A restless thriller from Whitcomb, returning with many in the appealing cast from his debut, Black (2004).
In this tale of terrorist activities designed to bring down the U.S. government, the threat may come from within, rather than from an infiltrating Islamic group. While on a black operation for the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Team, Jeremy Waller identifies an unexpected Caucasian presence in the midst of Islamic extremists, an albino operative who manages to escape the HRT’s deadly fusillade. Jeremy’s conscience is at play; he isn’t happy about “the lack of oversight and interest. No one seemed to question rule of law in the war on terror.” The terrorists’ acts ratchet up big-time: Huge blasts level Disney World and shopping complexes. The neophyte president refuses to sleep and becomes a zombie; the VP orders his drugging; more bombs destroy the Alaskan pipeline and the entire western power grid. Meanwhile, Jordan Mitchell of the Borders Atlantic company, which designs untraceable cell phones, is working behind the scenes to . . . well, it’s not quite clear what he’s up to. Nor is it clear what crack female agents Sirad and G.I. Jane are up to, but they certainly have quite a time doing it. Whitcomb keeps the action on boil, jumping from principal to principal. He enjoys details, writing of a “stainless-steel Les Baer .45 comp gun…in a DeSantis speed-draw holster,” or “the Nguyen cornerstone or stochastic wave generation theory or Camus algorithms.” The surprising and gratifying aspect of this palaver is that the author explains what it means. And when white supremacists say things like “the Philistines—the gutter gods of Islam—will never rest,” the plausibility factor is covered: The author is an HRT veteran.
Whitcomb adeptly keeps many balls in the air in this artful shell game of suspense.