RogerBW's Blog

Fatal Thunder, Larry Bond and Chris Carlson 19 April 2021

2016 technothriller. As China and the rest of Asia recover from the war in the previous book, an Indian conspiracy plans to shift the stalemate in Kashmir.

All right, Shattered Trident was clearly the Big War Story of this series, and while this book involves a large naval operation it's mostly restricted in viewpoint, something like The Hunt for Red October in scope. It's clearly a story of two parts: naval-related conspiracy as a couple of patriots work out what's going wrong and try to get the information to someone who can do something with it, then naval action as things go wrong and a submarine has to be hunted down.

Part of the problem is that Jerry Mitchell, series hero, is involved in the first part (because these foreign naval chaps just have so much respect for him) as well as the second part where he's got an actual job to do as the world's best submarine captain. He's had too much happening in his life, having now been involved in three previous very secret operations that had global consequences as well as the war; it's too obviously a heroic fantasy, even if one can assume some never-mentioned periods of boring routine operations in between the exciting stuff, and Mitchell is not only perfect in every way, everyone who's ever met him recognises it.

The other characters, while lightly sketched, are rather more interesting, particularly some of the high-ups in the conspiracy; this is more work than many authors bother to put into their villains.

There's enjoyment to be had out of this, especially in the second half, but there isn't much spark to it.

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See also:
Exit Plan, Larry Bond and Chris Carlson

Previous in series: Shattered Trident | Series: Jerry Mitchell | Next in series: Arctic Gambit

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