Saturday, September 3, 2016

Book review: Locked On - Tom Clancy and Mark Greaney

Title: Locked On

Author: Tom Clancy with Mark Greaney


Genre: Thriller. 

Star rating: 6.5 out of 10.0

Buy: Maybe

Borrow: Yes

Summary: Locked On is one of many in the Jack Ryan series. As the review on Amazon says: "Though his father had been reluctant to become a heroic field operative, Jack Ryan, Jr. wants nothing more… Privately training with special forces, he’s honing his combat skills to continue his work within the Campus, hunting down and eliminating terrorists wherever he can—even as Jack Ryan, Sr. campaigns to become President of the United States again."

Jack is part of a small clandestine team “The Campus” working on behalf of the US government.  His team’s adventures range across Europe and the Middle East, including Pakistan. The context is today’s Islamic terrorism.

Main review: 

The book is fairly large at 713 pages and is not as fast paced as one would expect, the plot is reasonably complex and although there are many characters, all germane to the story line. 

There are two major strands: the exploits of Jack’s team and the plotting of the Pakistani general who is, in fact, a megalomaniac pretending to be an Islamist.

The latter manages to hijack two nuclear heads from the former Soviet Union with the help of Dagestan insurgents and appears to be targeting locations in Russia. But in fact only one is mounted on a rocket head and the other has been squirrelled away in Pakistan.

In the meantime, John Clark, another member of The Campus has been fingered by the current president’s team as a means of discrediting Jack Sr as John had been pardoned by Jack Sr for some past dubious work. John goes on the run, but when the chips are down is invited to lead the rescue when the US locates the missing nuclear head and effects a last minute recovery.

A good read, but not amongst Clancy’s best. Perhaps the series has gone on for too long.

Further reading suggestion: The Hunt for Red October -

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