Monday, November 5, 2012

Targets of Deception by Jeffrey S. Stephens

Ex-CIA agent Jordan Sandor races against time to prevent a worldwide terrorist plot in the page-turning thrilling prequel to Targets of Opportunity.When Jordan Sandor resigned from active service with the Central Intelligence Agency, it was before September 11th, before the fall of Saddam Hussein, and before the world had so dramatically changed. He is reluctantly drawn back into action when a series of violent events leads him to suss out a new al-Qaeda conspiracy to initiate cataclysmic assaults with poison gas. 
Sandor follows the deadly trail from New York to Florida to Paris and, ultimately, to the small town of Portofino on the Italian Riviera. Never sure who he can trust and who may be an enemy, Jordan relies on his experience, instincts, and skills as he risks his life to uncover plans for attacks against the United States and its allies. When Sandor discovers a rogue agent behind the plot, he realizes he is the one man who can prevent the catastrophe that could put the lives of millions of people at stake.
 Ah thrillers! I do like a good thriller and this one was a pretty interesting one. This one is about deception, loyalty, betrayal, life and death on a personal as well as political and global level. The bad guys aren't always obvious and that is what keeps the tension. The mystery is the goal of the terrorists and those terrorists are home grown. The end game is also a bit terrifying when you learn that the author is talking about a real threat with a deadly gas that has actually been made. Sometimes you wonder what people were thinking when they developed this stuff.

The book is layered on many levels. There is the personal in which we understand Jordan Sandor and his problem with the main terrorist players. He lost his men by this betrayer. Even though this is personal, Jordan is professional about it and knows that he must find out what the end game is and not worry about revenge. This really made me like his character. He was a good guy with good guy priorities. The other layers involve the national level and it isn't just the US that is threatened. Nor is the end game all about politics. Much of it ends up being our old enemy, greed by any means possible.

I enjoyed these layers and how it was all executed together for this adventure. At times the pacing is a bit uneven, but I don't think you mind as you sometimes needed a bit of a lull to catch up. It is an easy read and you don't have to know too much about world politics to understand. They catch you up quite nicely within the story. My main problem was with Christine. It is a problem I have with a lot of thrillers. The woman was a bit obtrusive and really had no business past a certain point. She had no skills that could get them out of tight situations. I would like to see more competent women with in these tales and it would also make more sense when the hero falls for them. Plus, I just couldn't see her being a girlfriend to him considering his job. It just didn't feel true.

I give this thriller 4 stars. It's multilayer storytelling with interesting twists kept my interest. I recommend it to anyone seeking a contemporary thriller.
I received this book from the Pocket Books and no compensation for my review was given.

13 comments:

  1. Hooray for a good thriller! I love these types of stories but in movie form. For some reason I can get intro more. Thanks for the review.

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    1. Ah... there are some books that can do the same, but I also love a good movie thriller! :)

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  2. I am going to have to put this on my list! It does sounds right up my alley :)

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    1. I was thinking of you when I was reading this one. Felicia would like this... :)

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  3. I agree a great thriller is so much fun! And this one is new for me. It sounds like a complex story.

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    1. It's not actually too complex. The information is presented in a way that seems logical so it's an easy read.

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  4. "It is an easy read and you don't have to know too much about world politics to understand."

    This is good because otherwise I'm thinking I would be lost in this book! I haven't read a good thriller in a while, I've forgotten how much I enjoy them:) Thanks for the review Melissa!

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    1. Didn't get lost even once. Actually although it deals with the world, it is more about American politics as it deals with home and world terrorism.

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  5. A thriller, cool :) Still maybe not for me this time

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  6. I really need more thrillers, I am hunting some down for next year. I love the complex storylines and twists and turns, Have you read Gone Girl, yet?

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    1. Oh I do want to read it. I really need to get that book.

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  7. I don't generally read thrillers and tend to say it's not a genre for me. But the ones I do pick up because of crossover appeal or whatever, I do enjoy. And I do enjoy a layered story!

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