Saturday, February 18, 2012

Signs of War by Gerard de Marigny + Giveaway

Title:  Signs of War
Author:  Gerard de Marigny
Genre:  Political Thriller/Geopolitical
Publisher:  JarRyJorNo Publishing
Publication Date:  14th November 2011
ISBN:  9781466453852
Stand alone or series:   Cris De Nero Book 2
Pages:  328 pages
Book Received from:  Gerard de Marigny
First Lines:  Utilizing his cover as an official of the Puertos del Litoral Central, SA1, should have made it easy for CIA Agent Felix Salazar to board the Iranian cargo vessel Talca.

Beware: Possible spoilers if you haven't read The Watchman of Ephraim!

Former hedge fund manager, billionaire Cris De Niro and his new counter-terrorism firm, The Watchman Agency just prevented a nuclear attack on the city of Las Vegas, but not without cost.

Charley Santappia, the Agency’s Vice President of Operations sacrificed his life to save the city. While at Santappia’s funeral, a remorse-filled De Niro announces to his shocked staff that he needs to decide whether he wants to continue with their mission. In front of Santappia’s coffin, the squad leaders of The Watchman Agency’s paramilitary arm, ARCHANGEL, decide to raise one last toast to their fallen commander.

They’re joined by a ‘small man dressed in black’ who is something of a legend to members of the Special Forces. A Delta Forces hero turned rogue operative, respected as much as he was feared … enter Scipio, a very different type of warrior, but could he be the one to replace Santappia?

Back at The Watchman Agency’s headquarters, undercover CIA agent Felix Salazar shows up with a problem he brings to his old boss from Langley now the Agency’s V.P. of Intelligence Services, Michelle Wang. Salazar is convinced that Venezuela has just received a shipment of Iranian medium-range missiles and he thinks he’s tracked the missiles to a Venezuelan port closest to the United States.

De Niro and company decide to get involved, sending Salazar back to Venezuela to investigate with a fire team from ARCHANGEL as backup. There is also more strange activity at the border. Soldiers of Tuco Ramirez’s Pacifico Drug Cartel have been infiltrating en masse onto the Tohono O’odham reservation. This time, Bryan Ahiga head of the legendary DHS/ICE Shadow Wolves doesn’t have his border patrol unit to patrol the tribal lands, so he asks De Niro if his team could lend a hand.

At the same time, De Niro is contacted by his old friend, David Nicholls. The usually incorrigible British playboy is frantic. He just found out that his dear friends were kidnapped by Somali pirates aboard their yacht, and he wants De Niro and his people to rescue them. De Niro is hesitant to offer assistance, but Scipio proposes to take care of it, as long as he can borrow Santana, De Niro’s newly battle-equipped mega-yacht and her crew.

The Watchman Agency is spread thin and, once again, on their own! Cris De Niro & The Watchman Agency return to deal with Somali pirates, an imminent threat from an Iranian/Venezuelan alliance and a Mexican drug cartel’s plot of immense proportions. These are the SIGNS of WAR …

My Thoughts:
The second book in the Cris de Nero series has definitely outdone the first. I loved this book from start to finish. It's complex and full of technical jargon and with the footnotes to explain, it really comes to life.

Cris and his team embark on another adventure of high stakes, and include the cast from the first book as well as a few new additions to the team. Valued additions I might add too.

We're introduced to CIA Agent Felix Salazar right at the beginning and find out that he discovers something isn't quite right at a Port in Venezuela.  With his suspicions he contacts his superior and is told that he's not authorised to investigate it.  With this dismissal Felix decides to take things into his own hands.
While this is happening all the way over in Virginia Cris de Nero and his team are standing in the cemetery burying one of the valued team members.

As always I love how both The Signs of War and The Watchman of Ephraim are written.  Above each chapter it informs us where in the country/world this particular scenes take place, the time and the date, giving us a real good idea of what is happening when.

There was one paragraph that really stuck out for me though.  It's in chapter 2, page 9.  It goes through each of the watchman agency members and it includes their full name rank, nickname and which unit.  There was so much information that I thought my brain was going to have an overload!  Later on in the novel it got easier to identify who was who but I think this was a bit too full on for the average reader like me to remember.  I did remember some of the members from the first one but it was a tad bit full on.  BUT in saying that, that was the only issue I had.

Gerard de Marigny managed to wow me again with his second instalment in the Cris De Nero novel!  Not once did I feel I was reading a fiction book.  It was like I was there standing alongside the members of the team.  There's so much action going on all over the world including Venezuela, Virginia, Arizona, The Carribean sea, that it amazes me how much knowledge Gerard must have with different countries!  It certainly feels like I can actually see the places he describes.  It's awesome!

Fave Line:   "'Greater love has no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.'" Page 14, "Those containers are airtight.  We'll all die!" .. "I see your point." ... opened up with his rifle, spraying bullets through the two walls of the container.  "It's not airtight anymore."  I loved those bits.  Totally awesome!


Giveaway Time:

One Copy of Signs of War by Gerard de Marigny

Open International!
Closes 18th March 2011

All you need to do is comment below and check back on the 19th for me to announce the winner!!

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