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The Russian: A Novel (Rob Tacoma, 1) Hardcover – July 30, 2019
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"This new series has me very excited." ―Brad Thor
As the brutal Russian mafia becomes the most powerful and deadly criminal enterprise in the U.S., it’s up to covert operative Rob Tacoma to fight back, in a new series by New York Times bestseller Ben Coes.
Ruthless, clever, and unbelievably violent, the Russian mafia has rapidly taken over the criminal underworld in the U.S. and law enforcement has been unable to stem the tide. When a powerful Russian mob family declares war by publicly executing two high-profile American politicians, the message is unmistakable – opposition will be met with overwhelming deadly force. With no other viable options, the President creates a clandestine assassinations team to find and eliminate the unreachable men running this deadly criminal operation.
The CIA recruits two Tier 1 operators – former Navy SEALs Billy Cosgrove and Rob Tacoma. But before they can even get started, the Russians act – murdering Cosgrove in his own home. Now Tacoma is on his own against an organization with endless resources and no boundaries. Step one requires the near impossible - find and kill the hidden mob boss behind Cosgrove’s death. To do this, he’ll have to take on an army in a battle where there are no rules and no limits.
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“The opening pages of this fine spy thriller can jolt one, just for a delirious moment, into thinking that Ian Fleming is among us again.” ―Booklist
"Think Clear and Present Danger meets John Wick . . . Ben Coes brings the heat with The Russian, a no-rules, no-limits, punch-to-the-gut of a thriller that takes a blowtorch to the competition and will leave readers begging for a follow-up." ―The Real Book Spy
"Authentic tradecraft and top-notch action scenes propel the plot. Coes continues to more than hold his own in a crowded thriller field." ―Publishers Weekly
About the Author
- Publisher : St. Martin's Press (July 30, 2019)
- Language : English
- Hardcover : 368 pages
- ISBN-10 : 125014079X
- ISBN-13 : 978-1250140791
- Item Weight : 1.2 pounds
- Dimensions : 6.66 x 1.2 x 9.51 inches
- Best Sellers Rank: #532,590 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
About the author
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Top reviews from the United States
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The other supporting cast are there as well—Hector Calibrisi from the CIA, President J.P. Dellenbaugh and even a cameo appearance by Dewey Andreas, so this is not so much a new series as the highlighting of one character in an ensemble cast. The premise: the Russian Mafia is taking over the world of crime and is upset with those who stand in their way, so they knock off a U.S. Senator and the Florida governor who is a top presidential candidate. Our country will not stand for such shenanigans and promptly puts together a team to return their assassination favors. One (a man named Cosgrove) is promptly terminated with extreme prejudice and the other, our hero Rob Tacoma, springs into violent action. Rob is a former Navy Seal, speaks umpteen languages, knows at least fifteen ways to kill you using only his earlobes and has already been issued an unlimited budget and a presidential pardon for anything he might choose to do. So lock and load that safety belt. SPOILER: the ultimate bad guy has a prosthetic arm that enables him to lift large human objects, break their bones, strangle them, and so on, depending upon his mood.
This is fantasy land, a place in which Rob can swim underwater, carrying all of his tools and weapons. Unlike his classic film predecessors, his weapons will sometimes run out of ammunition, but Rob will never run out of fire in the belly and kill-capacity in his fingers and toes. The interesting thing is that this is a Ben Coes novel, so that the fantasy is simultaneously anchored by precise detail: elaborate files on foreign and domestic operatives with all of the appropriate acronyms in place; extended dialogue in Russian (yes, with translations) and the kind of detailed information on armament that would make Q proud.
All in all, a Nantucket sleigh ride, but we’re in New York, Greenwich, CT, Langley, the Miami docks, Jupiter Island (watch out Tiger; Rob’s in town), and Grosvenor Square, London.
Bottom line: unputdownable fun; leave your requirements for realism at the door and keep your head down when the bullets fly.
I look at some of these other reviews and wonder where these guys are coming from? Sure, there are some things that stretch facts a bit but some of these "reviewers" seem downright mean to me.
What is the purpose of a book like this? To me, it is entertainment. I am not trying to learn how to become an assassin, should I want to.
Mr. Coes take an preciously known character, Rob Tacoma and makes him the hero of the story. I thoroughly enjoyed my first reading of this book and will probably reread it soon. It is that good.
I enjoyed reading this much anticipated if a bit choppy new start of the Rob Tacoma series. I was quickly immersed in the story and couldn't put it down. Read it in one sitting!
For those of us who have read the previous Dewey Andreas series many familiar characters return including Dewey, Calibrisi, Katie, Igor. Rob Tacoma, himself, was pretty much consistent with previous depictions. Still, there was something missing in his interactions with other characters. The character interactions felt forced, almost uncomfortable.
There were jarring moments with other characters when I felt that a particular character (Katie) would not behave the way its was portrayed. I found myself yelling at the book, "Katie would never get that emotional, she's a woman of brains, logic and action! She doesnt cry! She solves problems!"
Dewey's cameo left me feeling sad and the scene felt artificial. It damaged his image and made him look like a loser. He and Rob are both pro's. They would not make those kinds of mistakes that led to the final chapters. They are better than that. And really, the author missed an opportunity there towards the end, instead of plugging in Dewey he could have introduced a new character that could grow and be a foil for Tacoma. That would have been a great hook for the next book.
There were parts of the book that felt like they weren't written by Ben Coes but by Ben Coes Lite. In short, the book felt "dumbed down" compared to previous ones. Now its like all the others. I miss the depth and complexity of previous works. I want the REAL Ben Coes! It doesnt feel like the author's heart was in this book.
I hated the ending!
Understandably, its not easy starting another series after so many years spent with a much loved character. I'm hoping the next book will hit its stride and smooth out the rough patches started in this one.
So here's to hoping the next book returns to Ben Coes quality because as long as Mr. Coes writes it. I'll buy it.
Like Dewey and Tacoma, he is a badass and we love them!
***I received a copy of this book from netgalley for an honest review
Top reviews from other countries
The story is fast moving since Tacoma must find the person behind the killing of another law enforcer who was supposed to work with him. The area where he will find himself has no rules and no limits. The characters at times remind the reader of the local news in the newspapers with facts that actually happen every day in some parts of the world. Good reading!
All of the main characters from Deweys books are here and if you like these, then you'll love these
My only complaint is that the ending felt rushed, and could have been more drawn out. However, this is still a wonderful offering that only leaves you wanting more.