U.S. Marine sniper Kyle Swanson saves the world from terrorism once again in the seventh fast-moving installment of Coughlin’s (Time to Kill, 2013, etc.) Sniper series.
It’s the near future, and a team of international financiers known as the Group of Six is arranging a Muslim takeover of Spain. When a bungled operation results in six dead Marines, Swanson is called in to retaliate, targeting each member of the group in sequence. The stakes get higher with each assassination, as political enemies attempt to break the cover of his secret unit, Task Force Trident. The violence escalates as Swanson reaches the final confrontation with Yanis and Djahid Rebiane, the group’s mastermind and his unhinged son, who carried out the initial bombing. Other obstacles include a corrupt senator and his hapless assistant and a disgraced Navy SEAL who’s become a TV star. The series benefits from a strong female character in Beth Ledford, Swanson’s partner, who is also a deadly sniper. Her moral struggles with the job she does, and her ambiguous nonsexual relationship with Swanson, give the story some necessary human interest. The story is kept politically neutral since the villainous senator isn’t given a political party and the president who appears in a pivotal scene is never identified. But Coughlin’s hero makes short work of anyone, American or Algerian, who stands in the way of an unchecked military. Everyone, that is, except the one terrorist who gets out alive, in time for the series’ next installment.
The outcome is never in doubt, but Coughlin and Davis keep things moving with suspenseful sniper scenes and a little graphic violence, including a truly grisly death by flaying.