THE AGENCY – James Phelan

The AgencyI should preface this review by admitting that this is a thriller genre I seldom read. However, I found myself in a situation without a book of my choice and as I had just collected this from my local Post Office, I started reading and found myself drawn into the sheer pace and action, plus the witty, wisecracking dialogue.

I found myself caught up in a good guy/bad guy, kill/or be killed, sex and action maelstrom! So, of course, I had to keep reading…….

Jed Walker, winner of a Purple Heart award and survivor of many potentially fatal incidents during his time as a high ranking air force officer, has now been accepted, after a rigorous selection process, as a rookie CIA operator.

There are attempts on his life, but it is “by foe or by friend” testing his capabilities. Of course there is a also very attractive, feisty female British operator who is with MI5, and who links up with our hero – with the inevitable “romantic” consequences.

Jed is seriously wounded quite early in the proceedings, but carries on nobly despite his injuries. He is also forced to face the uncertainty of whether his British partner, despite their romantic liaison, is to be totally trusted.

(I have to confess I did quite a bit of “skipping” in this book..something of which I am very seldom guilty!) I found the excessive violence and the convoluted plot just too much and the eventual ending rather anti-climactic after all the drama and suspense.

One distracting diversion is the constant use of initials in relation to the various organizations involved. All totally alien to a reader unfamiliar with this genre…..

I am sure fans of espionage thrillers will enjoy this book, but I have not been tempted to include the genre in my own list of favourites.

N.B. As always, this review is not really a critique of the book, just an expression of my own reactions!

Ann Creber
Producer/Presenter of The Good Life on 3MDR ( 97.1 FM, streaming on http://www.3mdr.com) Live to air every Monday 3.00-5.00 P.M.

PUBLISHER: HACHETTE AUSTRALIA

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