'The Last Jihad'
By: Joel Rosenberg
(Hardcover / 352 Pages / Forge / ISBN: 0765307154 / $24.95)
Description: Timeliness adds considerable juice to Rosenberg's frenzied political thriller, set a couple of years in the future. In the wake of September 11, popular American president James MacPherson has spearheaded an international effort to destroy terrorist training camps in the Middle East and North Africa. Osama bin Laden has been killed, but Saddam Hussein continues to plot against the West.
Verdict: The plot is quite involved. Just when you think you have things figured out, there's a new twist. I don't want to give details of the plot as it will ruin the surprise of discovering the twists: just know they are there and that it makes for a fun read. One of the things that I liked about the main plot was it was so believeable. In fact, I heard about this book while watching the author, Joel C. Rosenberg interviewed on Hannity and Colmes. I heard Joel say that while writing the book, 9-11 hit and he had to do some adjusting to the plot due to how real his initial premise was to what had just occurred. The characters become your friends, just as in any good book. I liked the character development, much like a Tom Clancy novel, in that the reader seems to be drawn into a world of reality that most of us only see from the outside. How do they set up security boundaries for Presidential motorcades? How do they draw information out of a suspect that may be reluctant to talk? I have wondered about that very thing while hearing of some of the information drawn out of the actual Taliban prisoners held in Cuba. How do they get these "loyal" Taliban top aides to talk? I got an idea of how it might be done in Chapter 5 ! All in all this was one terrific read. If the first chapter doesn't get you hooked, then have a Urologist check out your adrenal glands. For the rest of us, lay off the caffeine. This book is a good substitute. My only complaint: It'll take Joel C. Rosenberg at least a couple of years to pound out another book !