Hostage Zero

Hostage Zero

Hostage rescue expert Jonathan Grave is used to working alone, and this time he’ll have to go where even the government won’t. An innocent man has been shot and two young people are missing. But tracking them down is just the beginning. To keep them and his covert team alive, Jonathan must plunge into the heart of an ugly secret that reaches into the highest corridors of power – and he must defeat enemies who are willing to kill again and again to keep the truth from being revealed.

A couple of years ago I read John Gilstrap’s first novel No Mercy and loved it. The novel introduced us to a new kind of hero, a hostage negotiator who does little negotiating and more covert rescuing, rescuing people the government can’t or will not attempt to repatriate with their families.

No Mercy was an absolutely thrilling thriller and laid down a terrific foundation for Jonathan Grave’s exploits but Hostage Zero, despite a brilliant premise doesn’t quite live up to his first book in the Grave series. The ending is rushed and although there were a few unexpected moments throughout I always had a feeling I knew how things would play out – there were no edge of the seat defining moments for me which was a shame.

Jonathan Grave is an amazing character and one of my favourite I’ve read over the last few years. He’s cool, reserved, knows what he wants and how to achieve it – either as part of a well-oiled team or on his own. Digger as he is affectionately known to his tight knit unit is certainly back with a bang and when a group of men enter his orphanage called Resurrection House, kidnap a couple of his boys – Jeremy Schuler and Evan Guinn – shooting the caretaker in the process, our protagonist will stop at nothing to get the boys back.

The story moves from location to location –from the wilds of Alaska to the heat and humidity of Colombia – and slowly but surely the stories merge and we make sense of the kidnappings and why the need for a late night raid.

As you would expect from a book of this type there are plenty of explosions, enough killing to satisfy the blood thirsty among us and a few sensitive moments to give a little light and shade. It isn’t all out guns for glory type action, there are some well thought out scenarios and although the dialogue wasn’t as fluent or as powerful as No Mercy it kept the book moving along nicely. The interactions between Boxers and Grave and Harvey and Grave were entertaining to say the least.

Utilising the newest satellite navigation and technology the book moves at a fairly frenetic pace and before you know it the book is over and you’re eagerly anticipating the next adventure in the Grave series. Full of testosterone fuelled encounters, Jonathan Grave isn’t afraid to pull the trigger; I’m certainly looking forward to his next adventure.

Hostage Zero is available in Paperback in the UK.

  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Pinnacle Books,U.S.; 1 edition (4 Aug 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0786020881
  • ISBN-13: 978-0786020881
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