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Product Details

  • Series: Jack Ryan (Book 9)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 912 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley (September 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425170349
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425170342
  • Product Dimensions: 1.7 x 2.7 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,571 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,148 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

For many readers, Jack Ryan embodies the essence of the modern American hero. Morally centered, disciplined, humble yet powerful, Ryan (and his onscreen incarnations in Alec Baldwin and Harrison Ford) has made Tom Clancy one of the most popular writers in the world. But as Clancy has constructed the Ryan mythology, he has quietly established Ryan's shadow double, John Clark. Appearing in The Cardinal of the Kremlin, Clear and Present Danger, and Without Remorse, Clark has many of Jack Ryan's most appealing traits, but he is also a darker figure embodying the more paranoid sensibilities of the late '90s. As is made clear from the opening pages of Rainbow Six, ex-Navy SEAL Clark and his colleagues believe violent, deadly force to be the best deterrent for terrorism.

Clark (a.k.a. Rainbow Six) has left the CIA to create an England-based organization code-named "Rainbow." Its mission: deploy an elite squad of American operatives combined with handpicked British, French, and German agents to stop terrorism in its tracks. Rainbow's emergence could not be more timely: in quick succession, the force diffuses three attempted terrorist actions. But Clark becomes suspicious when Russian agents suddenly show interest in Rainbow's work.

Rainbow Six appeals on all the levels that Clancy fans could hope for. The Rainbow operatives, from Navy SEALs to German mountain-leader school graduates, are rendered to inspire with their physical and mental prowess. The book is infatuated with the latest gadgets for scrambling, transmitting, and decoding secrets. And, in a carefully woven narrative that simultaneously traces the Rainbow team, a former KGB agent named Popov, the Australian Olympic security team, and a sinister group of American scientists, Clancy artfully reveals the mystery of "Shiva" at the center of the novel. How does Clark measure up against Jack Ryan? He may be the perfect hero for a world with hidden villains. --Patrick O'Kelley --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Two years ago, Executive Orders, which thrust Jack Ryan into the Oval Office, raised the bar for its immensely popular author. This first Clancy hardcover since then, though a ripping read, matches its predecessor neither in complexity nor intensity nor even, at 752 pages, length, despite a strong premise and some world-class action sequences. Instead of everyman Ryan, its lead is the more shadowed John Clark, the ex-Navy SEAL vigilante of Without Remorse who has appeared in several Ryan adventures. Clark now heads Rainbow Six, an international special-ops anti-terrorist strike force?and, despite the novelty of the conceit, that's a problem, as the profusion of protagonists, though sharply drawn (including, most notably, "Ding" Chavez, Clark's longtime protege), deprives the book of the sort of strong central character that has given Clancy's previous novels such heart. The story opens vigorously if arbitrarily, with an attempted airline hijacking foiled by Clark and Chavez, who happen to be on the plane. After that action sequence, the duo and others train at Rainbow Headquarters outside London, then leap into the fray against terrorists who have seized a bank in Bern, Switzerland. And so the pattern of the narrative is set: action sequence, interlude, action sequence, interlude, etc., giving it the structure and pace of a computer game. A major subplot involving bioterrorism that evolves into an overarching plotline syncopates that pattern, though Clancy's choice of environmentalists as his prime villains will strike some readers as odd. All of Clancy's fans, however, will revel in the writer's continued mastery at action writing; Rainbow's engagements, which occupy the bulk of the novel, are immensely suspenseful, breathtaking combos of expertly detailed combat and primal emotion. While not Clancy's best, then, his 10th hardcover will catapult to the top of bestseller lists?and for good reason. Two million first printing; $1 million ad/promo; simultaneous Random Audio and Red Storm Entertainment computer game; author tour.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

More About the Author

Tom Clancy is America's, and the world's, favorite international thriller author. Starting with THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER, all thirteen of his previous books have hit #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. His books, THE HUNT FOR RED OCTOBER, PATRIOT GAMES, CLEAR AND PRESENT DANGER and THE SUM OF ALL FEARS have been made into major motion pictures. He lived in Maryland where he was a co-owner of the Baltimore Orioles.

Customer Reviews

This book has a lot of action and is very exciting.
Mrs. Greene's class
At some point you feel like the book is a little bit too "heavy".
URIOSTE BOUZA NICOLAS
I read this book in two days and it is about 900 pages long.
Spencer McMinn

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

86 of 96 people found the following review helpful By Alex Diaz-Granados on October 5, 2003
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Rainbow Six, Tom Clancy's 10th novel and ninth in the Jack Ryan/John Clark series, once more focuses on the ex-CIA paramilitary field officer known in the Agency as Mr. Clark. This time, the focus once again turns to the challenges of fighting global terrorists and the menace from extremists determined not only to reshape society, but the entire planet's environment.
Clark is close to retiring as a paramilitary officer in the Central Intelligence Agency's Directorate of Operations when Agency executive directors Ed and Mary Pat Foley, with the tacit approval of the recently elected President John Patrick Ryan, ask him to run an elite team of antiterrorist Special Ops fighters from several NATO countries. Their mission: to act as an international 911 team in hostage and other terror-related situations deemed too high-risk for local law-enforcement agencies. Based in England, this so-called Rainbow Team will be deployed mainly in Europe, but with support from U.S. and other allied nations, can operate anywhere in the world. Clark, who was an enlisted member of a SEAL team in Vietnam, is given a rank equivalent to a full colonel and the call sign Rainbow Six. (In military parlance, the designator "six" after a unit's call sign is assigned to a commanding officer.)
Rainbow Six opens with a tense incident high above the Atlantic as a small group of Basque terrorists attempts to hijack the plane carrying Clark, his wife, his protege and new son-in-law Domingo "Ding" Chavez, and Alistair Stanley, his British second in command, to London. Using their wits and finely honed skills, the three Rainbow members overwhelm the hijackers and save the crew and their fellow passengers.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Bufford D. Moore on April 28, 2006
Format: Hardcover
Minor spoilers below if you haven't read the book.

Tom Clancy's literary reverence for things military is overtly evident through his books from Hunt for Red October onwards. In Rainbow Six, he indulges in small unit tactics for a whole tome. In many ways typical Tom Clancy, the book is instructive at a layman level about anti-terrorist tactics as practiced by special forces units. I have little doubt that the usual level of research went into this book that Mr Clancy usually carries out. I admit to being an unabashed fan.

So why not five stars?

Well, to be honest, nothing ever goes wrong for these guys. The books continuously alludes to the virtual certainty of problems with operations, but then nothing really does. I kept waiting for the problem and the subsequent analysis, but it never happened. I realized that, among the other obvious things that I like about Clancy, the recognition of the failings that people have and the way these play out on a broad stage are much of what I enjoy about his books. This one doesn't really have that.

Good Clancy, but not the best Clancy
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer Hansen on August 26, 2003
Format: Hardcover
I didn't realize for years that Mr. Clancy had written other books in the Ryan universe besides _The Hunt for Red October,_ and I kicked myself when I found out what I had been missing: lots of big fat good books with equal portions brain and heart. This one took some getting into, though, because I am a granola treehugging eagles-belong-downtown envirofeminist myself. (Belong downtown? In my little Alaskan town, they crap on the cars. Everybody in the U.S. should have the privilege of wiping bald eagle crap off of their own automobile.) But on rereading, I got a chill down my spine.
Any deeply held belief system can be coopted by the taint in the human soul and turned into a Cause, as in Anything For The. Clancy's genius shows in the way he created a believable charismatic human monster in the historic tradition, but gave him a Cause for the 21st century. It made me reexamine my dismissal of the wackaloons of the environmental movement. All they need is a demagogue.
The lesser monsters who cluster around John Brightling have their finely drawn individual freakishness as well. They remind me of Hitler's supporting cast, and I suspect that that was the author's model. You have the man who scarcely blinks at human death but flinches at the deaths of small animals; the self-indulgent brute who murders rather than restrain his appetite; the enthusiastic planners who are so in love with the big picture that they find it easy to ignore its horrible scaffolding; the dreamers who really believe that their personal obsessions justify the bloody overthrow of civilization. I entertained myself on a hot afternoon by imagining life in the Kansas facility in a plotline where the Project succeeded. Then I shuddered and went out into the sunlight.
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23 of 29 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 26, 2001
Format: Hardcover
It seems that Tom Clancy's most recent novels don't measure up to his older stories. Unfortunately, Rainbow Six seems to continue that trend. The slow pace, pathetic character development, and silly main plot prevent this book from being on the same level as his earlier novels.
Without a doubt, the biggest flaw in the story is the virtually non-existant character development. The best example of this is the Rainbow squad members. I know that it's hard to give individual personalities to twenty or so different characters, but that isn't a good enough excuse to explain their total lack of develoment. They are prety much typical military stereotypes, with next to no background or personal information given about them. At the very least, I would expect Clancy to pay some attention to Ding Chavez, seeing how important he is to the story, but he also doen't have much in the way of personality. John Clark fares slightly better in this department than the other members of the squad, retaining the same personality that Clancy fans have come to love. The best character in the book is Dmitriy Arkadeyevich Popov, the cunning former Russian KGB agent, who is extremely greedy but still has something of a conscience. On the other side, the major villians of the story, like the Rainbow squad, suffer from lack of development, as they aren't even fully introduced until near the end of the book. For me to understantd their motivations and their ambitions, they needed to have a more deal of screen time. The end result was the shoddily developed villians you saw.
The slow pace is another culprit. Most of the book's 897 page lengh is annoying filler material which should have been edited out. The pace picks up during last two hundred pages, but it's too late to sve the rest of the book.
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