Joann Fastoff's New Novel Explores Underground Tobacco Smuggling
Tobacco smuggling became such a problem that in 2013, Rep. Lloyd Doggett (D-Texas) sponsored a bill titled "Smuggled Tobacco Prevention Act of 2013." Author JoAnn Fastoff's fourth book in the Howard Watson mystery series, "The Smoke Ring: (A Howard Watson Intrigue)" (published by AuthorHouse), addresses the real-life problem of tobacco smuggling within the story of a fictional tobacco smuggling ring.
"Cigarettes are legal, yet nicotine is addictive and people have to have it, whatever the cost," Fastoff says. "What we purchase in the U.S. may have negative consequences we're not aware of."
In "The Smoke Ring," Lorna Hunter, armed with a degree in economics, accepts a job in Washington, leaving her drug-dealing father and brother in Los Angeles behind. In an ironic turn of events, Lorna becomes the head of a smoke ring, making money by stealing small quantities of cigarettes in low-tax states and selling them, under market price, in high-tax states.