The life of a police officer or member of the armed forces is not for the faint of heart, but for anyone who’s ever wondered what it’s like a new book from Ahwatukee Foothills resident Steven Mead gives a little perspective.

Mead has a military background and has served on a state police force and as a Phoenix police officer for the last 20 years. He currently works as a canine officer for the Phoenix Police Department.

In the last five years he’s developed a passion for writing that led to the creation of “Blood Border,” a fictional tale about two Phoenix police officers who uncover a terrorism plot and must race against time and politics to stop it from going off. The book is fiction, but it’s based on events that have happened in the past and tells the story of small and large acts of heroism that officers do each day to help keep people safe.

“I’ve had the front-row seat to the greatest show on earth — the human race,” Mead said. “Unfortunately, I see a lot of the negative aspects of that but every once in a while I get to see the positive that comes through. There’s nothing else like it. I have these experiences I can put on paper more so than some Hollywood writer. I have the personal experience.”

Mead said he’s never been part of a joint task force investigation on terrorism like the one depicted in the book, but he has been on the receiving end of a gun battle and in his unique role working with a canine he’s often on the front lines. His unit is constantly asked to imagine all scenarios so their response is planned out. Writing this book has been a way for him to get all those scenarios on paper and honor those he serves with.

“It was good to write that down and talk about things like that,” he said. “It helps with the stresses of being an officer and a canine officer with the department.”

The book does contain some graphic scenes, Mead warns. Some readers have told him they found it too intense to read before bed, while others say it made them want to go join the fight. Mead’s wife, Julie, said she found it inspiring.

“So many characters in the book do what would be seemingly insignificant things but they all add up to a greater purpose that each person fills in their role, which is really awesome,” she said. “I think it will be inspiring to other readers in a sense that we go through the mundane thinking what difference does this make, but all the parts come together for a whole.”

The book was published by Dorrance Publishing Co. in Pittsburgh. It’s available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Dorrance Publishing’s website, www.dorrancebookstore.com.

Mead is already working on his second novel. It won’t be a sequel to “Blood Border,” but will contain some of the same characters.

• Contact writer: 480-898-7914 or ahurtado@ahwatukee.com.

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