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"A weapon designed to decimate the Roman Empire has just become the number one threat to the United States. From the national bestselling author of The Lions of Lucerne, Path of the Assassin, and State of the Union comes the most gripping international thriller yet featuring Navy SEAL turned covert counterterrorism agent Scot Harvath. ""Scot Harvath is the perfect all-American hero for the post-September 11th world."" -- Nelson DeMille When a mystery thousands of years in the making threatens to catapult the enemies of America to a sure and decisive victory, the only person the president can call for help is the man the administration has just fired. Caught live on Al Jazeera in an off-the-books operation, Scot Harvath's career has been terminated and he is forced to go to ground as the president bows to pressure from a ruthless senator with her sights set on the White House. But when the tide in the war on terror suddenly turns against the U.S., the president has no choice but to secretly bring Harvath back inside. Ducking a congressional subpoena, Harvath travels to the Mediterranean, where he learns of a shadowy organization that has been combing the earth for decades in search of the ultimate weapon to use against the United States and her allies. Now, after three summers of record-setting heat across present-day Europe, one steadily melting Alpine glacier has given up an ancient secret--one with the potential to thrust civilization back into the Dark Ages. From Cyprus, London, and Paris, to Italy, Switzerland, and Saudi Arabia, Harvath must race against the clock to stop one of the greatest evils ever to face the United States. With his characteristic high-voltage action, sweeping international locales, and meticulous research, Brad Thor has created another supercharged novel that is sure to thrill. "
- Characters with no soul, a plot with no belief
Gee, another one-dimensional superspy who effortlessly moves from country to country while easily finding bad guys that no one else can find. Oh, and all the bad guys are ruthless, sadistic, torturing terrorists, but the only thing our hero can think of doing when he captures them is to smack them around a little. Good thing the plot defies all credibility, with a little race-against-time-to-save-the-world thrown in just to be generic....more info
- America's James Bond
America's needed its own super secret agent for a while, and Brad Thor's created him: Scott Horvath. Horvath can get in and out of any country in the world, bed any woman, and find a way out of any situation he finds himself in, no matter how impossible the odds.
In this book Horvath must find a way to stop the spread of a biological weapon that could spell the end for the Non-Muslim world. His journey takes him from the mid-East to Great Britain to France to Switzerland to Saudi Arabia and many other places. Along the way there are gunfights, chases, bombs, mountain climbing, hang gliding, and political subterfuge.
This is a very entertaining novel with a fairly plausible plot line. Recommended!...more info
This was an interesting book, I would probably purchase additional items from this author....more info
- Could this happen? Maybe
If you like the TV series "24', then you will like this book. I made the mistake of reading this story right after I read "Act Of Treason". Scot Harvath is a lot like Mitch Rapp in the way they deal with terrorists, so I was mixing them up some. What makes this story one star over the other is the plot and the way the story line develops; it seemed so possible to me. It also surprised me how old the use of germ and chemical warfare is....more info
- Solid Plotting, Solid Research
This is a breakthrough novel for Brad Thor. His work on this book places him into the very good category of writers of thrillers and positions him to move into the ranks of the great.
The plot: Scot Harvath, a trouble-shooter for the President of the United States, is suckered by Khalid Alomari, a henchman of Osama bin Laden, into an Al Jazeera videotaping which apparently shows him beating up an innocent Muslim merchant on the streets of Baghdad. This careless mistake, the resultant world outrage, and the opportunistic maneuvering of a clever woman U.S. senator, who wants to be president, force Scot to resign and prepare to go into hiding to avoid the senator's wrath and revenge.
But before Scot can get away, events begin to pile up on the President; and he is forced to call upon Scot for help. An U.S. Army combat team, looking for missing American relief workers, finds itself in a village in northern Iraq where most of the Christian inhabitants have died in a ghastly fashion from some sort of highly contagious outbreak. Only Muslim residents survive. U.S. agents determine that the villagers have been intentionally infected. Some of the soldiers soon succumb to the same illness. Then, one by one, Muslim scientists who worked on an international research project begin to die in apparent accidents. Because of this intricate interweaving of setbacks, because he is not one to toss away loyalty and effectiveness, and because he knows that the U.S. is facing its greatest danger ever, the President decides that Scot is the person with the necessary attributes and background to save the United States. Scot and a handful of resourceful specialists race from point to point around the world and from disaster to disaster to carry out this mission.
Author Brad Thor does a masterful job of designing a plot that keeps readers interested and in suspense as he has his protagonist et al try to solve the deadly problems they encounter. The relationship between Scot and Jillian Alcott, the female lead character, is particularly well done. Thor keeps the interaction close and professional, but not romantic. Jillian and several of the other characters deserve revisiting in future novels.
Best of all, however, is the author's thorough, precise research. Thor presents a realistic assessment of the Saudi Arabian dilemma, delineates the Sunni vs. Shia division of Muslims, and gives an enlightening history of al-Qaeda and Osama bin Laden (author's spelling). He provides insights into a multitude of topics, including the history of Hannibal of Carthage, exotic reptiles, and ancient warfare technologies.
His clear-headed discussions of the Muslim world are perhaps even more valuable than his considerable contribution in this book as a writer of good fiction....more info
Brad Thor scores again with Blowback, a whipcrack thriller that tackles religious fanaticism and international terrorism with verve and style to spare. His protagonist, Scot Horvath, has been sent out to pasture by a meddling politician, but soon is brought back into the fold to take on a villain with a taste for biological weaponry. Alarmingly prescient and well-researched, it delivers the goods. Definitely check out James Macomber's A Grave Breach if you enjoyed this one....more info
- Realistic and frightening....
A thriller straight out of todays headlines and frightening in its realism and intensity. This book needs to be required reading for adults of all political creeds as well as for the "Capitol Hill Crowd"... Brad Thor is a superb author with an all too frightening grasp of todays issues in the world....more info
This is a good thriller, that is fast paced, and with interesting characters and dialoged, very entertaining. That's the good news, the bad, is the plot is absurd; the science behind the bio weapon is laughable, a trip down the Jurassic Park style crypto-biology fiction that's a million times less likely. And the main characters is an active duty US Navy SEAL, but who worked for the US Secret Service (can't happen, violation of federal law), then went to work for a supper secret foreign intel/ counter terrorism unit in US Dept. of Homeland Security, the Secretary of Homeland Security has no control over...... WHAT?
BUT, it is entertaining, Thor gets the terrorism thing, and understands modern fascist Islamic radicalism, and his characters are likable. This is not his best book, but it is worth the read.
- Another winner for Brad Thor!
Scot Harvath was introduced in the first novel by Brad Thor, "The Lions of Lucerne." It was such a spectacular book that I couldn't believe it was Thor's first. Happily, he has continued with the exciting life of Agent Harvath. In his fourth novel, Blowback, Harvath is captured on Al Jazeera TV chasing down and beating ruthlessly an innocent shopkeeper in Baghdad. It has been a deliberate set-up by a top-ranking Al Qaeda terrorist who Harvath was closing in on, who paid the merchant to switch places with him. Harvath's face was not shown, but a conniving female senator you love to hate relentlessly investigates the national embarrassment in hopes of derailing the re-election of popular President Rutledge (who has also been a "regular" in the Harvath books). Senator Carmichael uses every resource at her disposal to discover the identity of the American operative involved in the apparent black ops incident. A beleaguered president sends Harvath out of the country before the senator can have the supoena served and expose him publicly. So begins the story.
To my initial puzzlement, this book almost departed from any believability as a convoluted plot developed to restore the Ottoman empire and annihilate most of the US population using a biological weapon derived from a discovery of Hannibal's expedition over the Alps. No, I'm not kidding. I wasn't sure I could "get into" such a far-fetched story, but after going through the dubious origin of the mysterious poison-cum-biological weapon, the author steered the story back into the familiar area of high-tech weaponry, betrayals, near escapes, and strong characters who were lifelike. By the middle of the book I was enthralled and I have to admit I ended up enjoying Blowback every bit as much as Thor's previous three novels. The action scenes are masterfully executed. With Thor, you get either heroic, noble characters or complete scoundrels; you don't see much in between. Naturally the hero is always right in his instincts and always smarter than his rivals or foes. This works perfectly when a reader wants to enjoy an armchair escape from a complicated world and just enjoy being entertained by nonstop action. I recommend Blowback very highly. I do think it's best to buy all four books and read them in order: The Lions of Lucerne, Path of the Assasin, State of the Union, and Blowback. I can promise that anyone who opens the first one will hungrily read (and love) all four novels. In fact, I can't wait for the next installment...hope he brings back Scot Harvath soon!...more info
- Very Poor Writing
Not even close to Vince Flynn, similar character and plot, but poor writing makes Flynns books look even better...more info
- Blowback was a good read if you have an imagination
I can only imagine the people who didn't like this book, lacked an imagination, or consider themselves superior in some ways; i.e. a book critic. I found the book a real page turner. Maybe it's my background in Medicine, maybe it just clicked with me, I'm not sure. Some of the plot may be a bit far fetched compared to reality, but guess what people, it's FICTION. I don't remember people getting up out of the theater at Star Wars shows in the 1970's saying "bah light speed is impossible, a Wookie absurd, or the Force is a joke". Really, I'm not sure why some people even read fiction. I read it to escape reality, and enjoy the trip. Well, I enjoyed this trip to the extreme. Read the whole book during a slow day at work, and continuing till about midnight that same day until I finished. First book I've read front to back in same day, especially considering I still had to work, and home responsibilities of wife/kids. While you may hear readers complain about stereotypes of Muslims, or the "impossibility" of the plot. I'll just say that stereotypes occur for a reason, and "impossible" is only considered that until it happens. Many things in our history were considered impossible. Man flying for example. Anyway, I liked this book as much as most of my Ludlum collection. A+++++ I think ;)...more info
- Great , fast paced Thriller!
: an unforeseen and unwanted effect, result, or set of repercussions
: CIA code name for an agent or operation that has turned on its
: botched covert action
Former Navy SEAL Scot Harvath in an instant realizes he's blown and many fatwa will be placed upon his head. Al Jazeera has captured him beating a poor, helpless Iraqi, not his nemesis Khalid Sheik Alomari, a superior and ruthless Al Qaeda assassin he has been tracking for months. Though his face is not seen, the American Flag patch on his camouflaged fatigues is. He is immediately recalled to D.C. He is forced to resign from the Office of International Investigative Assistance at DHS by popular President Jack Rutledge. He's stunned to learn that his years of service and loyalty to this President mean nothing. Or do they?
Ripped from the Headlines, Thor delivers a chilling fast-paced plot that is both smart and frightening. Entombed in an Alpine glacier, an ancient weapon designed to annihilate the Roman Empire has been found. A group with Al Qaeda links led by the Scorpion intends to use it to bring America to her knees.
A group of Islamic scientists working on the miracle of the 'Sword of Allah' are dying in accidents arranged by Khalid Sheik Alomari while villagers and Christian Missionaries in Northwest Iraq die a slow painful death as do the Soldiers from Arrowhead Brigade SBCT who discover this diseased village devoured by "Algul!! Algul! Algul!" (vampire) leaving only the Sunni. The Christians and Shiites all are dead. Scot reluctantly accepts a Black Operation to find the only surviving scientist who may know the connection between the deaths, the deadly biochemical, and the 'Sword of Allah, because he must avoid a subpoena from the powerful obdurate Senator Helen Carmichael. Bring down Rutledge, and become the first woman POTUS, no matter the cost to the country or allies her secret dossiers.
Without support from his government, Harvath must accept help from the Uncle of the kidnapped scientist (whom he doesn't trust) and beautiful Molecular Biologist Jillian Alcott. Jillian and Scot soon discover a possible connection to the missing scientist and the biological weapon as they evade Khalid Sheik Alomari and murder charges. As they race across Europe, and the Middle East, the reader delves into the terrifying world of Wahhabism, the Royal Saudi family, and the Profit's lineage to stop the pandemic that is about to released upon the world, while Harvath's former bosses try to stop the Senator.
Although slightly too long, Thor totally convinces the reader of this world's situation that I wondered if any Al Qaeda read it. If they did, I TRULY am frightened! Great story.
Anne Molinarolo...more info
- Caricatures instead of characters
I picked up this book because I usually enjoy thrillers - especially political and legal. I wish I'd paid more attention to the negative reviews. In my opinion, this is a pale imitation of the Baldacci, Ludlum, Follett, Forsyth etc. I've enjoyed in the past. The few chapters I've read thus far are formulaic (at best) and the characters are so over-the-top that they read like a Saturday Night Live parody. I don't think I'm going to waste my time finishing the book.
- Wow. It's a winner
Read this book over the Christmas, New Year break. Didn't want to put it down. I feel spoiled by the writing of Dan Brown after reading The Davinci Code, but this was as enjoyable. Look forward to his next book, Takedown....more info
- Over the mountain
Brad Thor never fails to not only write a exceptional thriller but to include in his fiction some fact such as the bio-chemical possibilty of Hannibals armys from centurys ago. I also enjoy his own visions of the world we live in today and how foolish we as a nation are dealing with people that are still living in caves and eating with their hands considering bringing Democracy to them. As he expresses in a underlying way we are wasting our time. A good book everyone looking for a thriller will certainly enjoy....more info
- Let's Hope This Remains Fiction - Gripping Stuff!!!!
This is a book that most readers will find unsettling. Not so much for the terrific story contained within, but more for the history lesson the reader receives about the Saudi Royal family, the tenuousness of the world's oil supply, and the danger posed to the non-Muslim world by the Wahhabis, the radical Muslim movement from which all modern Islamic terrorisim has sprung. We can hope and pray that there are many Scot Harvaths out there doing the work of defending us from the plots and plans of the radical Muslims, but no one should be sanguine that the threat is not real and the situation is not truly dangerous.
Brad Thor weaves a chilling tale involving the release of a disease which can cause a pandemic in the non-Muslim world with its roots in the crossing of the Alps by Hannibal hundreds of years ago. There is no need for a suspension of belief in reading this book as the author lays out his case very well and convincingly.
This book is hard to put down and the world situation it describes will give you some sleepless nights, however you owe it to yourself to read and learn from one of the masters of this genre. ...more info
- Unbelievable plot and a boneheaded protagonist
The protagonist, Scott Horvath, first appears in chapter 3 where he screws-up the capture of a top al-Qaeda agent. He keeps making boneheaded mistakes throughout the novel. I guess he left his brain behind on a previous mission.
Anyone who made it through high school biology will recognize the absurdities of the novel's biowarfare elements. The evil Islamic scientists modify an ancient bioweapon so that it avoids affecting muslims and causes black, liquified brains to leak from the noses of the non-muslim victims. Right.
Horvath, working alone due to political shenanigans (by a Hillary Clinton-like senator), manages to trot around the globe putting pieces together while still making dumb mistakes (such as continually underestimating the top al-Qaeda agent who had eluded him for years). He does get to show off his knowledge Carthaginian warfare (as if we care).
I have read half the book and have little incentive to finish. Brad Thor's editor should have whopped him up the side of the head. His previous novels were much better....more info
- Does for Islam what the DaVinci Code did for Catholicism
Brad Thor's thriller "Blowback" delivers as far as the international thrills and chills go. Main character Scot Harvath is a counterterrorism expert on the tail of an Al-Qaeda operative who catches wind of something new - a plague that is being resurrected from the ancient past to be used against all non-Muslims.
Harvath pursues his leads across Europe and the Middle East - that part is lots of fun. I have issues with Thor's treatment of Muslims and his main thesis.
Every Muslim in the book, with the exception of two, is either a brazen hypocrite or a crazed religious fanatic. One of the good Muslim is killed by the virus being spread the fanatics and the other is shot by the hypocrites. There are literally dozens of Muslims in the book - and only two are decent people?
Thor's book rests on the premise that the Ottoman Empire is trying to resurrect itself by using fanatics like Al-Qaeda and the Wahhabis to weaken modern Muslim countries like Saudi Arabia. The problem with that is this: most Muslims openly hated the Ottoman government. Why? The Sultan (head of the secular government) also gave himself the title of Caliph (head of the religious structure). That is a giant no-no in Islam - Islam must not be subservient to a government. Also, there was a bit of enthic dislike thrown in since the Ottomans were Turks and there has often been a pro-Arab stance in Al-Qaeda and the Wahhabis.
To even make it more laughable, the Ottoman Empire was one of the most poorly-run countries in Europe throughout most of the 18th and 19th centuries - it was called the "Sick Man of Europe" because everyone was waiting for it to collapse at any second. Why would descendants of that inept dynasty be of any interest to modern Muslims?
****END OF SPOILERS****
So, great thrills marred by laughable conspiracy and hopeless stereotyping of Muslims. I give this one a grade of C-...more info
- Very Entertaining, great book.
For a recent trip I ordered both Blowback and Takedown. Both were great books and very entertaining. ...more info
- BLOWBACK WILL BLOW YOU AWAY!
In his chase for a wanted terrorist, Scott Harvath is caught on camera beating up an "innocent bystander" dressed like the terrorist. To avoid political fallout over the incident, Scott is forced to resign, by the President's Chief of Staff, but immediately given the chance to redeem himself by chasing down the origin of a bio-weapon designed to kill alll but the most dedicated followers of Islam.
His search for the disease leads us on a chase across Europe, and the Middle East, as he, and other spies attempt to find, not only the origins of the mysterious bio-weapon, but also those who developed it, and plan to use it against the U.S. and all who oppose Islam.
Blowback is Brad Thors best book to date! The characters are better developed than in his past novels, and the action is non-stop in what is sure to be his best-selling novel to date!...more info
- Blow Back
Nicely written thriller that continues Brad Thor's serial. If you like a good mystery/thriller then you need to look into this series....more info
Brad Thor is great. First time I read one of his books was when I was searching for something to read while relative in hospital. The book and another were finished before my relative was out of the hospital....more info
- Fast Paced Action and Biological Terrorism
Another fast paced action thriller by Brad Thor. Our hero, Scott Harvath is racing to stop a chemical attack against the United States. While Harvath is a bit too much of a super hero (do bullets ever hit this guy?) it still a guilty pleasure kind of a read that is very well researched and deals not only with modern day terrorism but also the ancient's use of biological and chemical weapons. ...more info
- Brad Thor fires on all cylinders!
This is the fourth book in the Scot Harvath series - and it is my favorite so far. This book has it all - Islamic terrorists, guns-a-blazin' action, and a bit of political intrigue to cap it all off. This book reminded me a bit of a Vince Flynn novel, which is always a good thing!
I found this to be a fast-paced and believable thriller that rockets the reader back and forth between characters, sub-plots, countries, and non-stop action; highly recommended!...more info
- Lots of brain, brawn and action
Brad Thor knows how to write an entertaining read. It comes out of the gate at full-throttle and hardly lets up. I like the brainy women, the suave, tough-as-nails hero. But it's not as predictable as that sounds. His heroes bleed and fail and find the gumption to try again. Intrigue and "newsiness" make it always interesting. Sometimes, "Blowback" feels a bit manipulative, but it doesn't get in the way of the enjoyment. Buy it with confidence: you'll like it....more info
- Not Thor's Best, but worth the read
Blowback isn't thor's best, but it's absolutely worth the read, especially if you've read the prior novels in the series.......more info
- great read
This is an exceptionally good read. I could not put this book down. I highly recommend this to all....more info