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I have been so excited to read this intriguing thriller. It comes from author Tom Marcus who has only written 3 books but has received praise from each.
Marcus is a former member of MI5 and uses his experiences as inspiration for his books. As he still conducts work for the secret service, his identity remains hidden to ensure his safety.
I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started this book. The write up about it didn’t give much away but it surrounded a topic I find incredibly interesting and I was eager to see what dimension could be brought to it with Marcus having real life experiences of MI5.
The opening prologue gave nothing away and left you feeling more baffled as to how this story was going to develop. It certainly kept me reading and I thought the lines; “Standing in the doorway of my flat, I take one last look. It is clean and orderly, the home of a righteous man. And yet, beneath the surface, I know it could be defiled” were quite an ambiguous indication of the journey the reader is about to embark on.
I thought the final lines of the chapter were quite a bold move from Marcus. Without giving away any spoilers, the story focuses on terrorism in the UK (specifically Birmingham, interestingly, which is where I am from) and the hint at deceptiveness with the idea of evil people not only right under our noses, but also in positions of trust, was a sensitive thread to pull at. Albeit, a truthful one and is refreshing to see someone acknowledging this rather than shy away from it.
As the first chapter unfolds, we are introduced to the main character who is certainly relatable, as he struggles with the balance between family life and an ultra-demanding job. A devastating event (which did take me by surprise when I read it, as you don’t see it coming.) makes him re-evaluate things and takes him on an unexpected journey with shocking outcomes.
I found the story gripping and fast moving. There is nothing worse than reading a book which gives excessive unnecessary details and takes forever to get to the essential events. This story was definitely not guilty of that and I found the rapid chain of incidents kept me reading and I finished the book in record time. At times, there was a lot of technical language and possibly an over emphasis on the detail which might be difficult to comprehend as a ‘civilian’ but overall, I thought this was incredibly well written.
I particularly liked Marcus’ writing at emotional parts of the story and you could really picture yourself in that situation and feeling those emotions; ‘I can’t focus. Details move in and out, like someone is adjusting a camera lens
‘[Marcus, Tom. Capture or Kill: An Action-packed Thriller From Former MI5 Agent And Bestselling Author Of Soldier Spy (Matt Logan Book 1) (pp. 58-59). Pan Macmillan. Kindle Edition.]
I would definitely recommend this and would be interested to hear views from others that have read this. In particular, the racial undertones and the way in which the book address terrorism and radicalism.