4 out of 4 stars
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I rate <i>Devil in False Colors: Lara and Uri book 3</i> by Jack Winnick as <b>4 out of 4 stars</b>. This author does a fantastic job of mixing scenes of action with the thoughts and observations by the characters painting very complete pictures in a short period of time.
This book begins with a cop eating his doughnut and being flagged down by a hysterical woman. They run back across the street to a horrific scene at a preschool in Los Angeles. This hate crime spurs an international anti-terrorism task force. A little career advancement and romance are sprinkled in to make this a well rounded novel.
The two main characters are Lara and Uri. This book can completely stand alone, as I read it, but this is the third book about these two characters and their relationship. Lara and Uri have a solid work relationship of taking down difficult terrorist groups as a partnership between the FBI/JTTF and Israeli Mossad. They also have a steamy romantic past. This book begins after Uri and Lara have spent some time apart, in their own countries. Hearing about the horrific hate crimes happening in LA, they assume they may be asked to work together and they are excited and nervous to see each other again. The reader quickly empathizes with these two full of hopes and nerves, while also completely invested in ending this terrorism.
For some readers it may be a bit confusing to keep track of other countries’ alliances and groups, such as DAESH (ISIS). Likewise, there are religious holidays, and various titles and terms that are unfamiliar for many. Some readers will have this background knowledge, other readers will have to focus a bit more as all the details and knowledge are woven into the story through expert dialog and observations.
It is an interesting technique to see these actions unfold from both sides of the events. This book brings us into the minds of the terrorists and how some are carried along with misgivings but all have crucial details and planning involved. We see their evolving plans as we watch the “good guys” trying to catch up and thwart the plans. The “false flags” by the terrorists add to the intrigue by slowing down the investigation; the adrenaline builds as we hope for the terrorists to be discovered by Lara and Uri.
Suddenly, the excitement ramps up again after all the backstories have been fleshed out and Lara is in extreme danger. The action continues to flip flop with who has the upper hand and which rescuer then needs to be rescued. Thrown into the mix of physical battles is the information of a computer worm ready to be deployed, and fighter jets running low on fuel.
If someone told me I was about to read a book that starts with a horrific slaughter scene at a Jewish preschool, I would have no desire to read the book. But Mr. Winnick’s masterful writing allows this book to start with just such a scene and move onto solving a terrorist plot via hate crimes, and still keep humanity and empathy. The scene is well described but not with extreme gristly detail and more of the focus is on the characters and their reactions. Likewise, there is a little swearing in the book, adding realism to the dialog, but it is not extreme. This book may not be appropriate for younger or more timid readers. While religion is a major theme, it is not prohibitive to the reader.
Devil in False Colors
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