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Sphere of Influence Mass Market Paperback – September 7, 2004


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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Signet; Reprint edition (September 7, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451209443
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451209443
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.2 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #326,893 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

New York Times bestseller Mills (Burn Factor) returns with his fifth novel, featuring brilliant FBI tough guy Mark Beamon, who is investigating a terrorist threat linked to a global conspiracy. Killing time on a dead-end assignment while the Bureau plans his downfall, Beamon is thrown together with his former colleague Laura Vilechi when a videotape is delivered to the American media, indicating that Al Qaeda has smuggled a rocket launcher into the U.S. Their threat to use it against civilian targets has thrown the country into a panic, with people afraid to leave their homes. Meanwhile, Chet Michaels, one of Beamon's former trainees, now deep undercover in pursuit of a psychotic Mafioso, is nervously watching drug deals being made with shadowy Afghans. Looming behind all of this is a CIA deal with the devil (in the form of Christian Volkov, an international criminal mastermind), in which the U.S. government attempts to use organized crime figures as a proxy underworld army in the so-called war on terror. This thriller features real people and groups drawn from daily news headlines, playing on the anxieties of the American public-from the heroin trade to terrorism (and the connections between the two). But Mills avoids cynical exploitation, offering up human characters and a story that, despite some implausible subplots and heavy-handed editorializing, remains engrossing and affecting.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

Reeled in from a dead-end job, outspoken FBI agent Mark Beamon is sent undercover to investigate a terrorist cell with access to modern missile technologyand promptly sees a fellow agent get murdered. From the author of The Burn Factor.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Kyle Mills is the New York Times bestselling author of twelve books, including the latest in Robert Ludlum's Covert-One series, The Ares Decision.

Growing up in Oregon, Washington, DC, and London as a the son of an FBI agent, Kyle absorbed an enormous amount about the Bureau, giving his novels their unique authenticity. He and his wife live in Wyoming where they spend their off hours rock climbing and backcountry skiing.

Customer Reviews

The story was very timely and moved at a very good pace.
Dave
SPHERE OF INFLUENCE is a must read for anyone who enjoys a great thriller.
Harriet Klausner
Instead it meanders around everything other than the main plot.
Sridhar Krishnan

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By James P. Lea on May 20, 2006
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Although as stated in previous reviews, the plausability of this book does tend to be streched quite a bit, that does not subtract from the entertainment value of this book. Like his previous four novels, this book moves at a very quick pace, has engaging characters, and a plot line that will have you examining your morals and values. I wish Hollywood had the guts to adapt this novel to film as this would make a highly entertaining movie and would be very original as well. With the moral ambiguity of this book however I know that will never happen. Once again Kyle Mills has written a very clever and unique thriller. If you are looking for a very solid and entertaining thriller that will make you look at the world a litte differently- then you should enjoy this book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Tucker Andersen VINE VOICE on October 16, 2002
Format: Hardcover
In his latest thriller, Kyle Mills combines the convoluted plotting, conspiracy paranoia and rapidity of action in the best Ludlum books with the international political intrigue with government agents operating around the edges of legality found in the best of Clancy. FBI agent Mark Beamon returns as the central character of this present day adventure involving a confluence of individually believable events that have been woven into a fascinating and extremely fast moving if somewhat implausible scenario.
As readers of Mills' previous novels know, for political reasons Mark Beamon has become persona non grata at FBI headquarters and thus has been "promoted" to Special Agent in Charge (SAC) of the Phoenix office, a job which suits neither his temperament or skills. As he is trying to decide whether to move on with his life, a terrorist cell inside the US sends videotapes to media outlets which indicate that they possess a rocket launcher and plan to attack a major city. This causes a political firestorm, so Mark's friend and previous FBI associate secretly enlists Mark to help locate the terrorists before they can carry out their threat. Meanwhile when Mark is unable to prevent the murder of a fellow undercover FBI agent who has infiltrated the mob in an attempt to get information regarding their heroin distribution operations, he goes on a personal crusade to avenge the death which he could not prevent. Mark eventually develops a speculative theory regarding a possible connection between the two cases, and goes deep undercover himself. Mark manages to affiliate himself with an international crime organization run by Romanian expatriate Christian Volkov, and is pursued around the world by both the FBI and the CIA (in order to keep their own role hidden).
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on November 28, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This was a great story, even better than a Clancy book - more action and less verbage. The main character is again Mark Beamon, an older and slightly used up FBI agent put out to pasture as Special Agent in Charge at the Phoenix office. He gets pulled into a complicated case by his former partner Laura Vilechi who has been placed in charge of finding a missing rocket launcher held by Yasin, a powerful Afghan terrorist. The case gets much more complicated involving Volkov, a powerful drug lord and other drug dealers, the mafia, CIA bosses, and his own FBI boss. I would love to see another Beamon story but I do not know where Mr. Mills could possibly take him further.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By JC on October 11, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Sphere of Influence is the fifth novel by Kyle Mills and the fourth he has written about his main character, Mark Beamon. While readers of Mills' previous works will know what Beamon brings to a story, the strength of Sphere of Influence is its plot and storylines, which include many topics currently in the news. These include terrorism, drug-smuggling, and more. References are made to the Taliban, Osama bin Laden, and the World Trade Center. The realistic description of people and events adds to an already exciting and believeable story. Kyle Mills has penned his best novel yet and shows no signs of falling into the trap of mediocracy that plaques many writers at this stage. This book is good enough that new readers will be looking for his previous works.
Also recommended: Rising Phoenix, Storming Heaven, and Free Fall by Kyle Mills. Vince Flynn's Mitch Rapp novels including Transfer of Power and Separation of Power.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Hugh L Selman on November 2, 2002
Format: Hardcover
Mill's writing style is superb - excitement, tension, intrique, etc and out comes something to make you laugh such as
"She handed Beamon a tall glass and he took a sip of the cold, fizzy liquid. For the thousandth time in his life, he said a quick, silent prayer for the souls of the brilliant men who invented Alka-Seltzer."
The downside is that I guess I'll have to wait another year or so for the next one. I've read them all but if you haven't it will give you something to do until the next one comes along.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Roger L. Lee on January 26, 2003
Format: Hardcover
SPHERE OF INFLUENCE By Kyle Mills
I do not have time to write reviews on books on which I am neutral or do not like. I liked this book. Kyle Mills writes a good up-to-date adventure story about a rebel FBI agent who is not an FBI agent at the end of the tale. Mark Beamon who put the truth ahead of his job, and who was drinking and smoking himself into an early grave is a good believable lead character. He reminds me of people I have known in the past. Mark did not appear to fear death too much or anything else. His mind was made for thinking and he was afraid he was loosing his edge at that.
TV stations start getting videotapes from somewhere in the USA. They show a primitive rocket launcher, which is in the hands of terrorists somewhere in the States. The FBI immediately have almost all of the people terrified of where the first rocket will land, in a supermarket, schools, shopping malls in what State? When, is the next frightening question?
Beamon had ... off most of Congress and embarrassed the Washington elite with a too honest investigation and was about to be sacrificed on a tromped up charge. When a new president was elected and he had support again and was given an office in the field--one more dinosaur that would not disappear immediately.
He contacted Laura Vilechi, an old friend in the FBI for information about the rocket launcher and unofficially joined her effort to find it. This took him, Mark to places in the world that he would just as soon have never seen, and people like General Yung in Laos. Yung was a murdering sociopath the king of drug trafficking in his part of the world.
The FBI had in affect fired Mark, and he was working with a powerful mystery man, Christian Volkov whose primary income aside from his many legal businesses was from drugs.
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