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on 14 September 2004
This has definitely been one of the best books I have read of its kind. Ex-soldiers may have fascinating real-life experiences to draw on when writing fiction but few have the capacity to deliver them in such an engaging way. This is an easy book to read, partly due to the fact that it is well written and partly because it has such a gripping story and fast pace. The author manages to develop unique and strange characters - characters whom you could never imagine meeting in real life, yet makes them seem eerily normal and real (the scary Russian for one). He also does not tend to stereotype his characters of different nationalities and gives them a realism that most people can relate to. The story touches upon issues of terrorism and the Israeli and Palestinian conflict but it manages to remain neutral and did not tend to be biased to any one side (as many other books concerning the conflict tend to be). I have also read this authors previous two books, the non-fictional First Into Action and his first novel The Hostage - am now keenly awaiting the next one.
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on 8 September 2013
Enjoyed this alot. I think this is the 2nd in the Stratton series and although the first was good, this one shows the author really getting into his stride with a smooth plot. Above all the characters are fluidly described and played out and the author is clearly enjoying himself in detailing them and immersing himself in them. Net result is characters that really live off the page. Good fun.
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on 20 October 2007
I am finding the more I read of Duncan Falconer's books this author has substance, his continuity is refreshing. He takes the time to give the reader the background to the characters which makes these books easier to read and more understandable, than some other author's who fail to tell us why there is a conflict between nations or characters. I also enjoy the fact Falconer was willing to go into subjects possibly classed as not the normal with his "Remote Viewer" character Gabriel, he also started to show the humour that the SBS are known for during moments of tension, going as far as to show the poor young's pilots "misplaced" bravado. Duncan Falconer didn't use today's heightened hostile security state as a Political tool which he clearly could have manipulated to tell his story. I think Duncan Falconer is very insightful and un-biased taking the time to give us background on why the terrorist became the way he did, explaining why each character got to the point they were in the plot. Whereas I felt this book wasn't as good as "The Hostage" I still feel it was very much worth a read. The tension just flows from the pages and Duncan Falconer is able to write about subjects he has some knowledge of, Stratton is again put in some amazing situations within the plot. Stratton's character in "The Hostage" was starting to become quite defined, whereas I feel this story was great taking him out of his comfort zone of previous assignments, in fact we start to see he isn't as hard-as-nails and un-emotional as we are led to believe in "The Hostage", it is good to see even a man of this calibre can get lost as to his true Identity. Yet again a gripping read, well written well thought out. I know this review is more on the author than this book, but I don't want to ruin the story for anyone. The outline being a terrorist group hijack a Super tanker murdering the whole crew, one of the employees on the Tankers brother is ex-SPETSNAZ, the Russian's version of Special Forces, the Russian's logic is - if he starts a war by detonating a nuclear device in the "Holy City" they would believe it was done by the West, therefore a Jihad (Holy War) would be started by the East against the West, he believes he would then feel he had gotten his revenge against those who had killed his brother, the Russian goes on to steal a Nuclear device, Stratton in the meantime is now playing body-guard to a bunch of upper-class society types and is bored stupid and is contemplating his future. He is requested to help the Remote Viewer by playing Chauffeur/body-guard and to help him de-code Gabriel's visions (who has managed to tune into the Russians thoughts) Thus starts a chase across countries on the hope of stopping the device being detonated. My advice give this a read as I read "The Operative" immediately after and feel this series of books are well up there with some of the best I have ever read !
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on 9 May 2017
One of the best books I have read in a long time, great detail, very accurate lots of research went into this book, a real page turner loved it.
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on 28 May 2017
good
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on 20 October 2004
Could not put it down. Characters were unique, fascinating, sympathetic and the story booms along at a great pace. Brilliant the way he describes real events, sensitive political and military subjects without taking sides. And almost unnerving how he creates the most dangerous people with attractive and almost forgiving qualities, a technique he used in his last book, The Hostage. Looking forward to the next one. Keep it up, Falconer!
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on 15 June 2011
Had run out of Andy McNab and Chris Ryan to read, so decided to give Mr Falconer a try excellent read, full of technical detail. This was the third title i had tried including The Operative and The Hostage, liked them so much purchased the rest of the series. Highly recommended.
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on 9 April 2008
Duncan Falconer writes so well, and after reading a number of his novels I'm now convinced that 'consistancy' must be his middle name. I thought The Hostage was a throughly enjoyable read from front to back. While writing this review, I would also like to recommend 'The Constantine Legacy' by Andrew Towning.
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on 7 August 2010
I bought this for my husband who doesn't read very often. He finished it in record time and asked me to get him some more by the same author. He said it was easy reading and had a great story and had him hooked from the start.
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on 15 February 2006
Have been reading military fact and fiction for a few years, and have to say, this guy realy puts together a readable believable story, and gets you hooked from page one, not too much military jargon to baffle, but enough to let you know he knows whta hes talking about,
great read and will definatly buy more from this guy
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