I’ve been hooked on military and spy thrillers for years. Here are six thrillers you need to read.
To unmask a CIA mole, John Wells must resume his old undercover identity as an al Qaeda jihadi—and hope he can survive it—in this cutting-edge novel from the #1 New York Times-bestselling author.
It is the most dangerous mission of John Wells’s career.
Evidence is mounting that someone high up in the CIA is doing the unthinkable—passing messages to ISIS, alerting them to planned operations. Finding out the mole’s identity without alerting him, however, will be very hard, and to accomplish it, Wells will have to do something he thought he’d left behind forever. He will have to reassume his former identity as an al Qaeda jihadi, get captured, and go undercover to befriend an ISIS prisoner in a secret Bulgarian prison.
Many years before, Wells was the only American agent ever to penetrate al Qaeda, but times have changed drastically. The terrorist organizations have multiplied: gotten bigger, crueler, more ambitious and powerful. Wells knows it may well be his death sentence. But there is no one else.
You can read my review of The Prisoner by Alex Berenson here.
Target Omega by Peter Kirsanow
A propulsive, high-stakes debut thriller where one extraordinary operator holds the key to saving the world from Armageddon. All he needs to do is stay alive.
Buried deep in the US defense and special forces architecture is an elite, ultra-black unit, created expressly to prevent weapons of mass destruction from falling into the hands of terrorists and rogue regimes. Their covert, surgical strikes eliminate grave threats so the rest of America can sleep without fear. Until now.
After returning from a successful operation in Pakistan, the entire team is assassinated within forty-eight hours. Only their leader, Michael Garin, survives.
As the sole survivor and chief suspect of the attack, Garin finds himself on the run from Iranian intelligence operatives bent on tracking and killing him. Even Garin’s own government appears to have turned against him, sending a lethal sniper from the vaunted Delta Force to eliminate the threat they think he’s become.
With enemies coming at him from every direction, Garin’s fight for survival becomes part of a larger conspiracy unfolding on the world’s stage: a catastrophic attack—precipitated by escalating tensions in the Middle East—that will shift the balance of power and plunge the United States of America into oblivion.
You can read my review of Target Omega by Peter Kirsanow here.
Former Delta Force officer and New York Times bestselling author Brad Taylor delivers a relentlessly fast-paced, gripping thriller featuring Taskforce operators Pike Logan and Jennifer Cahill as they come face-to-face with an insidious threat to strike terror into the heart of America.
Fifteen years ago, in order to win a contract in the Kingdom, a desperate defense contractor used a shell company to provide a bribe to a wealthy Saudi businessman. Now a powerful player in the defense industry, he panics when the Panama Papers burst onto the public scene. Providing insight into the illicit deeds of offshore financing, they could prove his undoing.
To prevent the exposure of his illegal activities, he sets in motion a plan to interdict the next leak, but he is not the only one worried about spilled secrets. The data theft has left the Taskforce potentially vulnerable, leaving a trail that could compromise the unit. Back in the good graces of the new president, Pike Logan and Jennifer Cahill are ordered to interdict the next leak as well, in order to control the damage.
Unbeknownst to either group, the Saudi has been using the shell company to fund terrorists all over the world, and he has a spectacular attack planned, coinciding with the fifteenth anniversary of 9/11. The information Pike and Jennifer uncover will put them on the trail of the imminent threat, but it’s one that they might be unable to stop.
Called Ring of Fire, it will cause unimaginable destruction across the United States, and the ensuing chaos and terror will distract the Taskforce from a truth no one sees: Ring of Fire was only the beginning, and the danger is far from over.
You can read my review of Ring of Fire by Brad Taylor here.
“The best submarine novel since Tom Clancy’s The Hunt for Red October.” –Booklist (starred review)
The USS Kentucky-a Trident ballistic missile submarine carrying a full complement of 192 nuclear warheads-is about to go on a routine patrol. Not long after it reaches the open sea, however, the Kentucky receives a launch order. After receiving that launch order, it is cut off from all counter-orders and disappears into the Pacific while it makes the eight-day transit to the launch site. What the Kentucky’s crew doesn’t know is that those launch orders haven’t actually come from the U.S. government.
Rogue elements within the Mossad have learned that Iran has developed its first nuclear weapon and, in ten days, will detonate it-and the target is Israel. The suspected weapon complex is too far underground for conventional weapons to harm it, and the only choice is a pre-emptive nuclear strike. With limited time, this rogue group initiates a long-planned operation called the Trident Deception. They’ll transmit false orders and use a U.S. nuclear submarine to launch the attack.
In this thriller from Rick Campbell, with only 8 days before the Kentucky is in launch range and with the submarine cut off from any outside communication, one senior officer, the father of one of the officers aboard the submarine, must assemble and lead a team of attack submarines to find, intercept and neutralize the Kentucky before it can unknowingly unleash a devastating nuclear attack.
“With his latest pulse-pounding adventure, Brad Thor puts the rest of the genre on notice—Use of Force is the thriller to beat in 2017.”—The Real Book Spy
From #1 New York Times bestselling author Brad Thor.
As a storm rages across the Mediterranean Sea, a terrifying distress call is made to the Italian Coast Guard. Days later, a body washes ashore.
Identified as a high value terrorism suspect (who had disappeared three years prior), his name sends panic through the Central Intelligence Agency.
Where was he headed? What was he planning? And could he be connected to the “spectacular attack” they have been fearing all summer?
In a race against time, the CIA taps an unorthodox source to get answers: Navy SEAL turned covert counterterrorism operative, Scot Harvath.
Hired on a black contract, Harvath will provide the deniability the United States needs, while he breaks every rule along the way.
Packed with pulse-pounding action, fascinating characters, and electrifying intrigue, Brad Thor does it again and proves why he is known around the world as the “Master of Thrillers.”
The year is 2108, and the North American Commonwealth is bursting at the seams. For welfare rats like Andrew Grayson, there are only two ways out of the crime-ridden and filthy welfare tenements, where you’re restricted to two thousand calories of badly flavored soy every day:
You can hope to win the lottery and draw a ticket on a colony ship settling off-world, or you can join the service.
With the colony lottery a pipe dream, Andrew chooses to enlist in the armed forces for a shot at real food, a retirement bonus, and maybe a ticket off Earth. But as he starts a career of supposed privilege, he soon learns that the good food and decent health care come at a steep price…and that the settled galaxy holds far greater dangers than military bureaucrats or the gangs that rule the slums.
The debut novel from Marko Kloos, Terms of Enlistment is a new addition to the great military sci-fi tradition of Robert Heinlein, Joe Haldeman, and John Scalzi.
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