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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on November 23, 2012
Having read and reread all of Jon Land's novels with rogue agent Blaine McCracken I was thrilled when after 15 years Blaine is back with a vengeance! This eBook did not disappoint and am looking forward to more reads with Blaine, Johnny Wareagle and Sal. Hopefully; they are back to stay!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on November 21, 2012
Pandora's Temple By Jon Land

Reviewed by Russell Ilg

Jon Land keeps the heat up with the best thriller writing you can find today. He has taken a break from the best series out there, featuring female Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong, to go all the way back to his roots by bringing back the legendary Blaine McCracken and Johnny Wareagle who'd appeared in nine previous tales that ended with 1998's Dead Simple. The McCracken series was the first Jon wrote, featuring the rogue agent the government goes to with impossible missions no one else would even think about taking on. Just another day at the office for McCracken who makes great use of the skills that made him an icon in his return to the page in Pandora's Temple.

I'm not sure if I've ever read a book with so many twists and turns and classic action sequences. Make no mistake about it, this is a huge-scale thriller with nothing less than the fate of the world at stake and nothing less than the most powerful force in the universe posing the threat. This as the ever-vigilant McCracken faces turning sixty and beginning to question his skills, not so much because they've eroded as the phone has stopped ringing. It's been two years since the government came calling, when all of a sudden Homeland Security approaches him with a mission to rescue four Brown University fraternity brothers from the clutches of a drug lord with hundreds of well-armed man guarding his compound in Mexico. The impossible rescue Blaine and Johnny undertake opens the book and sets the stage for all the equally redoubtable action to come. But all is not well, because one of the hostages dies in the process leading McCracken to further wonder if he's lost his edge.

That question is swiftly answered when McCraken, and Wareagle, learn that the lone other surviving member of their Special Forces Vietnam A-Team is missing from an offshore oilrig; the whole crew is missing thanks to some inexplicable phenomenon the same Homeland Security that sent Blaine to Mexico dispatches him to investigate. What he and Johnny find on the remnants of that rig lead to a global chase for the most powerful force in the universe somehow connected to the mythical Pandora's box (a jar actually, we learn). It lies in the equally mythic Pandora's Temple, the search for which McCracken and his team undertake in order to save the world while battling two groups of adversaries with limitless resources hell bent on getting their hands on the "dark matter" first. One is led by a billionaire energy magnate and the other the leader of a Japanese doomsday cult. Both are hiding terrible secrets that have long scarred them. Both will stop at nothing to gain the ultimate prize. But neither will McCracken who sees in a young female eco-terrorist an oddly kindred spirit. She too harbors scars and secrets, clearly a dominant theme here in a tale that's as much about healing as anything else.

Pandora's Temple takes off like a rocket and keeps speeding along at a breakneck pace right up to the climactic mountaintop battle that comes in the wake of confronting killer robots and even a giant squid that pops up to take a bite out of a mini-submarine McCracken has commandeered for the cause. The result is as close to a perfect thriller as you will ever read, immensely satisfying in pace as well as scale, as Jon Land proves beyond any doubt that he is one of the greatest authors of our time and the best action writer in the world today. Less than a year after penning a non-fiction book on Mob kingpin Whitey Bulger (Betrayal) and his best entry yet in the Caitlin Strong series (Strong Vengeance), he's back with the long-awaited return of Blaine McCracken in a relentlessly entertaining tale that's everything a thriller is supposed to be.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 20, 2013
I was so excited when I discovered Jon Land had released another in the Blaine McCracken series. I even went so far as to purchase the kindle edition as well as the paperback!
I loved Pandora's but have to admit it took me a bit to come to terms with Blaine being 60.. (and Sal closer to 70!)
I know today's 60 is like yesteryears 40, but it was still a leap of faith in Jon pulling it off realistically (which he did in spades!)
I'm happy he kept true to the timeline.. It would have been too easy to conveniently forget their origins were in Vietnam..
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on December 2, 2012
Pandora's Temple marks the return of Blaine McCracken in a nonstop action thriller that will hook you on the first page and
won't let go until the very last page. Blaine may now be 60 years old but he still has the action moves of a young man as he
takes on the bad guys whenever he has to, even taking on a giant squid. Even if you have never read Jon before take from some-
one who has read him from the start you will not be disappointed and will be hooked for good. Read him and be prepared for the
ride of your life.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 29, 2012
The story is engaging even though it is a little thin in places. The character development is good and continues throughout the story. What held my interest was seeing how each new development was handled by Blaine McCracken and Wareagle.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 20, 2012
I have been reading Land's books for decades. I relished going back into McCracken and Wareagle 's actions and dialogues. For me it was a fast read. Did not want to put it down till the end. If Land had kept writing I would have kept reading!!!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
I think the test of a great book involves losing track of time while reading. Well, this one passed. I couldn't believe I'd spent four hours reading last night. Wow! I'm not even finished yet, but I just had to post this review. This is my first McCracken book, but it won't be the last! Cheers to Mr. Land!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on December 4, 2012
Good read... especially liked that characters have aged after the 10 year hiatus between stories.....have read and enjoyed all previous McCracken novels and this one is true to the McCracken / Wareagle heritage..
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 30, 2012
When I first found out in early November that a NEW Blaine McCracken book was finally coming out after 14+ years, I was:

Happier than a witch in a broom factory.
Happier than a bodybuilder directing traffic.
Happier than an antelope with night vision goggles.
Happier than Gallagher at a fruit market.
Happier than a slinky on an escalator.

Okay, I think you get the point. Finally! After a 14 yr absence, a thriller featuring the return of Blaine McCracken & Johnny Wareagle. These two action heroes were last seen saving the world back in 1998 with Dead Simple. Jon Land was writing these over the top, end of the world, super-villain deluxe, pure action thrillers since way back in the 80's and 90's. Blaine was featured in 9 previous titles, and Jared Kimberlain (aka the Ferryman) was featured in another two.

Jon's last several books have dealt with a female Texas ranger, Catlin Strong (Strong at the Break: A Caitlin Strong Novel (Caitlin Strong Novels)). While I enjoy the Catlin stories very much, as I did the 7 novels featuring Ben and Danielle (for example: The Walls of Jericho (Ben and Danielle)), for me, the books that I REALLY wanted to read were the Blaine McCracken & Jared Kimberlain action novels. If you enjoy reading Matt Reilly thrillers like Ice Station: A Scarecrow Novel 1, or the Chess Team stories by Jeremy Robinson like Threshold (A Jack Sigler Thriller), or any of the Sigma Force stories by James Rollins like Sandstorm then you will enjoy this action thriller. But, keep in mind that Jon was there before these 3 excellent authors I just cited. In fact, it is because of Jon Land that I became hooked on this type of story and took chances on those 3 authors listed above when they FIRST came out with their titles. Jon paved the way for these guys. Pandora's Temple is a return to this type of thriller for Jon Land. I was in 7th Heaven when I first heard the news about this. I got hooked on reading Jon Land thrillers back in Sep 90 during Operation Desert Shield when I came across The Eighth Trumpet (Jared Kimberlain) in paperback (just picked up this thriller on Cyber Monday for only $2.02). That was it! I instantly became a Jon Land fan and have read all his thrillers since then (going on 21+ years now).

Did I like the book? You bet! I loved every minute and certainly want more! It was like James Bond on a sugar rush....Pure action all the way. Over the top? Yes and I loved it even more for that! Can Johnny Wareagle shoot 2 M-16s at the same and hit the bad guys? Heck yes he can! Go Johnny Go! A rollercoaster of thrills and action all the way. I pre-ordered this thriller at $9.99, but was really pleased when the priced dropped to $2.99. At this low price, I would suggest you RUN, not walk, and jump at this thriller as well.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on December 7, 2012
I didn't know Pandora's box was really a jar and I didn't think Jon Land would ever bring Blane McCracken back to the page. I was worried early on that his trusty sidekick Johnny Wareagle didn't make the trip this time, but I was quickly proven wrong. Welcome back, Blaney, it's been too long!!
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