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Publisher's Summary

An extraordinary cutting-edge thriller from the New York Times-bestselling grandmaster of international suspense.

Meticulous research, crisp narratives, plots as current as today's headlines - Frederick Forsyth has helped define the international thriller as we know it. And now he does it again.

What if you had carte blanche to fight evil? Nothing held back, nothing off the table. What would you do? For decades, the world has been fighting the drug cartels, and losing, their billions of dollars making them the most powerful and destructive organizations on earth. Until one man is asked to take charge. Paul Devereaux used to run Special Operations for the CIA before they retired him for being too ruthless. Now he can have anything he requires, do anything he thinks necessary. No boundaries, no rules, no questions asked.

The war is on-though who the ultimate winner will be, no one can tell...

©2010 Frederick Forsyth (P)2010 Penguin Audiobooks

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall
  • Tim
  • Fremont, NE, United States
  • 08-27-10

Another Good Read by Forsyth

Reading through the other reviews, I do share a number of opinions with other reviewers. Here's my take:

1. Another great Forsyth story. A little slow to start, but once it gets going, it's a nice ride.

2. Don't get the criticisms of the reader. Other than a few mispronounced words, he was fine.

3. While I would agree that it's not Forsyth's best, it is certainly not his worst. It was an enjoyable read, and based on how well Forsyth usually researches his topics, it is likely you'll learn something about the drug smuggling problem in the process of reading. To me, Forsyth's mediocre books are better than other authors' best offerings, so it was worth my time and money.

4. I liked the fact that he used characters from a previous book. I may be wrong, but I don't remember this in previous Forsyth books, and it was a nice touch.

5. I do agree that the ending seemed a bit rushed and while probably realistic, I also would have preferred (as another reviewer stated) a "happier, but less realistic ending".

All said - don't shy away from this one. If this is your first venture into Forsyth's novels, I'd recommend you read "The Day of the Jackal" or "Avenger" first.

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Brendan
  • lilburn, GA, United States
  • 08-22-10

Hmmm, not his best

I've read just about everything Frederick Forsyth has done. He has become rather predictable down the years. Nowadays, he spends a little too much time praising the extraordinary skills of the military. I'm sure they are, but they are not gods and the occasional flub would be better for the fiction.

His druggies are very bad, as no doubt they are, but I suspect they would not fall over quite so fast in real life as Freddie makes 'em go down.

As usual, his work requires a close listen, there is the usual attention to detail and that is something I do like. I suspect his sources were rather better in the past than they are nowadays.

The split-strike ending is downright peculiar, and while he does usually wrap a surprise up, I just got the feeling that this ending was rather constructed to fit his usual patterns.

The readers pronunciation of some Scottish terms was off here and there, but it was a perfectly competent read. Just not Freddie's best.


9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

I was bored

Gotta tell you, this was more like listening to a disertation of the history of the cocaine trade than anything else. No real character development. Quite honestly, I got bored very quickly and didn't even finish the book.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Poor 2nd half

Build up to midpoint of the novel was good. 2nd half was disappointing. It felt like Fred finished to please his editor as the plot got to a point where it had no where to go.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Tedd
  • United States
  • 08-24-10

The Cobra

On the whole, a worthwhile listen -- if nothing else, for the painstakingly researched insights into the problem and the international eresponse thereto. The plot is engaging, though Forsyth, in true Brit style, occasionally gets bogged down in the details. A little like reading a Greek history at times. Narration was solid, though transitions from section to section were often botched, leaving the listener needing a beat to find their place. If you'd prefer not to read a general description of the ending, stop reading this. Do be prepared to scratch your head a little and simply enjoy the rest of the story.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Performance
  • Story
  • Xavier
  • Los Angeles, CA, United States
  • 09-27-14

Thoroughly Enjoyable!

Very contemporary theme of stopping the flow of cocaine from S. America to the United States and Europe. The plot was fascinating starting with a history synopsis of how the cocaine drug system operates. Next, exciting characters were developed together with an action packed story to defeat it. I listened to this book twice and I'm sure in the future I will enjoy it many more times. Frederick Forsyth is one of my favorites.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Not for Me

I like a book where I live the action. This one tells you the action in a detached, matter of fact way. There is no climax, because there is no action. Even the twist at the end was not told in a way to engage the listener. It is a good premise, I just wish it were a better book.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Interesting premise

I liked the premise and the narrator. The ending was very weak and rather poorly thought out.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Clayton
  • WEST PALM BEACH, FL, United States
  • 10-07-10

great premise/so so execution

A lot of imagination went into this book and Fosyth is a fine writer. He also gives you an extraordinary window into the world of cocaine production and distribution. Still, the characters don't really hold up and there are plot holes that are too big to be reasonably set aside. Read it if you love his work, otherwise, there's better stuff out there on Audible.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

OK, but not as good as his other books

It was good, but the ending was a little less impressive. As usual, Forsyth does a great job developing his characters and building a story, but I thought the ending was a little flat compared to his other works.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful