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Robert Ludlum's The Lazarus Vendetta: A Covert-One Novel Paperback – October 19, 2004

4.1 out of 5 stars 77 customer reviews
Book 5 of 11 in the Covert-One Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Larkin (The Tribune) picks up the reins for the fifth entry in the Ludlum-spawned Covert-One biotech series (The Altman Code; etc.), bringing to the task a solid intelligence, some really scary nanotechnology and a writing style that sometimes lapses into cliché but always gets the job done. FBI Deputy Assistant Director Kit Pierson and her CIA counterpart, Hal Burke, are secretly working on an operation to destroy the Lazarus Movement, an environmental group run amok. Once a legitimate organization, the Lazarus Movement has been taken over by an evil scientist whose goal is—you guessed it—world domination. Thrust into the middle of this deadly struggle is series hero Lt. Col. Jon Smith, M.D., a scientist and operative for Covert-One, a super top-secret intelligence unit. When the Lazarus Movement's attack on a biotech lab releases a deadly brew of nanophages, microscopic killer devices that turn those unlucky enough to inhale them into piles of "reddish liquid sludge," some start to think that the movement's diabolical leader envisions a vastly depopulated world that he can redesign into an environmental paradise. The action careens from continent to continent, with the bad guys always a few steps ahead of the heroes. Eventually, everyone ends up on an island in the Azores, where, after a deadly firefight and some last-minute reversals, the inevitable conclusion arrives. Hand-to-hand action, intriguing science and plot speed will keep most techno-thriller readers nailed to their seats.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Since his death in 2001, Ludlum has joined the ever-expanding ranks of such authors as V. C Andrews, Lawrence Sanders, and William Coughlin who are writing from beyond the grave. His latest Covert-One novel (written with the able "assistance" of Patrick Larkin) proves that even being entombed six feet under has not hampered his ability to write intricately plotted, action-packed spy yarns. Bioterrorists have gotten hold of some nasty nanophages (submolecular organic machines) that cause humans to dissolve into a pool of bloody slime (described quite graphically) and have no qualms about releasing them on the unsuspecting public. As the body count racks up into the thousands, the evidence seems to point to a militant environmental group, the Lazarus Movement, as the culprit. Unfortunately for the bad guys, Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan Smith (last seen in The Altman Code, 2003), not only a medical doctor and an expert in molecular biology but also an operative for the president's personal, supersecret intelligence agency Covert-One, has been assigned to investigate. Assisted by CIA agent Randi Russell and Peter Howell of British MI-6, Smith rappels (literally) from one perilous situation to the next. A bit over the top but a fast read and sure to delight fans of both espionage and the technothriller. Michael Gannon
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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Product Details

  • Series: Covert-One (Book 5)
  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; 1st edition (October 19, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312316798
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312316792
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1.1 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (77 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,114,562 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Tucker Andersen on November 13, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Patrick Larkin has written an excellent and exciting addition to the Covert-One series created by Robert Ludlum shortly before his death. The central protagonist is Army Lt. Colonel Jon Smith M.D., who was first introduced to readers in THE HADES FACTOR, the very fast paced initial book in the series. The other characters familiar to readers of previous books in the series include CIA agent Randi Russell and the British ex-MI6 operative Peter Howells, who team with Smith as he attempts to penetrate the secrecy surrounding the goals and leadership of an environmental group known as The Lazarus Movement. Fred Klein remains Smith's boss as the head of the ultra clandestine Covert-One operation that reports directly to President Sam Castilla; its very existence continues to be kept secret from not only Randi and Peter but even from the CIA and FBI as well as Congress.

This book follows the classic Ludlum style, a thriller combining fast paced action, a convoluted plot and a few individuals fighting seemingly far more powerful shadowy forces; all these elements linked by a conspiracy that apparently involves high level government operatives. In brief, the original focus of The Lazarus Movement on peaceful reform of environmental policies on a worldwide basis has gradually been replaced by an increasingly strident emphasis on anti-technology protests and an activist agenda of protests and demonstrations in support of its demands for the adoption of its radical eco-conscious agenda. Despite the intense efforts of governmental intelligence agencies around the world, they have been unable to discover either the location of the organization's headquarters or the identity of its leader, a shadowy figure known only as Lazarus.
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Format: Paperback
Amazing that the Ludlum name can still instantly put novels on the the top 10 list ! This novel, another in the Covert-One series, is about nannotechnology being perverted to kill off a big chunk of the human race and achieve world domination. A little bit like Michael Crichton's State of Fear, this novel has an environmental movement gone bad, being used by evil figures for diabolical ends.It is reasonably well-written, fast-paced and keeps you turning the pages for the next event. The Bourne Identity, it is not.But it hooked me enough that I'll pick up the next in the series.
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Format: Paperback
The lead villain in the Lazarus Vendetta is a mad scientist aptly named Lazarus leading a small army of equally mad mercenaries and equally mad subordinate scientists on a path to world domination and mass international genocide. On the other side of the fence, attempting to thwart this dastardly plan, is an American specials ops doctor named Jon Smith and a sly old British secret service agent named Peter Howell who soon discover that rogue FBI and CIA teams are also up to no good. Smith and Howell dash from one side of the globe to the other, battling wave after wave of enemy forces and all sorts of nasty weapons including bioengineered invisible nanobots which turn humans into gobs of slime, as they race against the clock to save the world. If the star roles were switched in this story and the American Jon Smith became British MI6 Peter Howell this could easily be a 007 novel. Yes the villains are that hokey. Still, the Lazarus Vendetta is a fast-paced ride, descriptive, topical, and author Patrick Larkin has definitely proved himself gifted with the pen.
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There are plenty of other in depth reviews here, so I'll keep this short. This was another good read with plenty of twists and turns. It featured RL's usual nail biting - how will John Smith get out of this one, and of course he always does. Probably on the down side, I feel Ludlum sometimes gets a bit carried away with the nitty gritty technical stuff, and I find myself skipping a few lines to get back to the real story. (He came on a bit strong with the Nano techy stuff for me). However I'm a bit of a fan for his Covert One series, and as I said above, this is a good read with JS saving the world - again. One of the really great things about these is the ease to read.
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Format: Paperback
See synopsis above.

Its seems the Nano-tech thriller is becoming quite popular and Patrick Larkin does a great job with this one. ('Nano' by John Robert Marlow was also a good nanotech thriller).

I thought it was an exciting read and it kept me enthralled to the end. I don't seem to remember any slow spots in the whole novel. Good from beginning to end.

Highly recommended.
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Another excellent book on the exploits of Dr. Jon Smith and company. The plot was put together exclusively with Jon involved from the start. The story then unravels from there. As always the story is told and put together beautifully and keeps you involved from start to finish. On next to the next Jon Smith adventure. Thanks !!!
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The book is a typical thriller, with a rather over the top storyline, but an enjoyable read for most anyone that likes fantasy thrillers. In that regard, I'd give the book 4 stars.

The Kindle edition has very poor quality control, quite inexcusable. The typeface constantly changes from normal to bold, throughout the book. That is very distracting and annoying, because it's much more difficult to read with the constantly changing text. That's the reason for the 3 star rating.
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