Being a whistleblower ain’t easy in Cade Haddock Strong’s new novel, “Fare Game”

Fare Game is about Kay Corbett, an airline executive who witnesses unscrupulous practices at Logan Airlines, the fictional airline where she works. Ultimately, she joins forces with Riley Bauer, the brilliant beauty in Finance, to blow the whistle on a massive price fixing scheme at the company. None of the top brass at Logan Airlines wants the secret to get out: they’re swindling passengers through higher fares and defrauding investors. The question is, how far will they go to stop the truth from being exposed?

It’s a bit ironic to have a book about a whistleblower release at a time when the word ‘whistleblower’ dominates the news headlines. Obviously, when I wrote Fare Game, I had no idea a whistleblower would spark an impeachment inquiry against US President Donald Trump. 

The word whistleblower may not be very sexy, but being one takes a lot of courage. When a whistleblower reports fraud, abuse, waste or other illegal activity they’ve witnessed, they’re often harassed, demoted or fired. Some have their reputations dragged through the mud, others are physically threatened. In the worst cases, it’s all of the above and some are even murdered.

Becoming a whistleblower doesn’t sound very enticing, which is a crime in and of itself. Brave whistleblowers have brought a lot of really bad stuff to light, stuff we may never have learned about if it hadn’t been for them.

Kay and Riley, the whistleblowers in Fare Game, face their own kind of hell in their quest to expose the truth. They’re up against powerful men and a corporate culture that’s much more interested in earnings than in ethics. 

Kay and Riley aren’t the only ones to uncover wrongdoing in the aviation industry. Recently, tipsters from inside Boeing contacted the FAA to report technology related issues on the Boeing 737 MAX airplane after it was involved in two fatal crashes in less than six months, killing 346 people.

Two of US history’s most famous whistleblowers were women. Sherron Watkins blew open the Enron accounting hoax and then of course there was Linda Tripp and the whole Monica Lewinsky scandal.

Hollywood has made films about various types of whistleblowers, including:

Silkwood: A woman sounds the alarm about sloppy safety conditions at the plutonium recycling facility where she works. She dies in a car accident on her way to meet a reporter to tell her story. 

The Informant: A biochemist at Archer Daniels Midland wears a wire for the FBI. Things don’t turn out very well for him either. 

Erin Brockovich: Awoman uncovers a massive corporate cover-up of illegal toxic waste disposal and takes a multibillion-dollar company to court.

And, All the President’s Men: two Washington Post journalists dig to uncover the truth about the Watergate scandal.

I’ve read a lot of articles and watched a lot of movies about real-life and fictional whistleblowers. Fare Game is a mash up of their sagas. It’s a story about doing whatever it takes to expose the truth. When the going gets tough, Kay and Riley lean on each other and it turns out, they form an imposing team both in love and in the fight for justice. 

Fare Game is now available for preorder.

Find out more about Cade Haddock Strong here.

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