From Publishers Weekly
Taking post-9/11 conspiracy theories that blamed the attacks on Zionist agents as the seed for this unusual thriller, Ferrigno (The Wake-Up
) posits a nuclear terrorist onslaught in 2015 on New York City, Washington, D.C., and Mecca that has all the earmarks of a Mossad operation. The blue states are moved by these horrors to convert to Islam, while the red states break away from the Islamic Republic, forming a Christian republic in the South. By 2040, three major parties struggle for control in the Islamic Republic: the moderate State Security forces, under Redbeard; the Black Robes, a fundamentalist religious police force; and the top-secret Assassins, under the Old One. When Sarah Dougan, Redbeard's niece and a respected historian, reinvestigates the 2015 attack for a new book, The Zionist Betrayal?
, the Old One sics his deadliest assassin on her. Running from Seattle to Vegas, Sarah has a protector in her lover, an ex-fedayeen soldier named Rakkim Epps, whose agnostic POV anchors the novel. Fans of instapundit politics will love this thriller, which has the cinematic motion and atrocity F/X of a good airport read. However, Ferrigno's gimmick—the transformation of America into a cartoon version of Islam—lends the proceedings a damaging air of implausibility. (Feb.)
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marks a departure for Ferrigno, whose previous books focused on life in contemporary Southern California. In Ferrigno's neo-Orwellian world, Mount Rushmore has disappeared, LAX has become Bin Laden International, and midday prayers interrupt the Super Bowl. Critics expressed different ideas about the plot, using words such as "preposterous," "credible," and even "ordinary" to describe it. There's no doubt, however, that Ferrigno raises important questions about religious freedom while handling the subject of Islamic faith with great insight and evenhandedness. If the plot sometimes overwhelms character development, he still allows his creations to air their own opinions without moralizing. In sum: a fast-paced thriller with timely appeal.
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.