An animated thriller, originally published in the United Kingdom in 2006, that promises ample entertainment for Military...

ULTIMATE WEAPON

Two veterans of the British Special Air Service reluctantly join forces to rescue the beautiful young scientist at the center of their lives.

U.K. bestselling author and former SAS commander Ryan (Firefight, 2008, etc.) taps into his military experience to create riveting action sequences. Unfortunately, the plot can’t support the velocity of Ryan’s writing. His hero is Nick Scott, a disgraced Gulf War veteran broken under torture. After the death of his wife, this defeated soldier hires himself out to protect Algerian oil rigs, sending what money he can to his daughter Sarah, a gifted Cambridge University physicist. Just as he’s arrived home to London in early 2003, he finds that Sarah has disappeared, leaving an unlikely 100,000 pounds in her bank account. Scott’s search is paralleled by the experiences of SAS soldier Jed Bradley, Sarah’s off-again boyfriend. His first mission is to lead a bloody raid on a suspected weapons facility, trying to find WMDs to justify the invasion of Iraq. Following the money in Sarah’s account, Nick discovers an implausible scenario involving his daughter’s invention of a viable cold-fusion method and a sinister cabal of scientists and terrorists who have secreted her away to Baghdad. “You know my daughter’s been kidnapped by Saddam Hussein?” asks Nick in one of several dated references. Against all logic, Nick and Jed are chosen by their government’s intelligence service to lead a hell-for-leather raid on the Republican Palace to save Sarah. Ryan’s continental debut doesn’t match the substance of Andy McNab’s Nick Stone novels, but its breathless pace and frenetic firefights make for an engaging diversion.

An animated thriller, originally published in the United Kingdom in 2006, that promises ample entertainment for Military Channel junkies.

Pub Date: Feb. 3, 2009

ISBN: 978-1-60286-050-6

Page Count: 368

Publisher: Weinstein Books

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2008

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There are unforgettable beauties in this very sexy story.

TELL ME LIES

Passion, friendship, heartbreak, and forgiveness ring true in Lovering's debut, the tale of a young woman's obsession with a man who's "good at being charming."

Long Island native Lucy Albright, starts her freshman year at Baird College in Southern California, intending to study English and journalism and become a travel writer. Stephen DeMarco, an upperclassman, is a political science major who plans to become a lawyer. Soon after they meet, Lucy tells Stephen an intensely personal story about the Unforgivable Thing, a betrayal that turned Lucy against her mother. Stephen pretends to listen to Lucy's painful disclosure, but all his thoughts are about her exposed black bra strap and her nipples pressing against her thin cotton T-shirt. It doesn't take Lucy long to realize Stephen's a "manipulative jerk" and she is "beyond pathetic" in her desire for him, but their lives are now intertwined. Their story takes seven years to unfold, but it's a fast-paced ride through hookups, breakups, and infidelities fueled by alcohol and cocaine and with oodles of sizzling sexual tension. "Lucy was an itch, a song stuck in your head or a movie you need to rewatch or a food you suddenly crave," Stephen says in one of his point-of-view chapters, which alternate with Lucy's. The ending is perfect, as Lucy figures out the dark secret Stephen has kept hidden and learns the difference between lustful addiction and mature love.

There are unforgettable beauties in this very sexy story.

Pub Date: June 12, 2018

ISBN: 978-1-5011-6964-9

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Atria

Review Posted Online: March 20, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 1, 2018

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The phrase “tour de force” could have been invented for this audacious novel.

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A LITTLE LIFE

Four men who meet as college roommates move to New York and spend the next three decades gaining renown in their professions—as an architect, painter, actor and lawyer—and struggling with demons in their intertwined personal lives.

Yanagihara (The People in the Trees, 2013) takes the still-bold leap of writing about characters who don’t share her background; in addition to being male, JB is African-American, Malcolm has a black father and white mother, Willem is white, and “Jude’s race was undetermined”—deserted at birth, he was raised in a monastery and had an unspeakably traumatic childhood that’s revealed slowly over the course of the book. Two of them are gay, one straight and one bisexual. There isn’t a single significant female character, and for a long novel, there isn’t much plot. There aren’t even many markers of what’s happening in the outside world; Jude moves to a loft in SoHo as a young man, but we don’t see the neighborhood change from gritty artists’ enclave to glitzy tourist destination. What we get instead is an intensely interior look at the friends’ psyches and relationships, and it’s utterly enthralling. The four men think about work and creativity and success and failure; they cook for each other, compete with each other and jostle for each other’s affection. JB bases his entire artistic career on painting portraits of his friends, while Malcolm takes care of them by designing their apartments and houses. When Jude, as an adult, is adopted by his favorite Harvard law professor, his friends join him for Thanksgiving in Cambridge every year. And when Willem becomes a movie star, they all bask in his glow. Eventually, the tone darkens and the story narrows to focus on Jude as the pain of his past cuts deep into his carefully constructed life.  

The phrase “tour de force” could have been invented for this audacious novel.

Pub Date: March 10, 2015

ISBN: 978-0-385-53925-8

Page Count: 720

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2015

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