah River Site. STRATAGEM has dozens of twists and turns that will keep you wondering where it is headed.

Stay turned and please stay safely away from groups of people as well as any idiot in a public place that refuses to wear a mask.


I’ve gone through the editor’s comments and updated NUCLEAR TIME BOMB. Kathy is giving it a final read through before I format it for publication on Amazon in electronic and paperback formats.

Better wear a seat belt because there are a lot of twists and turns in this thriller novel. NUCLEAR TIME BOMB remains on target for publication in early February.


I published NUCLEAR TIME BOMB on Amazon on June 25, 2021. It is available in Kindle and paperback form.

Nuclear Time Bomb is a 96,000-word thriller that pits 21-year-old Dr. Essie Openwaters, a recent Stanford graduate with dual PhDs, against Ty Rettig, a billionaire psychopathic killer whose secrets Essie is inadvertently uncovering.

Raised by her Kootenai Indian father to distrust others in a town bigoted against her, Essie struggles to succeed at her new research scientist job where teamwork is prerequisite. She discovers a 50-year-old memo written on Atomic Energy Commission stationary hidden in a surplus AEC desk. Her inquiries into the memo are reported to Ty Rettig, Undersecretary of Homeland Security, who thought he destroyed the only copy of the memo decades before.

Convinced of the memo’s veracity, Essie ignores a series of threats and soon finds herself the target of multiple assassination attempts. Her life changes when her boss introduces her to an old classmate, currently serving as the National Security Advisor, which leads to Essie supporting the Secretary of Energy in a secret campaign to stop the bomb from devastating part of the Pacific Northwest.

Essie battles government bureaucracy, corrupt government officials, and Rettig’s agents in a race against time.

Nuclear Time Bomb is a story of love, hate, survival, and Essie discovering who she is. Nuclear Time Bomb is the first in a series of Essie Openwaters techno-thriller novels. The second in the series, Stratagem, is under beta review and will be published in 2022.

Check me out on FaceBook as well. As always, stay tuned and stay safe.





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Like to Read a Good Thriller?

Twenty-one-year-old Dr. ESSIE OPENWATERS is brilliant, beautiful and a loner. Raised by her Kootenai Indian father in an abandoned wooden shack, Essie grew up friendless, motherless, and poor. She was stronger, faster, and more intelligent than her classmates. A year after her father was killed, she received an early scholarship to college. Five years later she earned her second PhD at Stanford University and began her dream job as a research scientist in a national laboratory. While struggling to adapt to meet the laboratory’s teamwork expectations, Essie’s life flips upside down when her discovery pits her against a psychopathic billionaire who perceives Essie’s death as the only way to protect deep secrets that could destroy him.



Back At It

I took some time off to contemplate comments received from my editor on STRATAGEM. Interestingly enough, they inspired me to rewrite NUCLEAR TIME BOMB and republish it as MALICIOUS DECEPTION. I built a fish pond in the backyard which gave me lots of time to contemplate (and hand place six tons of rocks). Now I’m starting back on MALICIOUS DECEPTION which I plan to have ready for beta reads around Christmas.

Malicious Deception

MALICIOUS DECEPTION is essentially complete. It goes to the copy editor on February 25th, to the proofreader the first week of April, and to Amazon for publishing on June 1st. It is a total remake of NUCLEAR TIME BOMB that moves faster, is more engaging, has less technogobble, and enhances Dr. Essie Openwaters’ challenges and personality.

Twenty-one-year-old Essie Openwaters armed with two PhDs from Stanford (chemical engineering and earth sciences) starts her dream job as a research scientist at a national laboratory only to find her childhood demons keep her from being a team player and threaten her job. When she finds a fifty-year-old memo carefully hidden in a surplus US Atomic Energy Commission desk she was refinishing, her attempt to validate it lead her into dark world of Ty Rettig, a psychopathic billionaire with secrets to protect.

Malicious Deception

MALICIOUS DECEPTION, a techno thriller novel featuring Dr. Essie Openwaters, is now available on Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/Malicious-Deception-stop-billionaire-psychopath-ebook/dp/B09XLW9ML6/ref=sr_1_3?crid=93FYENKK6QYG&keywords=w+michael+hewitt&qid=1649701658&sprefix=%2Caps%2C87&sr=8-3). Dr. Essie Openwaters, a twenty-one-year-old Native American, starts her new dream job as a research scientist at Washington National Research Laboratory only to find the inner demons planted during her childhood prevent her from being a team player, a requirement to remain at the laboratory. When she finds a fifty-year-old memo in a surplus Atomic Energy Commission desk, life turns into a nightmare as she struggles to prevent a nuclear time bomb from devastating the Pacific Northwest while dodging assassins dispatched by Ty Rettig, a psychopathic billionaire who must stop Essie from uncovering the secrets the memo could lead to.

Malicious Deception is a major rewrite of a previous novel, Nuclear Time Bomb.