Hugh Ashton's Books Balance of Powers

The American Dream ain’t what it used to be, as Major Henry Gillette Powers, USMC, discovers on his return from Afghanistan.

His sister and her family have disappeared, and their home has been repossessed, along with half the houses in the neighborhood. With the help of Jeanine, who has also lost her home, he learns fast what’s going on.

What he unearths about the mortgage business awakens long-buried sides of his character, and corpses start to drop in his wake as he travels from Ohio to New York.

Meanwhile on Wall Street, Kendra Hampton, financial journalist, discovers that mortgage traders are dying in very messy ways.

Hampton and Powers are now on a collision course as events race towards a climax that could mean the death of dozens.

This book also includes a few pages from Beverly Thomas, who has worked extensively with the victims of foreclosures and of predatory lenders, with a list of dos and don’ts, and contact details to assist those who may find themselves in a similar situation to that described in this novel.

Major Henry Powers, USMC Afghanistan vet, meets Jeanine. Like Henry's sister, Jeanine has lost her house to the system that sold her a crooked mortgage. Together, the pair travel in search of the banksters, and a trail of corpses shows where they've been. Meanwhile, in NYC, reporter Kendra Hampton discovers that Henry is out for blood at the highest level. Can she stop him in time? Balance of Powers explores the depths of revenge, and the healing power of love, as Henry races to outrun the law, righting the wrongs done in the name of greed.


There is sufficient evidence that the banks colluded in the first half 2000s to sell fraudulent products - subprime and no-doc home loans - and to get very rich out of it at the expense of the victims who were left homeless and broke.

But if I, a civilian living on the other side of the world, am angry about what happened some years ago and who was never personally touched by it, how much angrier would a trained killer be, whose sister lost her life as a result of this fraud?

Yes, this novel was written with a purpose, and with a sense of outrage. But I also think it has entertainment value. Even though his actions put him on the wrong side of the law, Henry Powers always believes he is acting for the best – he is a man who believes in justice, and his country, and is horrified by what has happened in his time away. There is violence and “bad” language in this book, but there is romance, there is some redemption, and even a little humor here and there.

As a writer, I scared myself writing this book - it explored depths I didn’t even know existed, and they weren’t pleasant. But I am proud of the characterization that I achieved, and of the plot that evolved out of my basic anger at the institutions that perpetrated the crimes. So, while the book definitely has a message, it’s also entertainment - and I think it succeeds on that level, whether or not you agree with the basic premises.

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Here are the first three chapters of Balance of Powers (PDF format). Available in paperback and ebook editions.

NOTE! The book contains "adult" language and some sexuality. If that kind of thing offends you, read no further.

 Amazon has paperback & Kindle on sale now – click here!