The CIA suspects the elusive Pulog, a rebel leader with communist ties. Ben, a young operative based in Washington, is sent to find him. The two have crossed paths before, as students at an elite Jesuit college in Manila.

A decade later,
the choices they made during World War II,
their spiritual ties to the same Catholic priest, and
the attraction they share to a beautiful Eurasian woman,
complicate the search for justice and raise issues that reverberate today.

Praise for Under a Tropical Sun

I couldn't put it down...

This gripping debut novel brings to life a little-known chapter in the history of the Philippines: the communist uprising of the 1950’s. Through the characters of two childhood friends—one now a rebel communist leader, the other a CIA operative—Pasky Pascual gives us a sweeping, panoramic story that brings to life the clash between two visions of history. It is a story of friendship, betrayal—and a surprising meditation on the nature of faith. I couldn’t put it down.

A.X. Ahmad, author of “The Caretaker”

...fabulous novel...

Who really knows what causes the butterfly effects turning peace to war, causing hundreds, even thousands, to die? Is it the interests of countries, or does it turn on the narrow interests of individuals? It is this latter perspective that is brought into sharp relief in the fabulous novel, Under a Tropical Sun, a historical novel of friendship and betrayal, nationalism, freedom and oppression by Pasky Pascual…

For the many Americans who witnessed a rogue President invade and destroy the wrong country in answer to 9/11, it is a timely piece reminding us of similar diplomatic and military disasters in the past. The novel is about the little studied American military involvement in the war against the Huks in the Philippines. Pascual, born in the Philippines, is well informed about the history and the culture of the country. The book sucks the reader into the detailed real costs of our oft-misaligned foreign policy, with interesting views of how the political and personal pressures change the course of history.

Joe A. Oppenheimer, Professor Emeritus
Department of Government and Politics, University of Maryland

...magisterial scope and spiritual insights of a Graham Greene novel...

Under a Tropical Sun is a compelling story of a gifted boy who is weaned from the idealism of his youth and who is eventually thrust into the cruel realities of war and injustice. Framed in the context of the U.S. occupation of the Philippines, the book possesses the magisterial scope and spiritual insights of a Graham Greene novel. The conflict within Pulog, its main protagonist, reflects a deeply personal struggle: how belief can sometimes be at odds with faith, and how orthodoxy can at times perpetuate oppression and injustice. Pulog’s early Jesuit education does not necessarily bring him to a status of social elevation, but rather incarnation, by choice, with those who are marginalized and who live in the shadows. The author’s storytelling is infused with suspense, introspection, vivid settings, and riveting dialogue.

Joel Navarro, Composer and Professor of Music, Calvin College


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