Tuesday, August 06, 2019

A war story to rival the best of Tom Clancy

Red MetalRed Metal by Mark Greaney
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Red Metal is one of the most entertaining books I've read in quite some time. If you're not interested in reading about battles, then it's not for you, but if you like books like Tom Clancy's better works from his early days, such as The Hunt for Red October or Red Storm Rising, then you'll like this. In fact, speaking of Red Storm Rising, I'd even say Red Metal is similar but an even better novel. The battle and technical details are on par with that book, and the plot moves even better, with a more satisfying conclusion, even though it also creates a bit of a cliffhanger.

I've had mixed feelings about Mark Greaney's prior work. Some I've liked a lot while others were just okay, but this hits it out of the park. I'm really anxious to see what comes next! One thing I found amusing is the prominence of Lieutenant Colonels in this novel, considering that Mr. Greaney's co-author is one. The US Marines also take a lead role here, but I couldn't help but notice the importance that particular rank played in the different theaters of operation. I will also give them credit for having respect for members of the service from other countries. Too many novels of this genre treat allies and enemies like their armed forces are comprised of cowardly idiots. Here, there's respect for the skills and sacrifices of fighting men and women in general, and that's something I was very happy to see.

This really is a terrific novel, and even at roughly 650 pages, I tore through it in no time, doing all the things I shouldn't, like staying up way too late to see what happens next. Well done, gentlemen!

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