STORYTELLING

“Truly marvelous. Patriarch Run is a breathless thriller disguising a heart of pure poetry; a literary meditation clutching a straight razor behind its back. Bold, beautifully written, and surprising page-by-page, this is one of the most assured debuts I’ve ever read. Benjamin Dancer is the real thing.” -MARCUS SAKEY, bestselling author of The Brilliance Trilogy

 

"Patriarch Run accomplishes something few thrillers have achieved: it gets the guns right, and it gets the psychology of the gunfight right. Benjamin Dancer writes the gunfight scenes with a realism seldom seen in fiction.” - LT. COL. DAVE GROSSMAN, author of On Killing: The Psychological Cost of Learning to Kill in War and Society and On Combat: The Psychology and Physiology of Deadly Conflict in War and in Peace

 

“Unsparing, violent and cinematic, Patriarch Run starts with a bang and doesn’t let up. Benjamin Dancer is an immensely talented writer; his assured, lean prose and stark realism will appeal to fans of Cormac McCarthy and Don Winslow.” - A. J. BANNER, international bestselling author of The Good Neighbor

 

"Benjamin Dancer tells a story that moves at breakneck speed and draws you into the mind of a madman. The story is packed with realistic gunfights, and the bad guy presents an apocalyptic vision that haunts us because of how easily his nightmare can become our reality." - SCOTT PRATT, author of the bestselling Joe Dillard Series

 

Patriarch Run is a hard-shooting kick of a thriller. The first time through, I read it in a rush, my head on fire. But it’s also a novel shot through with intelligence and humanity. So the second time, I put the fires out and forced myself to read slow and cold, taking in Dancer’s every insightful word. This is a spectacular book, and I can’t recommend it more.” - BENJAMIN WHITMER, author of Pike and Cry Father

 

“From the first page, Patriarch Run will hook you, reel you in, pull you out of the pond, and leave you gasping for breath at the bottom of the rowboat!” - GREGORY HILL, author of The Lonesome Trials of Johnny Riles, Colorado Book Award winner

 

Patriarch Run is a great novel. Fast-paced, frighteningly realistic, and on par with some of the best thrillers in the genre.” - ISAAC HOOKE, USA Today bestselling author of The Atlas Series

 

“Full of action and realistic gunfights, Patriarch Run is one heck of a ride. It takes off and keeps going, right up to the apocalypse!” - G. MICHAEL HOPF, author of The New World Series

 

“In this story of lives colliding, Dancer walks the line between action and emotion, weaving the two with a careful hand. Dancer's characters are as finely chiseled as the land where they make their home.” - RACHEL WEAVER, author of Point of Direction

 

Patriarch Run is a thriller with a soul. At first glance, it's a realistic spy novel, vetted and endorsed by national security experts. It's also a coming-of-age story that captures in intimate detail the universal longing for a father. And behind the heart-pounding plot and the rich characters, readers will find a thought provoking narrative that informs the way they see both themselves and the world around them.” - MAURA WEILER, author of Contrition

 

Patriarch Run is, in its heart, an old-school western set in modern-day Colorado. A strong, independent woman and her mountain-bred son learn that her husband, missing in the special ops world for ten years, is back and as much of a puzzle as ever. Dancer’s swift, efficient chapters come at you like machine-gun fire until the final bullet gives them all some peace. Just my kind of story.” - MICHAEL MADIGAN, author of Double Dare, Colorado Book Award winner

 

“Written with heart and guts, Benjamin Dancer's action-packed debut is as exciting as it gets.” - ERIKA KROUSE, author of Contenders

 

Patriarch Run is fast-paced, artful thriller set amid a Rocky Mountain backdrop in which three resourceful members of one family—a mother, son, and estranged father—must contend with a barrage of attacks by mysterious forces. Two of the characters are innocent and one has lost his memory, so the reader discovers along with them the relentless and international nature of their opponents, as well as the secrets that split them apart years earlier. Dancer writes, with precisely-described action and convincing detail, of gunfights, daring escapes, and harrowing rescues, as well as the love that keeps a mother and son seeking each other long after less indomitable souls would have given up.” - JENNY SHANK, author of The Ringer, High Plains Book Award winner

 

“Gripping thriller from the very first page! One of those rare novels where the story and characters are equally riveting.” - STEVE RICHER, author of The President Killed His Wife

 

Patriarch Run is a page–turner that also gives pause, as a teenage boy comes of age, a secret agent confronts fatherhood, and the battle is on over a stolen cyber-weapon and a massive environmental threat to national security: overpopulation. Benjamin Dancer takes readers to a small town where buffalo still roam to set spy versus spy and to ask big questions: is it more important to protect our children, to prepare them for life’s cruel realities, or to make a better world for us all? Dancer suggests it’s not only whether we survive that matters, but how we live.” - CARA LOPEZ LEE, author of They Only Eat Their Husbands

REALISM

"The description of the vulnerabilities of our infrastructures, especially that of the often neglected-to-mention vulnerability of our food supply system due to its dependency on the long term availability of electricity, seems to me both accurate and thought provoking. Or at least, it ought to be. Works such as this may serve a larger purpose than ‘mere’ entertainment by alerting the public, and even some government agencies, to the dangers that lurk out there while there is still opportunity to do something about them in a way that often obscure official reports and studies are unable to accomplish." - DR. MICHAEL J. FRANKEL, former Executive Director of the EMP Commission; former Associate Director for Advanced Energetics and Nuclear Weapons, Office of the Deputy Undersecretary of Defense (S&T); Chief Scientist, Nuclear Phenomenology Division, Defense Threat Reduction Agency; Congressional Fellow, US Senate; Chief Scientist, SDIO Lethality Program; Research Physicist at the Naval Surface Weapons Center; National Security Fellow at The Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory

 

Patriarch Run captures the vulnerability of our nation’s critical infrastructure. In this case the fiction is as frightening as the reality. A seemingly futuristic story about a new way of warfare, played out against a seemingly futuristic background of disillusioned patriotism, divided personal loyalties, and identity crisis--except Dancer understands that the future is now!” - DR. PETER VINCENT PRY, Executive Director of the EMP Task Force on National and Homeland Security, a Congressional Advisory Board; served in the Congressional EMP Commission, the House Armed Services Committee, and the CIA; author of Blackout Wars

 

“My friend Tom Clancy taught us how fiction can illustrate important truths—if we are willing to pay attention. This book captures the extent of the vulnerability of our nation’s critical electric infrastructure to EMP and cyberattack. Hopefully, as a result, Washington, the states and industry will get on the stick to protect us.” - PETER HUESSY, President, GeoStrategic Analysis; Senior Defense Consultant, Air Force Association; Visiting Professor, US Naval Academy

 

“Not only is Patriarch Run an entertaining read filled with intrigue and human drama, it captures, in realistic detail, the existential threat hanging over our nation. Benjamin Dancer has done his homework. He gets the facts right about the vulnerability of the power grid. That part of the story isn't fiction.” - DREXEL L. SMITH, founder of Drexel Consulting Group, expert in test and evaluation of critical equipment for aerospace, defense, and energy

COMING-OF-AGE

“In Patriarch Run we have a first-rate novel, full of intrigue, excitement and gorgeous prose, as well as a gripping exploration of our gendered culture and the poignant moments and difficult decisions entailed in coming of age. Without being heavy-handed about the right choices, Dancer provokes our much needed questioning of the rules by which we live.” - TERRY A. KUPERS, M.D., Professor at The Wright Institute, author of Revisioning Men’s Lives and Prison Madness

 

"Patriarch Run is a compelling coming-of-age story that explores the universal longing for a father." - DAVE STALLS, co-founder of Street Fraternity, former CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Colorado

 

“This thoughtful thriller invites readers to consider both motherhood and fatherhood on multiple levels—emotional, psychological, even practical. A gripping coming of age story, Patriarch Run demonstrates the real meaning of mature self-acceptance in the face of terror, trauma and abandonment.” - GLORIA DEGAETANO, founder and CEO, Parent Coaching Institute

 

"Patriarch Run is an extraordinary literary achievement packed with intrigue, suspense, and soul. At its heart, this is a story about boys and fatherhood; about coming-of-age and self-acceptance. This is a perfect read for young men who are questioning what type of man they want to be." - CAROLINE HELDMAN, social justice professor, activist, and author

SUSTAINABILITY

“Benjamin Dancer has illustrated that our greatest villain is overpopulation. Can the global community confront this most daunting adversary—too many people on a limited planet?” - PAUL R. EHRLICH, Bing Professor of Population Studies Emeritus; President, Center for Conservation Biology

 

“In Old Testament times, there were only about 30 million people on Earth, yet they were already fighting over wells. With 250 times that number today, as Benjamin Dancer’s thriller notes, we’re literally fighting over everything. Atop that, nature is fighting all of us, for its very life. Overpopulation isn't just one more environmental problem: if there weren't so many of us, there wouldn’t even be environmental problems. Fortunately, this one is solvable, humanely and surprisingly cheaply. I hope that once the blood from this dark spy saga dries, Dancer’s readers are inspired to inquire how. They just might find their hopes rekindled.” - ALAN WEISMAN, author of Countdown and The World Without Us

 

Patriarch Run reminds us that progressive, human-rights enhancing initiatives that help women and men plan their families are the best option for slowing down and eventually halting global population growth. Funding family planning information and services today, along with encouraging small family size decisions, are far preferable to a population-driven apocalypse tomorrow.” - WILLIAM RYERSON, President of Population Media Center, CEO of Population Institute

 

Patriarch Run is the engrossing story of a man driven to save humanity from itself and the horrors of overpopulation he has witnessed. As Jack says to a journalist naïf amidst the starvation in Somalia, 'If you want to help these people, write about the math.' But we are doing precisely the opposite–avoiding the math while focussing our efforts on everything but, much to the detriment of humanity and the planet. May Benjamin Dancer’s dramatic novel help the world overcome its willful blindness to what is becoming more obvious every day: 'It’s the numbers, Stupid!' Numbers which may force us into having to make horrible choices as the world hurtles toward the dystopia that Jack was determined to prevent." - MADELINE WELD, President of Population Institute Canada

 

“Overpopulation is the greatest danger confronting our species and the planet. The multiplier of our most serious global challenges, it is the major obstacle to overcoming them. That Patriarch Run has woven this critically important issue into such an engaging, action-packed and compelling piece of fiction, is to be greatly applauded.” - CLIFFORD GARRARD, Executive Director of Population Institute Canada

 

“A page-turner rooted in a prescient understanding of the unintended consequences of primitive reproductive urges.” - REBECCA D. COSTA, American sociobiologist and author of The Watchman's Rattle

 

Patriarch Run is a compelling piece of fiction which will entertain with action packed drama, while raising awareness of the danger our world faces through over population in a world constrained by limited resources. You will find it hard to put down." - VIRGINIA CARTER, executive board member The Population Media Center

 

Patriarch Run's suspenseful plot not only takes the reader on an intriguing journey through memory, but addresses one of humanity's most serious challenges–human population growth and its impact on our planet.” - TESSA BRIDAL, author of The Tree of Red Stars and River of Painted Birds

 

Patriarch Run engages the epic moral dilemma of overpopulation through a lively and compassionate narrative. The reader is left to judge Jack's choice, and perhaps to reflect that the hand he is dealt might be avoided with a change of heart here in the real world.” - DR. JANE O'SULLIVAN, population and sustainability analyst, executive committee member Sustainable Population Australia