#BlogTour ~ The Janitor and The Spy (The Thornhill Series #1) by S. W. Ellenwood #Espionage #Spies @rararesources @swellenwood

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for The Janitor and The Spy, courtesy of Rachels Random Resources.

My Review

Thomas Thornhill has been sent to Amsterdam by his handler, in the guise of an international businessman. It’s his first spy mission and his objective is to meet with Nils Golay, possibly an employee of the NSA, and check out his findings about large sums of money finding their way to communist groups across the world.

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A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan ~ #HistFic #Crime with a supernatural thread @WilliamRyan_ @BonnierZaffre #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: W.C. Ryan

Published: October 2018 by Zaffre

Category: Historical Fiction, Murder, Crime, Mystery, Espionage, Supernatural, Book Review

Winter 1917. As the First World War enters its most brutal phase, back home in England, everyone is seeking answers to the darkness that has seeped into their lives.

At Blackwater Abbey, on an island off the Devon coast, Lord Highmount has arranged a spiritualist gathering to contact his two sons who were lost in the conflict. But as his guests begin to arrive, it gradually becomes clear that each has something they would rather keep hidden. Then, when a storm descends on the island, the guests will find themselves trapped. Soon one of their number will die.

A House of Ghosts is primarily a tale of espionage during the height of WW1, with a dark and atmospheric supernatural thread.

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Assassins Retribution (The English Spy Mysteries #3) by @RachelAmphlett #Espionage #Thriller #TuesdayBookBlog

Author: Rachel Amphlett

Published: January 2018 by Saxon Publishing

Category: Espionage, Spy, Mystery, Thriller, Book Review

The net is closing in on Eva and her team, now on the warpath and seeking revenge.

Old alliances are tested, new enemies are exposed, and somehow Eva has to stop a madman unleashing a weapon of terrifying consequences upon an unsuspecting population.

The clock is ticking…

This final instalment in The English Spy Mysteries is a race to the finish. Eva, Nathan and Decker have some unexpected help in their quest to stop a madman inflicting devastation upon the world. They know what they have to do, they just need to work out how to do it without getting themselves killed.

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Assassins Vengeance (English Spy Mysteries Book Two) by @RachelAmphlett #Espionage #SpyMystery

Author: Rachel Amphlett

Published: January 2018 by Saxon Publishing

Category: Espionage, Spy, Mystery, Thriller, Book Review

Eva and her fractured team are on the run, desperate to find answers and uncover who has betrayed them from within the shadowy government organisation known only as the Section.

Evading assassination in Berlin and Prague, Eva has had time to regroup and try to solve the mystery behind the attempts on her life.

Continuing straight on from Assassins Hunted, Eva, Decker, Nathan and Alex are on the run, but they’re being outmanoeuvred by their enemies, who will stop at nothing – torturing and murdering anyone who stands in their way. Despite this, there’s still everything to play for as Eva and her friends become accountable for another addition to their little group.

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Assassins Hunted (English Spy Mysteries Book 1) by @RachelAmphlett #Espionage #SpyThriller

Author: Rachel Amphlett

Published: January 2018 by Saxon Publishing

Category: Spy Thriller, Mystery, Espionage, Book Review

Eva Delacourt has been in hiding for three years after her fiancé was assassinated in cold blood outside the British embassy in Prague.

She thought she was safe.

But someone in the mysterious Section has betrayed her, and now she’s on the run for her life, sworn to protect the six-year-old boy she adores.

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Fire and Forget ~ A Thomas Caine #Thriller by Andrew Warren #Spotlight #Excerpt @aawarren71

I’m delighted to be showcasing Fire and Forget, the latest book in the popular spy thriller Thomas Caine series. Before the extract, here’s a little about the book.

A betrayed assassin. A bloodthirsty warlord. Millions of lives hang in the balance…

Thomas Caine is a wanted man.

With the help of a beautiful doctor, Caine links the deadly virus to a sadistic rebel leader he was once ordered to protect. This time, the assassin is determined to do what he should have done years ago… cut off the snake’s head! In the heart of South Sudan’s brutal civil war, Caine’s mission uncovers shocking secrets that could solve the mystery of his betrayal, and expose the men who set him up. Assuming he makes it back alive…
Fire and Forget is the standalone third book in the pulse-pounding Thomas Caine series, a set of international thriller novels. If you like blockbuster-worthy action, edge-of-your-seat suspense, and globetrotting heroes, then you’ll love the latest installment in Andrew Warren’s super-charged series.

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Codename Lazarus (The Spy Who Came Back from the Dead) by A.P. Martin #TuesdayBookBlog #RBRT #HistFic

  • Author: A.P. Martin
  • Published: July 2016 by Troubador
  • Category: Historical Fiction, WWII

Spring 1938: Great Britain is facing potentially lethal threats: the looming war with Germany; the fear that her Secret Service has been penetrated by Nazi agents and the existence of hundreds of British citizens, who are keen to pass information to her enemies.

Codename Lazarus is taken from a true story and set in pre World War II Britain and Germany. It’s John King’s last day of an eighteen month research stay in Heidelberg. Although he will be sorry to leave his friends, the threatening climate in Germany, the increase in Hitler’s dictatorship and the ensuing violence against Jews only disgusts and horrifies, somewhat neutralising the sadness at leaving. 

The young SS officer and the rangy, fair-haired man looked equally shocked and baffled that things between them could have come to this. As the German picked himself tentatively from the floor, trying in vain to maintain what dignity he could, the Englishman was taken in the unforgiving grip of two SS soldiers. Briefly their eyes met, full of sadness and incomprehension, for they both knew instinctively that this would change everything.

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The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan #Classic #Espionage #Audiobook

  • Author: John Buchan
  • Performed by Robert Powell
  • Released:  September 2007 by Audible Studios
  • Category: British Literature, Spy, Espionage

When Richard Hannay offered sanctuary to the man he found on his doorstep, he took the first step on a trail of peril, murder, and espionage.

I first read this book years ago and enjoyed it, so when I saw an Audible edition at just under four hours long I decided it was time to revisit this classic. This adaptation stays true to the original as far as I remember, unlike the films. Although the language is obviously dated by today’s standards, the writing is good and it’s still enjoyable for what it is, a good spy story of its time.  Continue reading

The Violin Man’s Legacy (Jack Calder #1)

  • TheViolinMan'sLegacyAuthor: Seumas Gallacher
  • Published: October 2012 by Seumas Gallacher
  • Category: Crime/Thriller/Suspense, Espionage
  • four-half-stars

Thriller with bloody twists and turns as ruthless killers meet their match in a former SAS hit squad….The trail of death and mayhem coils across Europe, Hong Kong and South America until all the scores are settled.

Immediately likeable and genuine, the main protagonist Jack Calder is ex SAS who now works, with a team of former colleagues, for ISP, an international security company run by their former commander, Jules Townsend. Their task is to investigate deadly robberies involving shipments of precious gems from a Dutch diamond merchant. It gets personal for Jack when a friend and former comrade is a victim of the first attack. 

Roddie Bell heard the shouts and his instinctive reaction kicked into overdrive. He sprinted towards the ongoing heist, drawing the gun from his side holster. He hardly had a chance to get it out. Two of the gunmen blasted at him, ripping out his throat and lower stomach. He was dead before his body hit the stone floor.

It’s soon apparent to Jack these are extremely well organised and executed raids. The resulting investigations in Amsterdam lead the team to the ISP headquarters in Hong Kong and much to Jack’s delight, the chief of that division is the beautiful May-Ling. The evidence they uncover points to a powerful organised crime ring based in Hong Kong and masterminded by the callous and powerful ‘Half Moon Twins’ twins, Jimmie and Jonnie Chan. Their corrupt network reaches far and wide, across Europe, Hong Kong and South America.

There’s a lot of interesting information and details about the Triad gangs and the process of shipping gems. The security team take no prisoners and get the job done with their own brand of justice and morality. I don’t know how true to life that aspect is but it’s certainly very conceivable. Jack and his team bring expertise to the job from their years as professional soldiers with the Special Air Service. I love the comradeship they share and the way they interact with each other. It brings a lot to a well thought out and plotted story.

All the characters are well written and Jack’s heartbreaking back story gives him extra dimension and is the catalyst that sets him on his career path. The location descriptions are rich and evocative, the action virtually non stop, beginning immediately with a Triad execution and an attack on armoured vehicles carrying gold bullion which is vicious but highlights how ruthless the bad guys are. The pace is good and escalates a lot in the second half of the book with the heightening of the action. I like that everything ties up neatly at the end and all the bad guys get their due.

About the author

SeumasSEUMAS GALLACHER escaped from the world of finance five years ago, after a career spanning three continents and five decades. 

As the self-professed ‘oldest computer Jurassic on the planet’ his headlong immersion into the dizzy world of eBook publishing opened his eyes, mind, and pleasure to the joys of self-publishing. As a former businessman, he rapidly understood the concept of a writer’s need to ‘build the platform’, and from a standing start began to develop a social networking outreach, which now tops 15,000 direct contacts. 

His first two crime-thrillers, THE VIOLIN MAN’S LEGACY and VENGEANCE WEARS BLACK blew his mind with more than 75,000 e-link downloads to date. The third in what has become the ‘Jack Calder’ series, SAVAGE PAYBACK, was launched late 2013. The fourth, KILLER CITY is his current work-in-progress.

He started a humorous, informative, self-publishers blog less than two years ago, never having heard of a ‘blog’ prior to that, was voted ‘Blogger of the Year 2013’ and now has a loyal blog following on his networks. He says the novels contain his ‘Author’s Voice’, while the blog carries his ‘Author’s Brand’. And he’s LUVVIN IT!

Seumas can also be found on Facebook and Twitter

Book links ~ Amazon UK Amazon US

The Jet Series

AudiobookReview

  • JetAuthor: Russell Blake
  • Performed by Braden Wright
  • Published: Janda Management and released June 2013 on Audible
  • Category: Crime/Thriller, Espionage
  • four-stars

Twenty-eight-year-old Jet was once the Mossad’s most lethal operative before faking her own death and burying that identity forever. But the past doesn’t give up on its secrets easily. 

When her new life on a tranquil island is shattered by a brutal attack, Jet must return to a clandestine existence of savagery and deception to save herself and those she loves. A gritty, unflinching roller-coaster of high-stakes twists and shocking turns, JET features a new breed of protagonist that breaks the mold.

Jet is a protagonist with a difference, a deadly but complex personality who has suffered one of the worst experiences. She has intellect and depth of character and, as a trained operative is adept with all manner of weaponry, not to mention hand to hand combat. In her past as a covert special agent for Mossad she fought terrorism and corruption and, after faking her own death, hoped that part of her life could be laid to rest. But someone knows she is still alive. Someone who has very close and personal links to a past assassination and wants revenge at any cost.

As she shouldered through the hanging beads that separated the back from the storefront, a garrote looped over her head and she barely got her left hand up in time to keep it from closing around her throat…….Ignoring the pain from the garrote she stabbed behind her head with the jagged edge of the broken bottle, again and again, then heard a muted exclamation as a warm gush sprayed against her upper back.

The story opens with an assassination attempt that draws Jet back into her old life and there is really only one person who can help her. Her former lover, David. Travelling to various exotic, and not so exotic, locales in several countries, they try to work out who wants Jet dead, and why, whilst trying to stay ahead of the villains. Plenty of action, clear and colourful depictions of weapons and fighting scenes which paint a vivid picture of operatives in combat, living on the edge and never quite knowing where, or when, the next attack will occur.

Jet’s backstory is filled in with flashback chapters which add to the overall picture and the connection to the character. Russell Blake’s excellent and very descriptive writing is fascinating, solid and flows seemingly effortlessly, dropping the reader (or listener) right in the middle of the story, which is completely over the top and sheer escapism but that’s what makes it such a fun and enjoyable experience. A surprise twist at the end means I have to get Jet #2!

  • Jet ~ Betrayal (Jet #2)
  • four-stars

Jet2Twenty-eight year old Jet, the former Mossad operative from the eponymous novel JET, must battle insurmountable odds to protect those she loves in a deadly race that stretches from the heartland of Nebraska to the corridors of power in Washington, D.C., from the lurid streets of Bangkok to the deadly jungles of Laos and Myanmar. 

Possible spoilers

Jet is coerced by a prominent CIA operative into agreeing to assassinate former member, Matt Hawker, who absconded with a fortune in diamonds. The previous attempts failed and if Jet wants to see her daughter again she must succeed.

The only jarring note in the story is the way Jet spirits her daughter away from the adoptive parents. At two years old Hannah would be aware that Jet is a stranger and would, I imagine, want the people she thinks of as her parents. But that aside, it’s another wild and entertaining ride with Jet, the super heroine, taking on all comers with an assortment of weapons and despatching them in good style in her mission for justice and revenge.

Her assignment takes Jet to Thailand, into the worst the country has to offer, where anything and everything available for a price. The descriptions of the sex industry and more especially, child prostitution, is horrifying and hopefully greatly exaggerated. Jet’s search leads her from Thailand to Bangkok and into the dangerous jungles of Myanmar and Laos where she locates her target but finds all is not as she believed. Conspiracies, drug lords and the despicable aspects of humanity all adding to the surprises in the fast-moving plot.

We get to see another side of Jet in this story, softer and more compassionate, especially when dealing with children, and showing more emotion generally. But just when she thinks there’s a second chance at love the unthinkable happens again.

Braden Wright has a nice narrative style and good characterisation and I like Russell Blake’s succinct and descriptive writing very much.

Russell Blake’s books may be purchased through Amazon US and Amazon UK