After a year-long tour in Afghanistan, Mystery Readers Journal contributor and Boston College Professor Andrew McAleer is returning to his job at Boston College this spring to teach crime fiction. McAleer, a sergeant with in the U.S. Army, served with the 126th Military History Detachment (MHD) as a Combat Historian in Regional Command East in Afghanistan, extending from the Bamyan Province in the west to the Pakistan border in the east. MHDs consist of three soldiers – one field-grade officer and two noncommissioned officers. In total there are twenty-seven MHDs in the U.S. Army. When fully staffed, there are fewer than 100 Combat Historians available to preserve the Army’s history. McAleer was one of three Army historians in the Afghanistan theater.
“Military History Detachments are unique,” McAleer states. “Combat Historians collect and archive historical documents, photographs, artifacts, and conduct interviews with front-line soldiers in order to preserve their sacrifices and contributions.” As a result McAleer’s missions often brought him to remote combat outposts.
McAleer is back at his full-time job as a prosecutor for the Massachusetts Department of Correction and back publishing. “I really missed mystery writing while deployed,” McAleer said, “but this deployment reminded me how indebted we are to literary societies like Mystery Readers Journal. It's an honor to appear in Legal Mysteries IIalong greats like Margaret McLean and Jeffrey Marks. A fantastic volume.”
Prior to deployment, McAleer’s fourth novel and suspense thriller Fatal Deeds featuring P.I. Gus Churchill, hit the shelves with great success. McAleer brought his experience as a prosecutor to capture the P.I. world within Boston’s 617 area code. His knack for creating quirky characters and snappy dialogue has received praise from literary luminaries like Doris Kearns Goodwin, Robert B. Parker, and Robin Moore.