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Close Quarters: A spy thriller set in Washington DC and Ukraine (A Marc Portman Thriller) Hardcover – 1 Aug 2015

3.7 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Severn House Publishers; First World Publication ed. edition (1 Aug. 2015)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0727885049
  • ISBN-13: 978-0727885043
  • Product Dimensions: 14.5 x 2.5 x 21.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,016,985 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

About the Author

Adrian Magson is the author of 20 crime and spy thrillers. His series protagonists include Gavin & Palmer, Harry Tate, Marc Portman, Insp Lucas Rocco and Gonzales & Vaslik. He is also the author of 'Write On!' a writer's help book.

Customer Reviews

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
'Close Quarters' is the second Marc Portman thriller. I haven't read ' The Watchman', the first book featuring this character but there is enough background in this story to make it enjoyable as a standalone read.

The setting and political climate is contemporary and relevant. Told from Marc Portman's point of view, in a PI style, Marc Portman is likeable and realistic. Unlike many novels of its ilk, 'Close Quarters' is not overly graphic in terms of violence. The story still portrays the menace and violence of the circumstances Portman experiences, which evidences quality writing.

The political conspiracy theme in the novel is not new but Portman's role as a close protection expert, rather than a member of the special services, offers enough original insight to make it worth reading. The supporting characters and antagonists are complex characters and allow the reader glimpses into the conspiracy and the danger Portman faces, whilst he remains in ignorance, creating powerful dramatic irony.

This is an easy to read, well paced story with strong characters. I am intrigued enough to read more of this author's stories.
I received a copy of this book from Severn House Publishers via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
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By Nick Brett TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 29 May 2015
Format: Hardcover
A very topical thriller, but also a nod back to the old cold war type thrillers.

In the second novel to feature “The Watchman” the hero of the title is an off the books operator sent into places to oversee operations and to step in if things go awry. In this, he is sent into the chaos of the Ukraine to rescue an unofficial envoy but things do go wrong and a frantic run for the border ensues. The bad guys here are not just in the Ukraine, back in the US the CIA support operation is being jeopardised from within.

This is fast moving and very enjoyable, a good balance of political intrigue and action. I liked the characters, including the young CIA trainee and it certainly had a very topical aspect. Maybe the US political side is something we have seen before, but that is easy to forgive in a very entertaining package. Definitely one series I shall be watching and having missed the first book I shall be making a point of catching up on.
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Format: Hardcover
Close Quarters is an intricate, fast paced, topical thriller set in Washington and the Ukraine, which keeps the reader on his/her toes throughout.

Marc Portman is an experienced protection specialist who is used to finding himself in extremely volatile situations. However this could be his toughest task yet!

The CIA hire Portman on a hazardous mission, code name "Watchman" to get a top U.S. State Department Official safety out of the Ukraine. He gets involved in numerous hostilities, whereby he finds himself up against the Russians, Ukrainians and professional snipers. There are also leaks from the CIA itself, but who could it be?

I have given this book three stars, because although the plot is enjoyable, the political situation makes it difficult sometimes to differentiate between all the protagonists.—Galadriel

Rating: Three Stars.

bestsellingcrimethrillers.com was provided with a copy for review.
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Format: Hardcover
This is only the second Adrian Magson novel I’ve read. Along time ago I read his novel Red Station, the first of his Harry Tate series, but wasn’t massively impressed. It wasn’t that it was a bad novel, just a little slow for a spy thriller. Recently NetGalley hosted Close Quarters, the second in his Marc Portman series, and I opted to give it ago. I have to say that I’m glad that I did.

Close Quarters is incredibly current, set in the on-going conflict between Russian separatists and the Ukrainian Government. The story revolves around Marc Portman, an ex-special forces contractor who specialises in protecting people from afar, being brought in by the CIA to rescue a State Department diplomat who’s under ‘house arrest’ in a hotel in eastern Ukraine. Needles to say, if it were that easy this would be a very short novel indeed. Instead, for reasons I won’t share for risk of divulging spoilers, the plan goes seriously awry.

I do have a couple of issues but they all centre on the same thing. Throughout the book our hero runs into Spetsnaz troops, basically Russia’s equivalent to the SAS. Yet he never seems to have any trouble dispatching them. In one scene, after the armoured truck the Spetsnaz are in crashes into a lake, he drags two of them out and ties them together by their thumbs. And that’s it, job done! I’m sorry; these are either elite special forces or they aren’t. Similarly, after subduing a female sniper (again hardened ex-army) she sits meekly by while he shoots her colleague in a gunfight. She doesn’t try to escape or overpower him when his back is turned or anything.

But these are minor issues in an otherwise good, solid, and gripping thriller. Close Quarters is an action packed thrill of a ride.
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