This may be a very good book in the genre (of which I'm not a regular listener), but I found the plot, prose and character development simplistic at best. Overall, I was entertained (if unimpressed) and I do not regret using a credit on the purchase. The narrator was very good.
Tucked away in the beautiful mountains of New Mexico.
This book was acceptable, but nothing to rave about. It had the typical action of the other Mitch Rapp books, and the forced "love interest" of other Mitch Rapp books. It got me down the road and didn't put me to sleep, but certainly nothing to get worked up over.
Love internet shopping, from audio books to nail polish to silk scarves. Audible & Amazon are my go to places.
I read this when it was first published and, for the most part, followed the Mitch Rapp story arc thru the years. However, it hasn't aged well at all .
The positive aspect is that Geo. Guidall can read the Yellow Pages and make it thrilling. Since I've been listening to the Longmire series it was easy for me to get confused with Henry Standing Bear and Mitch Rapp. Great job Mr Guidall-on both series.
As for the intro to the series -well, it was lacking in 2013 what it might have had when published. If you're new to the series, I understand the need to listen to the backstory...I'm sure I'm not the only person who picked up one of the middle of the series books on special from Audible. Just don't expect too much from Vince Flynns Mitch Rapp at 22.
Sorry. It just didnt age well.
While better than the last two Rapp novels, this 'origin issue' could have been a lot better. It seems like Flynn has run out of ideas for Rapp and is just going through the numbers now with this series. This truly could have been much better in the character development behind the American Assassin. Instead, we get a Superman story. For example, when Rapp, immediately after being recruited by Kennedy arrives at a spy training camp in Virginia, there is nothing for him to learn. Rapp, after having done nothing more than 'taken a few months of courses at a strip mall dojo' manages to immediately and embarrassingly beat his instructor in hand to hand combat, a man who's been training Special Forces soldiers day in and out for years who also has decades of fighting experience. The rest of the time at Spy camp is spent exercising. We don't get one shred of insight as to how Rapp learns his spycraft or his great 'dirty tricks' he uses on the terrorists in the earlier novels. It only takes about 5 minutes on the gun range for the 'never been taught to shoot' Rapp to become an expert and the best shot in the service. The latter portion of the novel is Rapp's first mission in Beirut and you can already see the ending many chapters before it arrives. There just wasn't much suspense or surprises that could have been done with a little more effort from Vince Flynn. And it's a shame because I own nearly all of his books except for the last few and I know he has the talent in him.
I have about 3 hours left of this saga, but I won't finish it. I don't suppose they'll return the credit. My first difficulty was with the narrator. I notice that great narrators, like Roger Allam, Dick Hill, or Len Cariou seem to blend right into and add richness to the story. George Guidall does not. He sounds like he is a scoutmaster reading a Hardy Boys story to Boy Scouts on a camping trip, or someone hired to do an aspirin commercial. There is something about his style that is doesn't appeal to me. Part of that though is the story itself. This is just prosaic and contrived. Lots of little asides in the storyline to create an epic context (the girl friend was on the Lockerbie flight; Mitch was a world class lacrosse player, etc.) These are the kinds of details found in any thriller, but they came across more artificially here than I see in other thrillers, sort of as devices used to get you to believe that this is an intense and immersing storyline. It has not worked for me, so I'll move on.
BTW, to his credit, the narrator does a great Stan Hurley in the story, in my opinion. (No wait, it's not my opinion. Mitch Rapp is standing over me with a gun making me share someone else's opinion!) Seriously, the narrator has a fine voice and is a great Hurley. But for the rest of the book, it does not work.
I know this is a highly rated story - that is why I got it. So, my view certainly is not the one shared by most reviewers. I had just finished two epics - Follet's the Fall of Giants and Verghese's Cutting for Stone - the former was superb and vintage Follet, the latter one of those that most of its listeners will rank in the top five of any audible they have heard, and it was for me. I thought a relatively shorter thriller, of which I have read many, would be a nice change of pace. I picked the wrong one.
Vince Flynn’s new best seller, “American Assassin,” is a very poor book. Its cloying narration, while competent, didn’t help matters. The first 25% of the book is an unbelievable and stupid description of efforts to train CIA agents. It is, frankly, dispiriting that any author would think his or her readers so gullible as to believe that what is described here could actually exist, or be successful. It takes navy seals training to a new level and introduces Stan Hurley, the lead CIA trainer, who behaves so stupidly that he could not exist in any organization for more than a few hours. His relationship to other characters in the CIA is juvenile. After the story moves to the Middle East and Europe, the plot does pick up, but it’s so routine and hackneyed, that it’s only mildly interesting. The main event of the novel, the breaking into of a computer network, probably an impossibility, is never explained; the author just mentions that the CIA was able to do it. Contrast this with the meticulous and exciting detailing of a similar intelligence operation in “The Rembrandt Affair” by Daniel Silva. Details are not important to Flynn as, at one point, he places Beirut on the ocean. His cartoonish characters would probably not know the difference. I don’t know if I was more annoyed at the author for writing this mediocrity, or at my fellow reviewers who raved about the book, or at myself for actually reading the entire book. We’re all losers as far as I’m concerned.
If you are fan of Vince Flynns' avenger, Mitch Rapp, you won't want to miss this story. It tells of the origin of Mitch Rapp, the trained assassin. the story also introduces many of the characters that have appeared in his other books, including Irrene Kenney, Thomas Stansfield and Stan Hurely. It starts when a young Irene Kennedy recruits a a recent college graduate, Mitch Rapp for a 'dark ops' group. Most of the story deals with Rapp's training at the hands of Stan Hurley. Although their relationship is the often chronicled conflicts between the hardened drill instructor knocking heads with a young trainee, Flynn's description is anything but boring. After training, the story continues with the first mission that Rapp is sent on...he and Hurley are sent to kill enemies of the United States. As the mission is not the main point of the book, there are much fewer details, planning and complications than usually found in a Mitch Rapp story - but the writing is exciting nonetheless.
If you have not previously read a Mitch Rapp story, I suspect that you will be entertained by the story but the themes will be much clearer with knowledge of previous stories...perhaps this story will convince new readers to go back and read the other Rapp stories.
Retired Ex-Pat living Near San Jose, Costa Rica.
Book: A prequel and it works! Flynn writes a fine tight action novel of how how our favorite terrorist killer (Rapp) gets started and ties up a few stray ends covering various goodies he has thrown to us in other books. Excellent read all they way through... though I would have liked to have him develop and string us out a bit more during the final showdown with the baddies. He ended it a bit too quick. Maybe deadline? Grade A- because he rushed the finish
Reader: Guidall? Always solid. I like the way he speeds up when the action is hot. Exactly what I do when really "reading" a book. Not perfect with all the voices, but still a fine job. Grade B
Watch out Scott Harvath, Jack Ryan, etc. Mitch Rapp is the new super hero. Flynn does great job on this book. This is the first audio book that I had to listen to end-to-end where most I just listen to in my commute to work. If you love spy thrillers where the good guy kills a lot of terrorists, this book is for you.