Tag Archives: spy thriller

Cold Star: The Cold War Just Got Hotter by Dick Woodgate Review

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own. 

An anonymous secret agent in 1960’s Casablanca must deal with danger, a deadly conspiracy, and heated romance in author Dick Woodgate’s espionage thriller, “Cold Star”. 

The Synopsis

An audacious plan, a dangerous attraction, a deadly agent …a fatal flaw.

The Agent is an anonymous British intelligence agent working for a department so secret the government won’t admit to its existence. In 1960s Casablanca, a devastating fire at the port leads the Agent to Morocco where he uncovers an audacious plot of epic proportions. The Agent must unravel the conspiracy and put a stop to it. The Russian embassy is implicated – and the Agent’s just fallen for one of its diplomats, a beautiful young woman who may hold the key to unearthing the secret in the Sahara… but only if he can overcome his desire for her. And all the while a fatal flaw in the Agent’s assignment goes unnoticed until its explosive revelation in the closing chapters.

The Agent takes you on a thrilling and immersive ride through the heady exoticism of early sixties Casablanca in a compelling cold war era thriller, weaving in science and buckling the classic espionage premise with a twisted finale. Readers of Fleming and le Carré will particularly enjoy this intriguing story, full of narrow escapes and wonderful characters. Brimming with style, detail and atmosphere, Cold Star confidently evokes the period with great historical authenticity. The cold war just got hotter.

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The Review

This was an incredible espionage read. The atmosphere and tone the author employed here very much captured the era of the narrative’s setting. The iconic spy thriller style novel presented both political and action thriller vibes, and the imagery the author used in the writing, from the powerful sports cars the Agent utilized in his adventures to the trickery and air of tension that the protagonist had with other key figures in the novel, really did an amazing job of crafting this fictional world in the reader’s minds.

The characters themselves really brought the novel’s heart into play here. The protagonist himself being this anonymous secret spy known only as The Agent was an inspired choice, as he represented the classic literary characters (and film) such as James Bond that readers have come to know and love over the years while allowing enough room for imagination in the reader’s minds to take over and craft a wholly original and unique experience. The ruthless and almost cold nature of the character’s actions gave such an interesting psychological aspect to his development as well, as he worked to do the “heroic” thing while still struggling to find the meaning and humanity behind his actions. 

The Verdict

A masterfully executed, creative, and engaging spy thriller, author Dick Woodgate’s “Cold Star” is a must-read novel of 2021. The author’s balance of imagery and character growth will have readers harkening back to an iconic time in espionage thriller novels, while the plot and tone will keep readers on the edge of their seat as the shocking finale explodes onto the page. If you haven’t yet, be sure to grab your copy today!

Rating: 10/10

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About the Author

As well as being a writer, I’m also a furniture maker. I moved from London to rural Kent seven years ago to start a family. The skies are dark down here. I bought a telescope soon after we moved and it was this – and a love of espionage fiction, Fleming in particular – which led me to start writing my first novel, Cold Star.

Cold Star is the first book featuring the Agent in a planned series charting the race to the moon in the sixties. A sense of that pioneering decade of space exploration is expressed in parallel with the plot and theme of each book – I’m nearing completion of the second book, set later on in the decade in Europe, Russia & California. I hope you’ll enjoy reading it as much as I have writing it for you. 

https://www.dickwoodgate.com/

https://www.facebook.com/dickwoodgate

Blood of Kings, Power – Perversity – Redemption by Patrick Norton

An international race against time explodes onto the pages of an original illustrated thriller in author Patrick Norton’s book, Blood of Kings, Power – Perversity – Redemption. Here’s the official synopsis:

A thrilling story with an underlying humanistic message

In times past, the kings exercised power and dominion over their people. Thus, absolute monarchy controlled the destinies of the world for many centuries. At present, although there are still a few Royal Houses, the real power is exercised by the moguls, owners of the largest transnational companies, whose wealth exceeds any estimate. While the world is increasingly threatened by economic crises, terrorism, war, hunger, unemployment and poverty, they, unofficially, control the governments, because they are owners of almost everything, in all areas of the world economy. In Blood of Kings, Power – Perversity – Redemption, develops a tale of intrigue, suspense, action and adventure. A series of murders in different parts of the world has bewildered the authorities. No one knows what is happening, but someone is murdering magnates-billionaires. This series of crimes has led to a destabilization in the world economy, while the authorities still have no leads, and the murders continue to occur despite the high level of protection of the victims.

John Garrett, the only son of the first tycoon murdered, has in his possession “the key,” a high-tech electronic device that must be delivered in Paris, according to instructions that his father gave him before he died. The delivery is frustrated and he reaches an impasse. Motivated by the murder of his father, he decides to launch his own investigation. Who killed him? Why? What is this “key” for? ¿Why is it so important? To find the answers, he will have to go on a long and dangerous journey that will take him to many places in the world: Paris, Roussillon, Rome, New Orleans, Seattle, French Polynesia and Sweden, among others. Along this way, he will get to know Laura Koffmann, a daughter of one of the victims. The two will join forces to get the answers, even at the risk of their own lives. They will find many unexpected things and understand that nothing is what it seems; and that the future of the world will depend on their decisions, as well as the success of their actions.

This novel is profusely illustrated with 1,254 original illustrations in high quality 3D digital art that recreate the settings, characters and events narrated in the story. To show the full-screen images, the book is published in the format of a fixed-layout KF8, with vertical text and horizontal illustrations.

The novel is an incredible action thriller, filled with a unique story about secret organizations, murder and a race against the clock to change the world before it’s too late. Filled with action, romance and espionage, this was a fun read. Don’t let the page count fool you, the story was fast paced and flowed quickly, and featured an incredibly unique story telling device with the inclusion of original animated illustrations. The story was powerful and truly original to the genre, and a lot of fun to see flow off the pages.

The only small critique I have is the dialogue sometimes doesn’t flow organically at certain points, and I’d encourage the author to read through the exchanges between characters and make sure the conversations flow smoothly. Otherwise the story was well written and the international espionage world built by the author was incredibly rich and held vivid imagery that readers will not soon forget.

Overall this was a fun read that fans of the thriller genre will thoroughly enjoy. Filled with fully developed and complex characters, shocking twists and a complicated world where no one can be trusted, this was a great read that I highly recommend readers try out for themselves. If you haven’t yet be sure to pick up your copies of Blood of Kings, Power – Perversity – Redemption by Patrick Norton today!

 

COVER+ILLUSTRATIONS+PAGES

Rating: 7/10

Author’s website: http://www.patricknortonbooks.com

Amazon.com: http://goo.gl/9nRPu4

Exodus ’95 by Kfir Luzzatto | REVIEW

Biblical stories blend with international espionage and high-stakes spy thrillers in author Kfir Luzzatto’s Exodus ’95. Here is the synopsis:

Claire, a young graphic designer, learns a secret that her dying New York neighbor has kept for twenty years: the whereabouts of Moses’ Biblical staff.

Claire needs the help of an Israeli engineer and the money of a Russian oligarch to recover the staff before her body betrays her. But first she needs to stay alive in a race with fanatics, who will do anything to keep the staff from coming to light.

Then the LORD said to Moses: Raise your staff and stretch out your hand over the sea to divide the water so that the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground.

While I’m not the kind of reader or reviewer who gravitates towards religious based books, this book actually does a great job of making the story of Moses and his staff more of a driving force for the main plot of the book. The story is rather focused on the story of Claire and her harrowing journey across the world. Thrust into a high stakes game between two powerful and deadly enemies, Claire seeks the help of an Israeli engineer with a special skill set to help her along the way, and there is a surprising twist halfway through the story that will leave readers floored.

The novel was well written, with little to no grammatical errors that I could spot. The story has a great narrative that takes the readers across the world and into the past. Be ready to explore the way the world ran back in the 90’s, and see the political landscape between nations and those who run the countries amongst the shadows. It’s a wonderfully high-octane adventure where no one is loyal and everyone is in danger. With no one to trust, Claire and her confidant must traverse foreign lands and seek allies in order to survive a truly deadly adventure.

Overall this is a wonderful read. The author as a great command over the thriller genre and has created some fantastic characters that make you really feel. The line between hero and villain can easily blur in this story, and soon you will be questioning whether the person closest to you is really on your side. An edge of your seat espionage thriller, this is a fun and adventurous read that everyone should sink their teeth into, so be sure to pick up your copies of Exodus ’95 today!

Score: 9/10

Book Link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B06WWG6LYL/ref=x_gr_w_glide_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_glide_bb-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B06WWG6LYL&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2

The Sweet Oil of Vitriol by Daniel Eagleton Review

Soldier. Liability. Assassin.

These are the identities of Thomas, a Mossad Agent who finds himself on a brutal and secretive journey filled with action, death and intrigue in
author Daniel Eagleton’s novel, The Sweet Oil of Vitriol. Here is the synopsis:

Ever get the feeling the staff want to kill you?

After a government sanctioned hit goes spectacularly wrong, Mossad agent Thomas is blamed for the mission’s failure by his superiors, ousted before completing his very first job. Desperate to prove himself, Thomas accepts an offer from his former handler, Yakov, to assassinate Jacob Okonjo, the head of the African Union. It seems Jacob is allowing certain parties to control Africa’s lucrative diamond trade, and in doing so has made some powerful enemies. But like that Mossad hit-team caught on camera in Dubi a few years back, how is Thomas supposed to terminate such a prominent figure without being caught on CCTV? The answer: to work undercover as a room-service waiter at a top London hotel, where, in a few months’ time, Jacob Okonjo will be staying. It’s the perfect plan. Jacob is to be administered an untraceable poison, and afterwards, even if there is an investigation, a trusted member of staff like Thomas will be above suspicion. That’s the idea, anyway. In the meantime, he’s to suffer month after month of boring, menial employment, serving rich, famous people dinner, when he should be making a name for himself amongst the intelligence community. Because you can bet this never happened to Bond or Bourne. Never had to work for tips, subjugating themselves like some average, everyday citizen…

This story is full of espionage thriller action, brimming with lots of death and destruction as Thomas navigates the world after he’s been stripped
of his government duties. Without a purpose, Thomas flings himself into the world of a mercenary and assassin, determined to prove his worth and
his talents as an agent to not only his former superiors, but to himself. Yet his confidence and his inability to find a healthy relationship could
spell his downfall.

The book was well written, delving into the mind of a man in search of a purpose, and the desperate lengths he will go to to achieve his goals. It’s
filled with deceit, murder and room service as Thomas navigates the complicated world of a hotel worker. The suspense and tension between the characters
in the book was thick enough to cut with a knife, and lent to the story immensely. The characters were the highlight of this fun and entertaining
spy thriller, as you got to see that Thomas, the spy and assassin, isn’t always the one you can’t trust in this story, and everyone has secrets
to hide. You just have to know where to look.

Overall this was a fantastic read. While I’d love to see more of Thomas’s backstory in a future story, I think this was a great introduction into a
new series in the thriller genre, and I hope you guys will go check it out. Filled with suspense, action and a whole lot of mayhem, this is a
series you don’t want to miss as author Daniel Eagleton masterfully brings a unique tale that skirts the lines of spies like Bond and Bourne, but
brings a unique look at the psyche behind that spy. Overall I give The Sweet Oil of Vitriol an 8/10 score, and I hope you guys will go pick up
your copies today!

Rating: 8/10

Book Link: https://www.amazon.com/Sweet-Oil-Vitriol-Glaze-Book-ebook/dp/B06X9BPTDB/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1511231807&sr=8-1&keywords=the+sweet+oil+of+vitriol