Customer Reviews

170
4.4 out of 5 stars
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 2 September 2014
Jack Higgins is easily my favourite author, ever since reading The Eagle has Landed around ten years ago I have worked my way through his very impressive back catalogue, loving every book he has written. The fact that he is still writing thrillers of this calibre at the age of 85 is nothing short of amazing and something we should all be grateful for. But many things can only be deemed good or bad by comparison, and that is why I can only give this book 4 stars. Compared to other Thriller writers on the market today Higgins still remains at the forefront of the genre, with plots that are current, topical and could easily be set in any of the UK cities. It is this sense of realism that sets Higgins apart from his peers. However, compared to much of his earlier works this latest offering just doesn't stand up as well as I would have hoped. The Dillon series are becoming a little too formulaic for me, with the Prime Ministers secret army now featured in their 20th novel it almost seems as if the last 3 or 4 novels is a rehash of all that has gone before. We await the inevitable meals of Champagne and scrambled eggs, Roper sitting wide awake for the entire night with cigarettes and whiskey, Dillon and Sara taking a risk that will not sit well with Ferguson etc. While all this may be fresh for someone new to Higgins, for the seasoned fan it can become a little too repetitive. My only other issue with this book is that every character when they speak, their sentence is either preceded by the word 'said' or 'demanded', come on Higgins, mix it up a little. On one page I counted the word 'said' 8 times, maybe this is something his editor should have picked up on?

After that you may be thinking that I really didn't care for The Death Trade, but this is very far from the truth. The action was thick and fast and as usual there was a number of unexpected twists. Descriptions of scenes and characters were second to none and it was easy to imagine yourself in the middle of the gunfire. The plot centres around a nuclear scientist who is being held against his will and being made to focus his talents on making a new super bomb. Obviously a man with this talent is sought after the world over, so when he has a chance of escape who will recover him first? The UK, Iran or the dreaded Al Qaeda? In a race against time Dillon and co must travel as far afield as the Saudi Arabian desert whilst attempting to avoid the far reaching hand of the 'Master', an Al Qaeda controller. With Agents seemingly everywhere, this read will make you question even your friendly neighbourhood shopkeepers integrity.

All in all, still a very good book but in my opinion I would love Higgins to write a new story that did not involve the Prime Ministers secret army. He seems to have settled himself into a comfort zone (and at his age I can't really blame him) and is content to stay there. Even the ages of the main characters needs looking at, Dillon is now 62 and Ferguson must be knocking on 90... If Higgins is going to keep the series running, then how about allowing the next novel to just feature Sean Dillon, after all he was the main protagonist that attracted so many readers to Higgins way back in 1992 (Eye of the Storm). Unfortunately he seems to be given less and less of the limelight with each passing novel. I miss his Irish wit and deadly comments that were so much a part of the earlier works. In comparison to him many of the new additions just seem wooden (Gideon, Roper, Holley etc)

Maybe not the best place to start as an introduction to Higgins, my own favourite novel is A Prayer for the Dying, but not only a book for the completist either. Give it a try, you'll be glad you did.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on 10 June 2014
This book is just a rehash of previous Dillon novels. It is high time Mr Higgins gave up on the PM's Private Army. Anyone familiar with Dillon and his crew will have read basically the same tale in at least a dozen previous Dillon stories. In the past Jack Higgins has written some great stories sadly The Death Trade is not one of them.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 25 November 2014
I know books tend to deteriorate as a series goes on but this is beyond that - it really was terrible - didnt even make sense half the time - stick to the earlier Sean Dillons if your looking for something to read - time to bring this series to a close Mr Higgins!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
on 1 July 2015
There’s no denying that Higgins has written some classics over the years, which I have enjoyed reading immensely, but this certainly isn’t one of them. The storyline itself is compelling and there are some interesting characters, including the usual suspects of Dillon & Ferguson, but unfortunately the writing is lazy and downright clumsy in places, especially when it comes to dialogue, or introducing the speaker.

This is a particularly clumsy example from pg29 but there are far too many ‘he said’/’she said’ introductions to the speaker throughout the book;
‘That was Ferguson, and Dillon said, “There might be an opportunity…”’

People ‘yawn hugely’, rather than just yawn, and generally there is far too much ‘tell’ of their personalities and emotions, instead of showing us what they are thinking/feeling through their actions or speech. The dialogue itself is outdated and stumbles at times, as is the cold war espionage world of sing-alongs that Ferguson and Dillon still live in despite the modern setting.

I lost count of the number of times it was reiterated what a hero and action-girl Sara Gideon by various other characters, even after she has just stabbed an assailant in the leg to save Dillon it is mentioned twice, which as a reader I found insulting.

With better editing this could be a good read, but I found that the repetition, clichéd characterisation, and hammering home of facts became annoying and made it mediocre.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 17 September 2014
there is a distinct falling off of Mr Higgins' Dillon stories, but perhaps this is due to the changes in the world political scene over the past few years. P.S. General Ferguson must be well past his retirement date ! I have read all the Sean Dillon stories over the years and they were great fun but perhaps every hero hs his/her day and it is so with Sean Dillon
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 31 January 2015
An interesting setting and idea but I felt The Death Trade, had an overload of characters. This is the first Jack Higgins' novel I have read so perhaps if I'd read the previous books in the series I would have had more connection to the characters.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 31 January 2015
Why is it always bloody raining in just about every book.please. try a different approach. I have read jst about everything wrote by Jack But found this book very predictable and not up to the usual suspense but still enjoyable..
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 17 February 2015
Ferguson's army has run its course. It is by now so predictable and corny. Dillon's piano and Gideon's singing - so corny!!! Have read all the Dillon books and each one gets less enjoyable and more corny.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 11 August 2014
If I could give this no stars I would. This book is simply riseable. From memory I have only read one other JH book - "The Eagle has Landed" and at the time I remember it being a brilliant, taught, believable and well plotted book, with interesting well rounded characters. This Higgins is the complete opposite and one would almost believe it was written by a ghost writer, if not perhaps it is time for the 85 year old Mr Patterson to put his pen away and enjoy the fruits of his labours of the past 60 years.

These type of thrillers don't necessarily need to be based on truth, they just have to be believeable or at least 90% believeable as TEHL was. At the end of reading it one really beleived that Higgins had come across some secret documenting about a plot to kidnap Churchill and turned it into a book. The Death Trade (DT), where do I start? The dialog is appalling, conference calls on Skype from aeroplanes, leaden plot, alchol consumption to knockout an elephant, pilots drunk on vodka who then fly within 10 minutes, special phones called codexes, note books with codes, Iran army officers with Irish mothers and recently inherited estates in Ireland (all these might be true but JH does not make you believe it so).

This book is aweful please don't buy it and I certainly won't be buying another Jack Higgins.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 21 June 2014
Sorry Jack but you just went through the motions with this.
I am a huge Jack Higgins / Sean Dillon fan, but the story line is non-existent.
Not your best.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
     
 
Customers who viewed this item also viewed


 
     

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.