I read book 4 in this series before this one. Oh, how I wish they'd put big numbers on the covers to signify the order of series books. (Just kidding.) Jacob Mitzak and Will Hessler are two badass operatives for the Mossad and The Box in their desire to protect Israel's way off life. This installment offers the finish of a couple story lines and characters but those who come behind them more than fill the needs of both characters and story lines. This story is one of revenge for a tragic wrong that's not common knowledge until way, far, far after its too late to learn otherwise. By then too many lives have been taken and too much blood has been shed to come back from. But we all know that to often those in government positions of authority sometimes make really make bad decisions that often make matters worse. And sometimes there are those in a position to make decisions that are just plain stupid, wrong. This book has more than just one example. Enough said. A good read-get it now.
This story occurs in a very short time. Will Hessler's life has dramatically changed. He has become hardened to fighting, death and the mental and physical trauma associated with it. The life of a Mossad operative has it's shortcomings but also it's many bright spots. Unfortunately, there is a traitor amongst them. Non stop action. Tremendous read!
I wasn't that sold on Will Hessler and how good he was supposed to be. He wasn't really a field operative at that stage and had some training and yet somehow emerged as the best of everyone out in the field. Not entirely sure I'm that caught up in his life to make the leap to the next. A few too many really unlikely coincidences didn't make it better.
Retribution #3 - This book starts one year after Education ends. Over a span of less than four months, this action packed, intriguing, well written story finishes Education's cliffhanger and sets up the next book. There are interesting, new characters introduced. There is always something to stop the flow of the storylines with twists and surprises continuously throughout the pages. The characters, their dialog, the action and the storylines are all realistic and no Hollywood is anywhere present. I strongly recommend reading all the books sequentially to get a complete understanding and full enjoyment of this series. Sometimes it does not pay to do a good deed. Needs minor editing. 5*
The Jericho Black Universe: The following well written books are all part of this universe and take place in a timeline from 1910 until 1980, as of January, 2019. The third book Retribution starts in 1980. All the storylines are carried throughout this series of books. The storylines are intriguing, suspense filled and so mesmerizing it's hard for the reader to put down the book(s). I chain read all but Among Wolves, which I had already read and made me interested in reading the rest of the story. There are plenty of twists, kinks and surprises in all the additions. The pace is steady and fast, no bogging down with trivial fillers. The emotions range across the scale and even the harden reader goes "Oh my gosh." occasionally. Nothing graphic, you just forget how depraved the human race is, especially in the pack (or herd) formation.
The characters are interesting and believable, and their dialog realistic. The reader is drawn into the stories and the author's descriptions are clear and interesting. Most of the characters appear in all the stories or are mentioned for themselves or in past events. The characters run the gamut on personalities, frailties, strengths and levels of depravity and goodness. Nothing is graphic but everything is clear so the reader can make the violence as graphic as their imagination needs. History is a rich character that adds depth and understanding to the stories, which begins during WWII. I know a lot of this history and found the author did a great job with his historical presentation. Mr. Vezina did research his subject matter. After Among Wolves, the editing was much better with very few errors outside of comma usage, or lack of, in the others that I read. In a couple of the books, Mr. Vezina offers a PDF timeline for the JBU. There are more books than what I have read so far. Best to read in sequential order; keeps the excitement flowing and no spoilers that way. I purchased all but The Lion of Israel.
Never Forget, Prequel - The beginning of the JBU. Starting in Auschwitz, this introduction of Aleks Rosen, Saul Greenbaum and Jacob Mitzak. Along with some the rest of the characters that will come and go throughout the series. There are a couple of twists and surprises, along with an interesting showing of foresight, determination and survival through a horrible time and place in world history. 5*
The Hammer of Israel - This is my second favorite of this series; Among Wolves remains number one with me. Mainly about Jacob Mitzak and Jane Sutcliff and their metamorphoses from their experiences from WWII until 1952. There is a lot of violence, none graphic, but what their characters, their determination and their instincts for survival place upon them and the jobs they are able to perform. There's a special lady that will surprise the reader when she's spotlighted. 5*
Among Wolves #1 - This is my first read by this author and I liked the story. The well thought out story line follows a young boy through his discoveries about his grandfather's Nazi SS past and the causes of his mother's hatred. He's able to make his own decisions about the right way of life for him, earning him his grandfather's respect and costing him his mother's love. The young man contributes to the war of hatred after learning a secret about his father. Along his journey, he is supported by many surprising people. The characters are interesting and believable, and their dialog realistic. The reader is drawn into the story and the author's descriptions are clear and interesting. History is a rich character that adds depth and understanding to the story, which begins after WWII. I know a lot of this history and found the author did a great job with his historical presentation. Mr. Vezina did research his subject matter. This well written story could have been a five star if the author had only edited the story. Missing commas, lower case proper nouns and titles, inconsistencies and various other defects distracted the reader because there were so many. Many affected the meaning of the sentences. 4* UPDATE: Among Wolves is updated and changed somewhat according to the author. The update hasn't made it to Amazon as of 01/30/2019.
Education #2 - A cliffhanger that continues in book #3 Retribution. The story is set in 1979 and picks up with Will and Susan and their future together. Playing heavy parts in this story are many of the characters from Never Forget and Among Wolves. Fast paced and filled with a few twists for everyone. Needs better editing. 5*
Danger Close (Btwn #2 & #3) - A short story set in 1979. More on Will Kessler and his transition from his past to his future. His life changes with the murders of his mother and grandfather and the shooting of his girlfriend. He does a job that gets him a shock of a lifetime and changes his future. 5*
The Lion of Israel (Btwn #2 & #3) - This short story introduction is for Ariel Sutcliffe and her contributions to the JBU. Her story, her strengths and her weaknesses, along with some of her jobs and where she is heading. A good, but flawed character that is tested with a special job. This book I found on Booksprout. 5*