2 out of 4 stars
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Devil Among Us by Jack Winnick is the second in the Lara and Uri series and another decent read by an author who features turmoil in the Middle East. I am rating this book 2 out of 4 stars. The book had a fair number of errors missed in editing that at times drew the reader's attention away from the adventure at hand. Also, the strong underlying plot is watered down by unnecessary storylines and details that don't bring any real value to the reader.
This book is the second in a series, and I found it easy to pick up and read without a loss in understanding from not having read book one. As with all Jack Winnick novels, the story starts with a bang in the first few pages and sets the stage for a winding journey where Winnick gradually introduces players that seem unrelated at first but unravel nicely as part of the plot.
This book focused heavily on the Middle Eastern region and was a great way to learn more about the countries that make up the area. I have to admit that having a map in the book would have been helpful, though. I enjoyed how this story went deep into the alliances between Middle Eastern nations and explored some of the more significant supporting players, like Syria and Egypt, in the fight against Israel.
Towards the latter section of the story, I began to struggle with following the narrative of simultaneous battle scenes unfolding. Winnick introduced many generals with intricate Middle Eastern names within a few pages of each other, which made it a challenge to keep up with who was doing what, where, and when. Winnick lost me as a reader for several pages as I tried to work through the plot without fully being able to recognize where the scene was unfolding and who was involved.
This book had bouts of violence and focused very heavily on the different types of armaments involved in wartime efforts. Winnick showed his in-depth knowledge of fighter jets, missiles, and guns. As someone who is not intimately familiar with weaponry of any kind, I feel like I was able to beef up my knowledge of the differences between an F-16 and F-35.
Overall this story has a strong underlying plot but can sometimes trail too far with frivolous details. There is potential, but the execution just wasn't there. I also personally enjoy the Lara and Uri story and wish those main characters had a bit more page time together.
Devil Among Us
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