Quito, Ecuador.

In this obscure Andean capital, ladled along the ledge of a volcano, an eruption is taking place. After centuries of oppression, the workers are on strike against their banana plantation masters. If Ecuador, the largest banana exporter in the world and the bargain basement of the industry, raises its prices, so will the others.

Remarkably, Jay Streets, American pro-football star, is called on to arbitrate and set a final wage for the workers. Having no interest in the matter, he is expected to be impartial The U.S. government, however, with U.S. consumers in mind, would rather that Streets be partial.It has ordered the embassy's CIA chief to ensure it.

Set against the emerald majesty of the Andes, City on the Ledge witnesses the machinations of politicians, spies, diplomats and lovers as they strive to pull off a revolution - or kill it before it can bloom.

"Kraske's command of plot, dialog and character is staggering. Whatever he puts his pen to , whether essay or fiction, makes for a great read."

         ~  ColdType,


"City on the Ledge by Philip Kraske is the story of Jay Streets, former American pro football star and newly appointed arbiter to the new wage system for the banana plantation workers. The reason being, the workers are on strike for more money. The plantation owners want to keep wages low to keep the price of bananas down. In a world full of corrupt politicians, I found this book to be very relevant to the modern world. I felt that the author included just the right amount of politics and corruption to keep the story moving and hold my interest. I found Jay's character to draw me in the most. The way he changed as the story continued made me want to see only good things for him. Paul Klippen was another one of the characters who I enjoyed in the book. He has a huge role in how the story turns out and plays his part in trying to keep the countries from killing each other. (Figuratively speaking of course)

I enjoyed the book. it's not something that I would normally read but the characters drew me in and kept me coming back for more. I really enjoyed how descriptive the author was as well. I've never been to, or even seen pictures of Ecuador, but after getting a good mental image from the authors writing I feel like I've been there many times. I definitely recommend this book and look forward to reading more from Mr. Kraske."

                        ~  hardymeagan,

                        Amazon review

"This is the second Philip Kraske book I've read, and it's amazing how he can tell a completely different story and make it just as interesting. I read the whole thing in two shots and finished at two in the morning. I think his fun characters really make the difference.

City on the Ledge deals with the espionage and influence-peddling around a workers general strike in Ecuador. The characters are great. Jay Streets, who used to be a star receiver in the NFL, through a complete misunderstanding gets the job of arbiter to set a new wage system for the workers. Paul Klippen is a nice-guy State Department diplomat whose really the key to the story it turns out. He does a kind of diplomatic rope-a-dope, and it's really slick, and at the end I think he's just trying to keep different countries from each other's throats.

And there's a lot of local description of Ecuador: corrupt politicians, a hilarious beauty pageant, awesome scenery in the Andes, and I never really understood low-education country people till I read this book. Awesome. I just hope he's got a new book out by the time I finish the other two."

         ~  JJMesado

              Amazon review


Philip Kraske

Philip Kraske was born in Detroit, Michigan, in 1959 and grew up in Stillwater, Minnesota, just south of the villages that inspired Garrison Keillor's Lake Wobegon.


Kraske studied French, Spanish and Portuguese and received a degree in International Relations from the University of Minnesota. He has lived and worked in Quito, Ecuador, and travelled throughout South America and western Europe. He is currently at work on a novel set in Quito, untrod ground for English-language writers. He also teaches English and translates works by Spanish authors.

As in City on the Ledge, the growing divorce between Americans and their government is a persistent theme in Kraske's first two political novels, Mockery and Flight in February. But beyond the themes these are thrillers packed with humor, terrific dialogue and wonderful characters.

CITY ON THE LEDGE is now available in hardcopy at Amazon.com, at BarnesandNoble.com and other on-line retailers, directly from the Encompass website at words@encompasseditions.com, or by order from your favorite bookstore.

CITY ON THE LEDGE will be available for Kindle and other portable digital readers from Amazon.com.

For the visually discriminating, the fully designed edition of CITY ON THE LEDGE, including covers, is available in glorious full-colour PDF. Just click on the Encompass Digital Book logo below to go to PayPal and forward $3.99 to words@encompasseditions.com. On your PayPal form, indicate which title you're ordering  and your digital copy will be on the way!

Encompass Editions: Mockery, the thriller, now in PDF



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