Blowback: A Thriller
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When a mysterious new weapon tips the balance against American and Allied forces throughout the Middle East, the only person the president can call for help is the man the administration has just fired - Navy SEAL turned covert Homeland Security operative, Scot Harvath. Caught live on Al Jazeera in an off-the-books operation, Harvath is forced to go to ground as a senator, with presidential aspirations, turns her sights on the White House and forces President Jack Rutledge to publicly end the career of America's number one counter-terrorism operative. But when the tide in the war against terror suddenly turns against the West, the president has no choice but to bring Harvath back inside. Ducking a congressional subpoena, Harvath travels to Cyprus where he learns about a weapon called The Sword of Allah, which terrorists intend to use to rid all Muslim lands of Western infidels. As the layers of truth unfold, Harvath is witness to realities more menacing than he ever could have imagined and must rely solely on his instincts to confront a new evil closing in on the United States. With his characteristic precision in describing military technology, high-voltage action, and sweeping international sensibility, Brad Thor has created another supercharged novel that is sure to thrill.

Customer Reviews:

  • 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
  • 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
  • A Realistic Thriller!
    The hero of Brad Thor's books Scott Harvath is caught forcefully subduing a supposed terrorist on the Al Jazeera news
    station. This incident causes an uproar in the Arab and Muslim
    world.A Senator from Pennysilvania is going to use this incident to make a run for the Vice-Presidency of the Democratic Party.The President is forced to relieve Harvath of
    duty to the United States.
    In the meantime an iceberg in the Alps is starting to defrost.
    A sinister group that has the goal of destroying the United States has come into possession of a powerful weapon that was invented to bring about the destruction of the Roman Empire.The
    President is forced to call upon Harvath to stop this sinister plot before America is destroyed.Harvath clashes with an Al-Queida torrorist assassin named Khalid Shiek Alomari and other
    villains who are involved in this conspiracy.The action moves all over the globe and the action is nonstop.This is Brad Thor's
    best book yet....more info
  • Good Clean & Fast Fun
    Blowback is the 4th book in Brad Thor's thriller series featuring Scott Harvath. This is a fun book to read with the fast pacing for which the author has come to be known. Blowback features numerous exotic locations; from Switzerland to Saudi Arabia, counter-intelligence specialist Harvath must race against the clock to try to once again save America. Adding intrigue to the story are the historical elements involving the Ottoman Empire and Hannibals trek across the Alps.

    The book features an ambitions female senator who desires to take down President Rutledge - a recurring character - by using an international incident from the Middle East involving Harvath.

    There is no doubt that the imagination must be stretched a bit sometimes when reading one or all of the novels in this series. That is why it is called fiction; however. I recommend suspending any disbelief and enjoying the fast paced ride and good storyline that Blowback delivers. Enjoy this 4-star read!

    The books in this series are:

    The Lions of Lucerne
    Path of the Assassin: A Thriller
    The Last Patriot: A Thriller
    State of the Union: A Thriller
    Blowback: A Thriller
    Takedown: A Thriller
    The First Commandment: A Thriller
    ...more info
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • 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
  • Blowback
    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
  • B+
    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.

    ...more info
  • Ripped from the headlines.
    Brad Thor's "Blowback" is an action-packed spy thriller about the complex world of international terrorism, biological warfare, religious fanaticism, and political corruption. The macho hero is Scot Harvath, a former SEAL who works for the Office of International Investigative Assistance in the Department of Homeland Security. He has repeatedly sacrificed his personal happiness and peace of mind in order to serve his country. Scott's archenemy is Khalid Sheik Alomari, a high-ranking al-Qaeda operative and ruthless assassin. Alomari has been traveling around the world killing Muslim scientists who may have unlocked the key to a devastating super weapon.

    This scenario plays out against the background of a vicious power struggle between an ambitious Democratic senator named Helen Carmichael and Republican President Jack Rutledge. Carmichael will do anything to unseat the popular president, and she has been secretly compiling damaging information about Rutledge in order to turn public opinion against him. Scott Harvath soon becomes Carmichael's pawn in her scheme to destroy President Rutledge.

    "Blowback" is timely story that is "ripped from the headlines," with references to people and organizations that we read about in the news every day. Brad Thor provides well-researched and detailed background information about the Muslim world, and he explores the many ways in which the United States is battling the terrorist threat posed by radical fundamentalists. Scot Harvath's courage, knowledge of weaponry, and unerring instincts make him a worthy and appealing hero, and for a change, the author doesn't provide his protagonist with a love interest to distract him from his duties. Although Scot does have a beautiful and brainy partner, a molecular biologist named Dr. Jillian Alcott, his relationship with her is strictly platonic. Jillian provides the scientific expertise that Scot needs in order to fight a terrifying biological weapon that may soon be unleashed against the United States.

    At over four hundred pages, this novel is a bit too long. However, Thor keeps the narrative from dragging by shifting rapidly between characters in far-flung locales, such as France, England, Cyprus, Switzerland, Saudi Arabia, and Washington, D. C. You may need a scorecard to keep tabs on who is doing what to whom and why. However, "Blowback" packs an undeniable wallop, especially in light of the very real dangers that we face in today's frightening and unpredictable world....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
    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
  • Very Realistic, Maybe Too Real For Some
    Presidential security operative Scott Harvath is faced with a biological threat from Muslim terrorists along with a homeland threat from a female U-S Senator. Harvath uses his CIA background and contacts along with Navy SEAL training to outwit and outmuscle the "bad guys" and gal. What makes this fast moving summer read so scary and realistic is that the possible use of a two thousand year old biological poison in the USA by terrorists is all too real, especially following recent incidents. Author Brad Thor provides convincing scientific data through character dialogue on how easy this biowarfare threat could be used in the modern world. Read the book to find out what this poison is and be prepared to be scared! ...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
  • Another good book, good price
    First book I have read by this author. I liked it and will try other books by him....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
  • I recommend the hole series!
    I have read the hole series and love them! I recommend starting with The Lions of Lucerne!...more info
  • Great , fast paced Thriller!

    Function: noun
    : 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
  • Very Poor Writing
    Not even close to Vince Flynn, similar character and plot, but poor writing makes Flynns books look even better...more info