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Larry Bond's Red Dragon Rising: Shadows of War Hardcover – November 10, 2009

83 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Bestseller Bond and DeFelice (Larry Bond's First Team) launch a four-book series with an adrenaline-fueled, multilayered thriller that cuts right to the chase. In 2014, China must cope with widespread riots and a devastating drought; the U.S., where gas costs $14.39 a gallon, is suffering through a recession and a housing crisis; Europe has problems just as serious. When China decides to invade Vietnam in an effort to save its starving populace, the U.S. determines to aid Vietnam to insure the world order. Compelling characters include CIA operative Mara Duncan, who's based in Bangkok, Thailand; Maj. Zeus Murphy, who simulates a war game called Red Dragon (which pits China against the U.S. under code names) and proudly drives a gas-guzzling Corvette; and American scientist Josh MacArthur, who's on the run in Vietnam from a Chinese commando and martial arts master, Lt. Jing Yo. Constant action makes this a must read for military adventure fans. (Nov.)
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From Booklist

The authors’ first of a projected four-book series takes the reader to a bleak world five years from now. Food is scarce, and gasoline prices are through the roof, making every day a struggle. Josh MacArthur, an American scientist working on the Vietnamese border, watches in horror as his colleagues are slaughtered by an invasion team from China, starting what could become World War III. An elite military operation to rescue the scientist is launched, but special care must be taken to avoid escalating the conflict. So MacArthur waits, hiding in the jungle, and the world watches as the war continues to spread across Asia. The president of the U.S. is desperate to find MacArthur, as he has a videotape of the attack that will prove that the Chinese government is lying to the world about the reason for the U.S. presence in Vietnam. The authors have done their homework, using clips from newspaper reports to heighten the realistic feel and producing a thriller that reads like an account of true events. Fans of military thrillers, especially Clancy’s, are the built-in audience for this one. --Jeff Ayers

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Product Details

  • Series: Red Dragon Rising (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Forge Books (November 10, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765321378
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765321374
  • Product Dimensions: 6.5 x 1.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (83 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #354,748 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Jay C. Tipnis on December 30, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I hadn't really read any of Larry Bond's other works since his collaboration with Tom Clancy ("Red Storm Rising") but I was aware that many reviewers compared him to Clancy in the sense that he was good at creating plausible world conflict scenarios interweaving it with enough background to make for an interesting story. I also knew that he was good at writing about tactics and war strategy given that he helped develop two strategy games which are fairly well reputed (Harpoon and the World in Conflict serieses). So when I read that he was starting a new series of a potential war against China, I was intrigued.

China is fast becoming the popular enemy du jour in many books and novels about future conflicts replacing the once ubiquitous Russians. In this novel (the first of four books in the series), world climate changes have affected the environments around the world leading to food shortages in countries like China and a re-focus on farming around the world (farms are popping up in people's backyards in New England). The book starts off rather quickly with China's secret invasion of Vietnam; the purpose being to make it appear that Vietnam attacked it's neighbor therefore justifying China's retaliation and helping keep allied nations (like the United States) out of the conflict. The action then rolls on from there at a pretty rapid clip.

Since this is the first of four books there was a lot of time spent in focusing on the Chinese (particularly a commando group that spearheaded the initial invasion) and their hunt for a US scientist who has witnessed (and videotaped) proof that China was the true first aggressor.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By CADiver2004 on January 24, 2010
Format: Hardcover
Like most reviewers, I have been a Larry Bond fan for a long time having first read "Cauldron", "Red Phoenix", etc. I have read most of the books he has collaborated or co-written with Jim DeFelice. Having said that I found "Red Dragon Rising: Shadows of War" to be the type of action-techno-thriller that I have come to enjoy.

If you are turned off by the reference to "action-techno-thriller" that I used to describe this book, do not be. While there are references to technology in this book, it is not over the top and most of the equipment that is used and described appears to be everyday hardware. The story here is about the people, the emotions, the motivations, the questioning nature of human beings, and the brutality that evident in many parts of the world.

I am not going to go into detail on the story as many reviewers have done that already, what I wanted to mention is that I enjoyed this book immensely. **Spoiler ALERT** It kept me glued to the story, and I found myself secretly rooting for Jing Yo, not to capture or kill Josh MacArthur, but to see the futility of the orders from Colonel Sun. There were areas in the book that I felt could and should have more multi-dimensional. Captain Lai Wi finds two soldiers attempting to use a satellite phone, confiscates the phone and begins to walk out of the jungle. I would have liked to read from his perspective the attack that ultimately took his life.... The book left me wanting more - which I am sure, will be in the next installment (yes, in my opinion there will be another installment). The other thing I thought would have been a more fitting ending to this particular story is to end the book similar to how it started with a narration to Markus...
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By J. Brandt VINE VOICE on October 14, 2009
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The first thing I thought when I ordered the book was that it would be similar to the famous Tom Clancy's "Red Storm Rising" which I still believe is one of the best military fiction books written in the last 30 years. In this book, Larry Bond and Jim Defelice take on the idea that the ecological situation (global warming) leads to China in a desperate situation with the need to expand its borders or die due to emerging farming problems and other problems. As the Chinese army begins to move towards war with Vietnam a few Americans are dragged along for the ride. I didn't dislike the book, but I thought the book took way too long to really get started and I never cared much for the Americans caught in the middle between China and Vietnam and just didn't get into the dialogue or the whole plot.

Again, it's not a bad read, but it's not what I hoped it would be. Apparently, this book is just one of a trilogy(?) and hopefully the action picks up in the next books in the series. It's worth reading, but I can only give it 3 of stars.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Dan and Rachel VINE VOICE on April 20, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I've always been a fan of Larry Bond and have found his coverage of this genre (war, terrorism, military adventure) very solid. The genre is currently stuck in a bit of a rut, with many authors in the space using plots that are centered around some sort of Middle East threat. Not unlike what happened during the cold war when everyone was writing about Communism and the clash of the super powers. So when Bond stepped out and wrote a book in the genre and centered it against the threat of global warming and how that caused a military event, I was happy to see someone try something fresh.

Bond paints a picture of world where global warming has thrown economies into a tizzy. As this plays out early in the book we learn that China feels forced to launch an attack against Viet Nam to deal with shrinking food supplies, etc. I won't be a spoiler and reveal some of the details, but the rest of the the book follows a scientist caught behind enemy lines and chronicles the efforts of an American intelligence operator who risks her life to pull him out. All well and good, but I'm afraid I struggled to get through the first three quarters of the thing. The action was too slow and at times felt contrived and to be honest, the whole global warming thing felt unrealistic to me; it was a bit too far fetched. Near the end, Mr. Bond brings it home and I found myself up late one night not wanting to put it down. "A" for effort, "C" for execution.
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