The Insider Threat by Brad Taylor

Description: The United States has anticipated and averted countless attacks from terrorist groups—thanks in large part to the extralegal counterterrorist unit known as the Taskforce. But in The Insider Threat, a much more insidious evil is about to shatter the false sense of safety surrounding civilized nations. While world powers combat ISIS on the battlefield, a different threat is set in motion by the group—one that can’t be defeated by an airstrike. Off the radar of every Western intelligence organization, able to penetrate America or any European state, they intend to commit an act of unimaginable barbarity. Only Pike Logan and the Taskforce stand in the way of an attack no one anticipates, a grand deception that will wreak unthinkable chaos and reverberate throughout the Western world.

The Insider Threat by Brad Taylor is the latest Pike Logan thriller and it doesn’t disappoint. So topical it almost anticipates events, The Insider Threat continues a great series and delivers on what readers have come to expect from Taylor.

Back in the good graces, tenuous as they are, of the counterterrorist unit “The Taskforce”, Pike Logan and his team are tasked with tracking down “The Lost Boys”. The Lost Boys are a group of Americans who have joined ISIS. When a taped beheading captures a reference to “The White House”, officials fear an ISIS attack on the U.S. Government or its interests using American-born terrorists.

Taylor is near the top of the field when it comes to action thrillers in the vein of Vince Flynn and others. The action is top notch and the plots have complexity and depth. Where many authors of this type of book fail is in developing complex characters. While Taylor is better than most he has some of the same flaws. Pike Logan, for all his virtue, decisiveness and self-sacrifice really sucks when it comes to his treatment of the women he works with. On the one hand, he is full of professed admiration for their skill and abilities, yet he doubts them at every turn. He is uncomfortable with how the other team members view his relationship with his subordinate Jennifer in a way that she is not. He continually fails to look at things from her perspective. There is a mutual affinity with ex-Mossad operative Shoshanna and yet he expresses confidence in her followed closely by mistrust. I’ll confess that part of this distaste for Pike’s attitude comes from the narration in the audio book. With two narrators, the narration of the Arabic characters was especially well done. The narration of Pike, combined with the writing, made him come across as sullen.

Although 8th in the series, I think most readers can jump in with this book and not really miss much. Despite some concerns with the character development, The Insider Threat is a first rate thriller with great action sequences. Where it really stands out is in its topical and complex plot. Highly recommended for previous fans as well as any fan of action thrillers.

I was fortunate to receive an advance copy of this book.

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