Top positive review
28 people found this helpful
Exciting and satisfying
on 12 December 2001
Thank God for Separation of Power. Having read Vince Flynn's previous Mitch Rapp thriller 'The Third Option' I was left with mixed emotion towards this obviously talented writer.
On the one hand I appreciated his spare, concise style. Compared to writers like Tom Clancy and Dale Brown, Flynn avoids getting sucked into long descriptive passages detailing the latest in military technology that can slow down the story or detract from the action. As a result his thrillers are truly thrilling, moving along at a rapid pace that barely lets up from the word go.
Unfortunately, with The Third Option he managed to annoy the hell out of this reader by giving me half a book. Or at least that is how it felt. All the requisite parts were present. There was action, intrigue and machiavellian plotting aplenty. What it lacked however, was an ending... To my mind the whole thing just felt unfinished.
With Separation of Power Flynn is presenting less a sequel to his last novel, than the second half of the same book. Mitch Rapp, Eilleen Kennedy, Senator Clarke and Donatella all return from The Third Option, picking up pretty much where the last book left off and dealing with very much the same plot strands. Rapp is still investigating the death of Peter Cameron, the former CIA officer and Clarke is still there behind the scenes, pulling strings. In other words, rather than setting up an entirely new story, with new supporting characters and new motivations for the central ones, Separation of Power is really about tying up all the loose threads left dangling at the end of The Third Option. As a result the plot regarding Iraqi nuclear warheads, which would seem to be the core of book at first glance, is relegated to a sideshow that is wrapped up in short order and with little or no trouble to allow events back in Washington to resume centre stage. It makes for a somewhat disjointed narrative structure throughout the book.
Of course for all that, I still enjoyed it, hence the four stars. Having come across Mitch Rapp in Transfer of Power, I find him a satisfying hero. Brave and skilled as he is, the conflicts between the work he does and the life he wants to make with Anna Reilly lend a solid human dimension to his character that makes him an interesting and emotionally engaging lead. Backed up by solid, well written action, interesting supporting characters and a good understanding by Flynn of the political complexities of Washington, Separation of Power, when combined with The Third Option is a good thriller that keeps the reader engaged.
All I hope is that next time we have the opportunity to spend time with Mitch Rapp et al, we are allowed to see the entire adventure through is one sitting.