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Choosers of the Slain (Paladin of Shadows, Book 3) Hardcover – July 1, 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 79 customer reviews
Book 3 of 6 in the Paladin of Shadows Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In Ringo's latest SF-tinged techno-thriller to feature former navy SEAL Mike Harmon, a well-placed Washington, D.C., politician asks the Keldara, the ancient Caucasus mountain tribe Harmon trained to fight Chechen guerrillas in the previous book in the series (Kildar), to look into the disappearance of a campaign contributor's teenage daughter into the international sex trade. The Keldara plunge into a sewer of corruption leading to the highest Washington power circles. All the while, Harmon struggles against his own darker side. Those who thought Kildar too static will find plenty of well-thought-out set pieces sure to satisfy the most demanding action junkie. While Ringo displays his characteristic wry humor and sang froid, keeping track of the many subplots and bits of backstory can be challenging. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

In the latest volume of the saga of ex-SEAL Mike Harmon, aka Ghost, he is now a freelance international troubleshooter. Most recently, he shot some troublesome Chechnyens with the aid of some tough Caucasian mountaineers who may be the last descendants of the Byzantine empire's Varangian guard. When a cabal of high-powered blackmailers threatens the U.S. government with revealing photographs of legislators engaged with their high-class hookers, Ghost has a new job. He and his Sons of the Varangians descend on the blackmailers, liberating both their women and their files. In the process, Ghost has a few sexual engagements of his own and quite a few intelligent discussions of the subject with the intelligent female characters. His success means that he now has the goods on a lot of VIPs the world over, which promises well for the future of the series. This is definitely vintage Ringo, and fans of the prolific writer of action tales will be gratified. Roland Green
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: Baen (July 1, 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416520708
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416520702
  • Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 1.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (79 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,111,269 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Such is the basic worldview of Mike Harmon, former SEAL and accidental medieval warlord. A lot of us in the uglier parts of the US military are there to channel our demons into something for the betterment of society. When your sole talent and love is plotting the deaths of your fellow men in as messy and artistic a way as possible, yet you're socialized enough as a human being to know it's "wrong", you might as well go where you're hunting for the betterment of mankind. I read this one right on the heels of Ringo's We Few, and saw elements of the conflicted Prince Roger in Mike. I know what it's like to want to kill someone so bad I could taste it, yet knowing it's just not cool to do so. Finding an outlet for those energies now that my active infantry days are drawing to a close would be nice. Too bad there's no valley of the Kildara out there for the rest of us old soldiers.

While it's a novel that deals with the ugly truth of the international sex trade, it's true that Mike has his own kinks and falls into situations where he gets to exercise them. My wife, a conniseur of such fiction, rates one scene in particular rather highly.

The trigger pulling portions aren't bad, but often soft on some of the details. SPR's aren't really explained for what they are, and I think there's too much use of the H&K MP-5, then again I'm not an admirer of any 9mm SMG for beyond room use.

The disclaimer in the front of the book, often overlooked, actually contains one of the funniest lines in the book.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Choosers of the Slain by John Ringo

We first encounter the phrase “Choosers of the Slain” when Mike Harmon aka The Ghost aka Mike Jenkins aka numerous other names, speaks those words to a Keldaran hunter. Lasko has the kind of eyesight and coordination that allows him to hunt mountain goats in the Caucus mountains, high up where the air is thin and the zephyrs unpredictable. Jenkins, the Kildar, offers Lasko the chance to choose between the living and the dead. Lasko, a man of middle years not some enthusiastic teen recruit, needs no more cajoling than that simple offer. The Kelara to a man think of themselves first and foremost as warriors. Warriors kill.
“Choosers of the Slain” takes the number three position among the five books in Ringo's Kildar series. The Kildar has a mission given him by a senior US senator to track a young girl forced into prostitution in the Balkans. He and his mountain warriors must hack a trail from the Ukraine to Montenegro to find her, leaving the lifeless bodies of dozens of pimps, slavers and whore masters in their wake.
Ringo combines first class, non stop mil-tech action with occasional episodes of soft core porn. He excels at both kinds of writing but we find it unusual to have such a combination. His over all plot is all too believable. The depiction of the filthy underworld of sex trafficking is all too real. The things he describes actually happen more or less everywhere with the horrors coming up faster and harder in second and third world areas with scant government control and greed unbuffered by any sense of humanity. So when the bad guys get it in the neck, we applaud.
The above mentioned Lasko might properly be placed in the third or fourth tier of characters in importance.
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Format: Hardcover
And i got to say, that the tradition and style of John Ringo's writing kept me up all night reading the book on my computer.

Choosers of the Slain is a continuing book about Mike Jenkins and his "life" and his effects on people who enter it as well as those that affect him. In Ghost, After retiring from the service Mike starts to use his college benefits and performs a daring rescue of American women held hostage, he gets his reward on the death of several "bad" people and lives a life of luxury and travels the world where he ends up in Georgia. "Kildar" begins with him purchasing a valley filled with farms and tenants. The tenants are special in that they are a people different from the local population, i don't want to give too much away, but after training these people and doing a few local missions, "Choosers of the Slain" begins with more plots and intrique. From senators and pimps the action doesn't slow down.

Ghost, i purchased on a whim, my first e-book purchase. My second was Kildar, and now i bought this one as well. I can't wait to read the next installment, as there seems to be plenty of potential story lines John can go to from here.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Like Ringo's writing, just wish he would save the sex content for Hustler contributions. The kids have a great term for his bedroom escapades- TMI. If I wanted Penthouse Forum I would buy Penthouse Forum. That said....
Like the format, but maybe a time for some change up on Ringo's part? The training, training, training, training, and finally some kick ass. I understand that to everyone in the military training is the end all to be all, but after so many books- yes, I am a fan, believe it or not- it might be time to try something a little less predicable.
How about going deep undercover and rooting out some of the green peace imbeciles?
And Ringo- you need to be a little more discriminate in who you farm your outlines too.
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