I finished this book about a week ago and have been trying to figure out how to put my reaction to it in words. Like others I was disappointed that the story wasn't wrapped up, but it is more than that. I just don’t feel satisfied with this book. I don’t want to give anything away, but it seems Wells’ development, his skills, maturity is frozen some place in the past. In many series as the character ages they become less impulsive, more wise, depend less on physical strength and speed and more on cunning, but not so here. Night Ranger showed some maturing of Wells and I liked where the character was going, but not so with The Counterfeit Agent. Plus, as another reviewer said Wells’ personal relationship with Ann doesn't make sense. Within 24 hours of meeting him in an earlier novel, he was off saving the world. Why after multiple years in the relationship is she surprised to see he is still interested in the same work? Her reasoning almost seems like a slap in the face for all the people in the military who also go off to defend the country leaving spouses and kids behind. If you like the John Wells series then by all means get this but don’t expect it to be as good as some of the previous novels nor to be as satisfied.
As many have said the narration isn't the best but not bad enough not to listen. The narrator didn't handle dialog well; ok he sucked at dialog sections, but luckily there isn't much back and forth dialog. While this isn't the strongest book it is a good start and I can see potential. I have listened to the second in the series and the author has tightened up his writing and there is a different narrator. While you don't need to listen to this book before the second book, I do recommend it.
I listened to the first in this series (Red Cell). This is a big improvement both in writing and narration. While you don't need to listen to the first book it does help. The characters are interesting and different, not your usual spooks or analysts. The book is well paced.
After recently listening to books by Brian Haig, James Huston, and Adrian McKinty this book was a big change. Unlike those just mentioned, this book is simply a detective novel. No sophisticated undercurrents of geopolitics, no historical relevance simply a fast paced who done it with an over the top rich, good looking, womanizing main character. Oh sure his personal life is a mess but he still gets the women. A bit James Bond-y with the latest and greatest science toys and the guy who gets the girl.
Interesting premise around the lead character of a guy people hire to find hard to find people -it works well. The story is well paced, well written, interesting, has enough action, and contains surprises. The lead is like-able and mysterious. The narrator does a fine job. I am looking forward to more in this series (well I sure hope it is a series, it is set up well to become one).
I listened to some of Brian Haig's earlier novels a few years ago and enjoyed them. In the intervening years I listened to or read a number of other espionage, detective, and military novels, but what struck me about this novel, and Haig's work in general, is how sophisticated and intelligent they are. They are not mind candy or diversions from reality; there is no clear right or wrong, but shades of grey and the messy business of reality. Haig doesn't rant like some authors (Thor's recent work for example) yet subtlety illustrates for the reader/listener his point. Much more sophisticated and engaging. Great book, great author and well narrated. I hope Haig doesn't wait so long to write his next book.
This book is full of action but when you get to the end, the only thing accomplished was survival. No bad guys vanquished, no plot disrupted, no forward progress in stopping the evil men and plot. I was disappointed that survival was the only victory. The book has lots of action but not much of a story or plot.
I have listened to all 3 books in this series, the first one was the best of the three, and this might be the least. The plots have potential but I think the double and triple secrecy, distrust, convoluted plots, number of characters, the ease or frequency that characters are killed off, and lack of a likable protagonist make it difficult to feel satisfied at the end of the book. I have listened to the Grey Man, John Wells, Jack Reacher, John Rain, Johnathan Quinn, Pike Logan and other espionage series and this is by far the series that is the most graphic, cavalier and liberal with the use of torture. It also goes to great lengths to describe multiple times the human body’s reaction to being hit with various types of ammunition. It almost feels like the author has a fascination with firearms with the level of detail given to them and the ammunition, torture and bullets penetrating flesh. The whole series feels off, a bit disturbing or unsettling. Even Tom Wood’s Victor and Barry Eisler’s John Rain series about assassins are satisfying, this Black Flag series isn't. Listen/read the first book but stop there.
This is my first Tom Clancy book and if this is any indication of how he wrote it will be my last. I have been enjoying the Grey Man series by Mark Greaney and went looking to see if he has released another in the series yet. Instead I see a Tom Clancy/Mark Greaney recent release Support and Defend. So I give it a try. Pretty good book and well worth a listen but I realized it wasn't the first book in the series so I decided to go back and pick up the earlier books when the campus series started. What a mistake. Teeth of the Tiger is nothing like Support and Defend. It is repetitive (more than once we are given information –the same information only presented a wee bit differently). It is melancholy, lacks energy to move the book forward; there is no suspense (NONE), loaded with useless detail about the Sr. Ryan that isn’t needed for the story. Actually a good bit of the book recaps events from the Sr. Ryan’s life almost with nostalgic reverence. It was actually torturous to listen to and more than once I considered just turning it off never to turn it back on. Now that I have finished the book I realize I should have just turned it off. I guess I kept it on because I had enjoyed Support and Defend and naively held out hope for this book. Don’t waste your time or a credit, skip this book.
The Robin Monarch series balances time spent developing the characters, learning about their internal conflicts, and plenty of action. He is a hero we can love and root for. I have listened to all 3 novels and the short stories and enjoyed all of them, including this one. The Thief, through flashbacks, provides a great deal of Monarch & Sister Rachael’s history. This was a good book but I don’t think it was the best of the 3 and I can’t put my finger on why. While I wanted to keep listening and not turn it off, once off I wasn't going nuts trying to get back to the book, at least not in the beginning. I should mention that Sullivan clearly has a 'playful' side deliberately using irony and humor which enhances the books and makes them different than some in this genre. If you have enjoyed the other Monarch stories you will like this one, just maybe not as much as some of the others.
There really wasn't much 'Reacher' about this story. I am not even sure why it was written. The only thing I found interesting about this short story was the location - because I know the area in Maine; an area that even most Mainers don't know (most live in southern Maine and never drive north). There just didn't seem to be much point to the story. Reacher was an observer and not really a participant in the story - very un-Reacher like.
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