Political thriller explores idea of government gun collection

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The first draft of Essential Liberty, Rob Olive’s political thriller set against a backdrop of gun rights issues, was written in 2000.

But it was the interest in his issue during the 2012 election that made him decide to stop waiting on a publishing house and get the book into print.


“With the election coming up, I thought the timing was good to get it out there in the marketplace,” he said. With the help of an editor and designer, and a public relations person to help him promote the book, it became available in print last July.

But sales really picked up after the political thriller received a glowing review in the May 2013 issue of America’s First Freedom, the “official journal of the NRA.” The reviewer called the book a “fantastic” novel that provides “perhaps the most realistic and chilling picture yet of what firearm confiscation in the United States might look like.”

Olive, who was in town last week visiting his dad and stepmom, Bob and Pat Olive, is an insurance agent by profession. Rob Olive grew up in south Florida and spent four years in the Marine Corp. He said it was the about the only thing he did right at that age, besides choosing his wife, Amy.

He followed her home to Oregon, earned a history degree at Oregon State, and never left. It was after the birth of the couple’s second child that he began Essential Liberty, writing at night after the kids were asleep.

“The premise has not changed from the first draft, but the book has,” he said. “I am passionate about individual liberty. It’s what sets the United States apart from any other country, ever.”

In Essential Liberty, the main character, Don Williams has to decide whether he’ll turn in a friend who refuses to give up his firearms as collections begin by zealous operatives who seek publicity.

“It could happen here,” he said.

The odds of a first novel being published are about one in 5,000, but still, Olive tried.

“The book is edgy,” he said. “And publishing companies are pretty tight.”

So it put it aside. In 2010, a friend read it and told him it could be better. The rework that began then set him on the course that led to self publication.

Olive said he’d love to be spending more time on his next book, but is instead promoting this one. He’s done lots of interviews, but it was the review in NRA publications that boosted sales. He also signed copies at the NRA’s annual meeting.

His next book explores the theme of government dependency and the length to which politicians will go to to create that dependency.

Essential Liberty is available from Olive’s web site, www.roboliveauthor.com, and from amazon.com.