Edgar Kellogg has always yearned to be popular. When he's offered the post of foreign correspondent in a Portuguese backwater that has sprouted a homegrown terrorist movement, Edgar recognizes the disappeared larger-than-life reporter he's been sent to replace, Barrington Saddler, as exactly the outsize character he longs to emulate. Infuriatingly, all his fellow journalists cannot stop talking about the beloved 'Bear,' who is no longer lighting up their work lives. Yet all is not as it appears. Os Soldados Ousados de Barba have been blowing up the world for years to win independence for a province so dismal, backward, and windblown that you couldn't give the rat hole away. So why, with Barrington vanished, do terrorist incidents claimed by the 'SOB' suddenly dry up?