Sunday, August 18, 2013

Locked On, by Tom Clancy with Mark Greaney

Locked On, by Tom Clancy with Mark Greaney

I loved some of the early Jack Ryan books, but gave up after Red Rabbit and The Teeth Of The Tiger because I thought they were really weak. I spied Locked On on the bargain table and decided to spend a few bucks and see if anything had improved. Surprisingly, there had only been one book between The Teeth Of The Tiger and this one in the last ten years so plot-wise I hadn't missed much.

The story here mainly follows Jack Ryan Jr. and John Clark; the former chasing a terrorist plot through Pakistan and Russia and the latter on the run due to a political witch hunt. Clancy hasn't softened his views towards politics any here; the Democrats are depicted as cartoonish and practically being pro-terrorist. The news outlets are savaged as well ("Liberal bias in the media was a fact of nature.") and shown to eagerly suppress information that shows Democrats in a bad light. While I agree with much of the sentiment here, Clancy takes it to an extreme. The terrorist plot is on nearly a James Bond scale; a Pakistani General steals two nukes from his own country and intends to force a war with India using a Muslim uprising in Russia as a distraction. I don't think this has the depth of The Hunt for Red October or even Debt of Honor, but it was nice to revisit the Jack Ryan Universe once again.

First Sentence:
The Russians call their Kamov-50 helicopter gunship Chernaya Akula—Black Shark.

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