Top critical review
it is a good and entertaining read for the fans of the genre
on 28 December 2017
This is a book some notches below what one could expect from Tom Clancy. Even then, it is a good and entertaining read for the fans of the genre.
Strong points are the immersiveness of the narrative and the validity of the world conditions at large (i.e. terrorism, assimetric warfare). The plot is good and deserves four stars by itself. The action sequences are well written.
As for the weak points one could start by the political views - which lean on the rightest side of right - the author preaches from time to time. The book comes out as a manifest for torture and executions (yes, the "good guys" do it), the bashing of any form of public healthcare (or "public almost anything"), the discrediting of earth warming, the free carriage of guns etc. All in all, the views of the author will look alien to the average european who reads the book. Still in the weak points, one can also consider some big oversights such as the wrong information about shia and sunni people in Iraq, raw data that forms the basis for one of the subplots of the story. On the subject of oversights one could also consider the poor information the author displays about IT stuff that goes to the point of talking about DVD-ROMs with 60Gb capacity(!!). Another weak point and probably the most important is the fact that the characters are quite unidimensional in their personalities. They are either good, honest and honorable folk or the contrary. That's not how things work in real life. Everyone has flaws and everyone has qualities. The terrorists are all cut from the same evil cardboard and display just a complement of bad traits. They should be much more fleshed out and the reader should be allowed to establish a link with each of them. As they are, they look like some guys with the inteligence of an orange in tactical situations while wearing a blanket of evil wherever they appear in the narrative. As for the "good guys", they are all poster boys of human qualities, from intelligence to intuition, passing by honesty.
To sum it up, this book is an improvement over The Teeth of the Tiger but stands a long way from Tom Clancy's masterpieces of the '80s and '90s. Buy it if you like the genre.