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Locked On Hardcover – December 13, 2011

4.1 out of 5 stars 1,110 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


“Tom Clancy has passed the torch to a new generation.”--St. Louis Post-Dispatch

“Clancy still reigns.”--The Washington Post

“The man who virtually invented this genre.”--Publishers Weekly (starred review) --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

About the Author

Tom Clancy is the world's favorite international thriller author. Starting with The Hunt For Red October, all of Mr. Clancy's books have hit #1 on the New York Times bestseller list. Mr. Clancy lives in Maryland and owns an interest in the Baltimore Orioles.

Mark Greaney is the national bestselling author of The Gray Man series of books, the most recent of which, Ballistic was just released. Mr. Greaney lives in Memphis, Tennessee.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 864 pages
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons; 1st edition (December 13, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 039915731X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399157318
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.6 x 2.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,110 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #319,978 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There are no plot spoilers in this review.

I started with Tom Clancy 15 years ago, and he's been my favorite author since then. I appreciate his style of writing, technical accuracy, his character building, and his art of story telling. I am not as fond of the co-authored novels or the other series that bear his name. While generally better than most of the genre, they are not up to par with the Clancy of the early Jack Ryan and John Clark novels.

I approached this book with a bit of caution, because with "Dead or Alive", I walked away with the feeling that Clancy just didn't care about the quality of his work anymore. I was encouraged that this was a book with Ryan Sr. in a prominent role, but discouraged by it being co-authored.

Overall, I like this novel. The story telling, while not historical Clancy quality, is good. It draws you in, keeps you turning the page, and gets your blood pumping at times. Those who know Clancy's style of writing and his attention to detail will certainly appreciate many parts of this story. I found myself with a smirk several times thinking "typical Clancy" or "that's ingenious". The last Clancy novel I read where I had similarly good thoughts was "The Bear and The Dragon". As far as Ryan/Clark co-authored novels go, this is better than the others but far from being great. It was a very low bar that the Clancy/Greaney duo had to rise above.

While it is "good", I have an expectation for anything with Clancy's name to be "great". So many of Clancy's earlier works fall into this "great" category for me: Red Storm Rising, Hunt for Red October, Without Remorse, Executive Orders, Rainbow Six. This doesn't fit into the same category.
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Format: Kindle Edition
Fair warning: this review has a spolier at the end. It's marked by ***SPOILER*** tag.

I've always enjoyed Tom Clancy's books. Red Storm Rising was my first exposure. Cardinal was next and it set the high watermark for his subsequent books. Hunt for Red October came closest along with Without Remorse, but his other books were never less than solid.

This book however is hard to like. It feels as if it was never edited, for flow, for clarity, for readability. It makes for a disjointed, jarring read. I understand that this was ghostwritten but even then, you'd think a competent editor would be able to shape up the writing up to Clancy's standard. It's a shame because the book does tell an interesting story. It just needs to be cleaned up.

But by far my biggest gripe of this book is the way the story is needlessly politicized. I can probably guess where Tom Clancy leans politically. I have no issue with it and I share a good portion of it. But his books never were bully pulpit from which to preach his politics. Even a powder keg issue like abortion, Clancy was careful to balance Jack Ryan's principled stance against it with his wife's feminist beliefs. All that went completely out the window with this book. What results is cliched and shrill depictions of domestic opposition that frankly detract from the story.

I'm sure there are segments of readers who will nod as they read along, completely agreeing with one-dimensional and polarizing representations. For them, I'm sure this would appear to be a great book. There will be others too who would find that distracting and unnecessary. As for me, I just find it lazy.
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13 Comments 139 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
Without the energetic novelty from something like Patriot Games, and without the thorough overview and character development from Clancy's earlier works, his latest stuff just doesn't compare. Don't get me wrong, it's good and it should sell well, but it's not the stellar output that we're used to from the Clancy name.

Just like the other books in this latest push from Clancy to capitalize on his name, Locked on is ghostwritten (each with different writers; this one is by Greaney who has written a few books in the genre before (can't comment on those since I haven't read them). This will get the same criticism as the first two Clancy releases since his hiatus. If you're looking for "Hunt for Red October" or "Patriot Games" you're going to be disappointed. But if you want a good technothriller with a decent plot and most importantly the characters that you have grown so familiar with (Ding Chavez, John Clark, Caruso, and the Ryans), you'll enjoy the book.

Just look at it this way: there are hundreds of writers working on "The Simpsons" television show and that doesn't seem to bother people. Why should it matter if someone else is writing a Jack Ryan book?

This one gets behind the scenes of a Ryan's second race for the presidency, which is confounded by dirty tricks by the opposition (Ruin fans will love it), which evolves into a messy situation with Pakistan and terrorists. All the hot button issues today are hit on in this hefty volume and while you won't finish it in one read, that may be a good thing.
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