FATAL DOMAIN: Steven James Offers Teaser Ahead of the Release of His Second Travis Brock Thriller

On April 9th, 2024, Department of Defense redactor Travis Brock returns to bookstores in Fatal Domain, a brand new novel from bestselling author Steven James.

Brock, a fascinating character who previously used his eidetic memory to sort through a mental catalog of clues in order to stop a terrorist attack, first appeared in James’ 2023 thriller Broker of Lies. Vulnerable but headstrong and determined, Travis is a unique and relatable hero. As the first book opens, readers must watch helplessly as Travis’ home goes up in flames. Ultimately, he’s able to escape as the house burns down around him, but tragically, he isn’t able to save his wife, who dies. From there, it’s revealed that the fire was no accident, which sets Travis on a quest to find whoever sparked the inferno. Through it all, James weaves an emotional tale full of action and suspense, with some well-times twists thrown in along the way. Now, Travis is returning for another adventure, one that will see him deal with a “grim chapter from his past” that won’t seem to end, and this time, the stakes are even higher than before. 

“In a certain way, Fatal Domain stands out from my other novels,” said James in an exclusive statement to The Real Book Spy. “It really surprised me when I was writing it. The journey that the protagonist, Travis Brock, took was not something I ever anticipated and he faced questions I’ve asked myself—and he made some bold choices I’m not sure I’d be ready to make.

“This story went into unexpected directions, weaving together some of the things I like most about espionage novels—action, intrigue, betrayals, and unusual alliances, all while asking questions that matter.”

As for what those questions are, and how they’re ultimately answered, you’ll just have to read Fatal Domain to find out.

Check out the official cover art and plot details below.


When the past scratches its way into the present, it can leave deep scars.

A series of cryptic clues leads Department of Defense redactor Travis Brock to suspect that a grim chapter from his past is not yet over. With the help of his eidetic memory and his newly formed team, he must unearth the truth and stop a terrorist group from stealing one of the military’s most highly guarded technological breakthroughs. With it, the group plans to commit a daring act of espionage that could upend the work of one of the world’s largest pharmaceutical firms and impact millions of people worldwide.

In a high-stakes story of action and intrigue that reaches from a refugee settlement in Uganda to the shores of the Potomac in Washington, DC, shattering secrets from the past will be revealed, loyalties tested, and intimate betrayals brought to light as Brock is forced to decide how to forgive what he cannot forget.

From a novelist that Publishers Weekly has called a “master storyteller” comes an intricate and taut thriller that will have you guessing until the final page.


A popular keynote speaker and in-demand storyteller, Steven James is equipped with a unique master’s degree in storytelling and has taught writing and storytelling on five continents, speaking more than 2000 times at events spanning the globe. He is also the critically acclaimed author of eighteen novels, including the bestselling Bowers Files suspense series. His sci-fi novel, SYNAPSE, a near-future thriller, received starred reviews from both Publishers Weekly and Library Journal and was a finalist for an International Book Award. When Steven isn’t writing or speaking, you’ll find him playing basketball or hiking near his home in the Appalachian Highlands of eastern Tennessee. If you love stories and storytelling, check out his podcast, The Story Blender, on which Steven has interviewed nearly 200 of the world’s top writers and storytellers.

Readers looking to pre-order Fatal Domain ahead of its April release can now do so here or anywhere else books are sold.




Praised as “One of the hardest working, most thoughtful, and fairest reviewers out there” by New York Times bestselling author Lisa Scottoline, Ryan Steck has “quickly established himself as the authority on mysteries and thrillers” (Author A.J. Tata). Steck also works full-time as a freelance editor and is building a growing community on Twitch. His debut thriller, FIELDS OF FIRE, which #1 New York Times bestselling author Jack Carr says “will leave you speechless and begging for more,” is now available. His second novel, LETHAL RANGE, is also in bookstores, and his third book, OUT FOR BLOOD, comes out on June 4th. For more information, be sure to follow him on Twitter and Facebook. To interact with other readers and talk about your favorite books and authors, join The Real Book Spy’s Discord server.


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