A suspenseful, professional-grade geopolitical thriller, which features all the action and intrigue readers of Daniel Silva and Charles Cumming demand.
The Deceivers, the twelfth novel in the John Wells series, is actually my first, but certainly won’t be my last. Although its premise and archetypes are bracingly familiar, this is an expertly packaged globe-spanning thriller, with plenty of page-turning propulsion and a dangling climax that makes Berenson’s next book a must-read.
The Deceivers opens with small-time drug dealer Ahmed Shakir fooled into participating in a terrorist attack at a Dallas baseball game, which sees him, and hundreds of others, killed in a mammoth explosion. President Vinny Duto summons ex–CIA agent John Wells to travel to Bogotá, Colombia, to investigate a lead on the attack. It’s clear Wells and Duto have a long history — obviously explored in earlier books — and I can’t wait to delve backwards to see what’s lead to their shared animosity. As Wells investigates, Senator Paul Birman, the greatest threat to Duto in the next election, is seeing his popularity spike as he spits after the Dallas attack. But Birman’s success is fundamentally down to the intelligence of his cousin Paul, a decorated war veteran and, it turns out, a spy for the Russians. Meanwhile, former Army sniper Tom Miller is compelled by the beautiful newcomer to his life, Allie, to utilise his deadly skills on targets of her choosing. All these loosely-connected threads eventually tie together in a bloody, pulse-pounding conclusion.
Alex Berenson’s The Deceivers is grand entertainment, intricately plotted, and timely.