Penguin Group (USA) LLC
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The Night Ranger (John Wells Series Book 7) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 418 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Top Customer Reviews
I won't rehash the whole story line here, as this is a review and not a synopsis. You can get that on the book's Product Page (and evidently some of the other reviews).
Here's my take. John Wells (Berenson's central character) has, throughout the rest of the series, been involved in missions with very high stakes on the geo-political stage. That lends an element of tension and import to the stories that's completely missing here.
In Africa some kids who work to aid starving Somalis in the camps are kidnapped. Wells's estranged son persuades him to get involved as a personal favor. Wells shows up and starts trying to solve the mystery of who took them: criminals seeking ransom? Terrorists? Somali rebels? Is it an inside job?
The problems as I see them are these. First of all, this is essentially a pretty small story that takes place on a pretty small stage, much smaller than we're used to seeing Wells involved in. This is more a Jack Reacher kind of story.
The book moves VERY slowly, because we follow each event in the book from several perspectives: the kidnap victims', Well's, the kidnappers', and in many cases from the perspective of Wells's ex-boss and friend Ellis Schaeffer. Though this does give us the full picture of events, it really bogs down the flow of the story.
The story never really builds up much tension; I just didn't feel it.
The big mortal blow is that there's a character central to the plot who's definitely responsible for the events that take place (I'm being circumspect so as not to write a spoiler) ... and we never get any emotional payoff of seeing him pay for what he did!
So, a big disappointment. A generous three stars.
When their captivity drags on John Well's estranged son calls him after years of having no contact to ask him to intervene and try to free the four. One of the girls is his son's girlfriend's sister. John agrees to try and rescue the captives in order to possibly reestablish a relationship with the boy, and travels to Kenya to try and free them. Like the other Well's books the action is fast and keeps the reader glued to the pages. John, while no longer a member of the CIA coordinates his efforts with his ex supervisor since the US becomes officially interested in rescuing the volunteers, up to and including possibly sending in an invading force.Read more ›
Similar to all six books in Alex Berenson's John Wells series, The Night Ranger is entertaining and well-researched, However, relative to the first five books in the series, The Night Ranger (as well as Berenson's most recent previous book, The Shadow Patrol) is not quite as well-plotted, nor is it as much of a page-turner. Further, on a comparative basis, The Night Ranger, falls somewhat short in terms of dimensionalizing his main character and particularly his supporting characters; to the point that readers who have not read any of this author's previous books might feel they don't know some of the characters as well as they would have liked in order to care more about them. A further issue I had with Berenson's characters that were taken hostage and were exposed to some horrific experiences pertained to how little they seemed to be affected by them.
Despite these flaws, The Night Ranger is an acceptable read and one with which I think many espionage/spy gender readers will be satisfied. I'd suggest, however, that before reading The Night Ranger new readers to the series begin with The Faithful Spy and at least one of the other John Wells books to enhance their understanding and appreciation of the some of the characters they will meet in this book.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I always learn something when I read Alex's books. Can't wait until his next one comes out!Published 10 days ago by Terrence H. O'toole
John Wells is a great hero and Alex Berenson, a great storyteller. You don't read a John Wells thriller, you live it. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Daniel Barbier
Good book similar to all others. Would read another book with same characterPublished 4 months ago by craig m morris
Another John Wells story. I enjoy the fact that he is a flawed character and that nothing is ever easy. Keep the stories coming.Published 5 months ago by Bruce A. Norton
Very different setting & plot, but just as intense. Great read full of doublecrosses, political maneuvering and John Wells heroics.Published 5 months ago by Julie G
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I started with the first Berenson book and find them entertaining, dynamic, current and well researched. Looking forward to a novel about Africa, lots of story potential, should be a good place for John Wells to mix things up!
Dec 26, 2012 by Reading in Georgia | See all 2 posts
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