A tense firefight on the Russian-American border heralds the start of a terrifying high-stakes mission for special forces agent Major Rake Ozenna in this gripping espionage thriller.
Instructed to guide in a speed boat crossing from Russia in the Bering Strait, special forces Major Rake Ozenna watches in horror as the operation culminates in a fatal firefight – and the loss of vital intelligence of a deadly new weapon. A weapon of unimaginable power. A weapon that, if it were unleashed, would cripple civilization as we know it. But who sabotaged the mission? Who possesses the weapon – and what is their ultimate goal?
Rake’s search takes him to the remote outpost of Uelen on the Russian coast – and the discovery that he is up against a formidable enemy from his past. As world leaders gather in Bonn for the signing of the new European security treaty, Rake enters a desperate race against time to prevent a catastrophe beyond imagining.
The border between Russia and the United States is only 2.4 miles! The time difference is 21 hours. Rake Ozena is attempting to get a young lady back from Big Diomede Island to Little Diomede Island. A Russian sharp shooter wounds the young lady upon her arrival at Rake’s boat. It makes no sense because the transfer was government authorized!
This blatant break in protocol has both sides mystified. The murder was ordered by a rogue minor official somewhere in the Kremlin. The young woman dies without awakening and the mystery deepens. What vital information was she carrying? Rake and the U.S. Government want to know! Who deserves retaliation for this murder?
Little Diomede Island was a former base utilized by the Soviet Union during the cold war. Radioactive residue is found in the old facility that is not readily identifiable. Neither the Russians nor the Americans can figure out what the compound was used for! The usual finger pointing ensues while Rake and his Russian counterpart try to figure out the truth.
A new weapon seems to be one possibility! Without verification from either the Russians or the Americans, the plot thickens. What was the purpose of the radio-active material and why was it in such a remote location? The two sides work closely together to identify the use of the material. The overall result was a finely written tale of international intrigue and suspense. The conclusion was frightening and enlightening.
I recommend this book to anyone interested in international diplomacy. The policy of “classified information” muddies the waters and spices up the story. Enjoy! 4.5 stars – CE Williams
We received a complimentary review copy of this book from the author and publisher through NetGalley that in no way influenced this review. These are his honest opinions.
Rosepoint Publishing: Four point Five Stars
Genre: Political Thrillers & Suspense, Terrorism Thrillers
Publisher: Severn House
Print Length: 258 pages
Publication Date: June 1, 2021
Source: Publisher and NetGalley
Title Links: Man On Fire [Amazon]
Barnes and Noble
The Author: Humphrey Hawksley’s brand-new international thriller series begins in paperback in October 2019 with MAN ON ICE a knuckle-whitening drama set on the remote and wild US-Russian border. In early, 2020 comes the nail-biting MAN ON EDGE set on the Norway-Russian border followed in 2021 by MAN ON FIRE whose location is yet to disclosed. Rake Ozenna, a native of Little Diomede island in Alaska is the series hero. Each thriller includes trauma surgeon, Dr Carrie Walker, American intelligence contractor, Harry Lucas, and his ex-wife, British businesswoman and diplomat, Stephanie Lucas.
Humphrey’s thrillers have been widely praised. Steve Berry describes ‘authentic settings, non-stop action’ from MAN ON ICE. Lee Child speaks of SECURITY BREACH as ‘high stakes, high octane’ and Alan Furst as a ‘hard-driving, a good taut thriller’ — right back to the first future history thriller DRAGON STRIKE: THE MILLENNIUM WAR which Steve Coonts hailed as ‘ominous and insightful.’
His recent non-fiction ASIAN WATERS: THE STRUGGLE OVER THE INDO_PACIFIC AND THE CHALLENGE TO AMERICAN POWER a has been acclaimed on every continent by those at the heart of global decision-making, such as Indian cabinet minister, Hardeep Puri; the last governor of Hong Kong Baron Lord Patten of Barnes; and Dr Wu Shicun, President of China’s National Institute for South China Sea Studies. China’s rise is a fast developing story, and Humphrey is currently working on an updated edition which is due out in June 2020.
Humphrey’s work as a BBC foreign correspondent has taken him all over the world with postings in Beijing, Hong Kong, Manila, Delhi and Colombo. He has contributed to ABC, National Public Radio and other networks in the United States and global publication of his work includes the Financial Times, New York Times, Yale Global, Nikkei Asian Review and others.
©2021 V Williams