Review: Mission Critical by Mark Greaney

9780751569988A crisp, unpretentious action thriller packed with extravagant shootouts, in which the bad guys are the very worst, but the good guys are always that little bit better. In the world of action lit, Mark Greaney’s ‘Gray Man’ is up there Mitch Rapp, Jason Bourne and Orphan X.

Mission Critical, the eighth book in the series, sees Court Gentry — aka “Violator,” aka “the Gray Man” — involved in a CIA-sanctioned mission to stop a diabolical plot conceived by a pesky Russian sleeper agent, and a North Korean scientist, involving weaponised pneumonic plague and a meeting of the West’s key intelligence personnel. Aided by Zoya Zakharova and Zack Hightower, Gentry finds opposition in the form of not only weapon-wielding henchmen, but CIA and British Intelligence moles, too.

No points for subtlety, but Greaney knows precisely what his audience wants, and is more than happy to deliver. He is a writer of cinematic talent, whose pedal-to-metal style of storytelling will leave you breathless. It is the literary equivalent of sitting down to watch the latest Mission Impossible blockbuster.

ISBN: 9780751569988
Format: Paperback / softback (234mm x 152mm x 42mm)
Pages: 528
Imprint: Sphere
Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
Publish Date: 19-Feb-2019
Country of Publication: United Kingdom

Review: The Gray Man by Mark Greaney

9780515147018Mark Greaney’s The Gray Man is as satisfying as any wide-screen Hollywood blockbuster, its superbly choreographed and adrenaline-fuelled action scenes enhancing the thriller’s thin plot. It’s heavy on familiar tropes — the assassin with a conscious, spurned by his government overseers, now targeted for elimination by, well, just about every professional killer in the business — but this first book in a series that has now reached its sixth entry is fast and furious, and a sure fix for thriller junkies.

Court Gentry is known as The Gray Man in clandestine circles: a proven killer who moves silently from job to job, accomplishing the impossible, then fading into the background. But when a job goes awry, he finds himself up against impossible odds: a fleet of killers who will do anything to bring his head to their employer. Stripped of equipment and weapons, wounded and adrift, Gentry faces off against opposition forces in Prague, Zurich and Paris, pulling off miracle escape after miracle escape. Bashed and blooded, things come to their violent climax in a chateau near the Normandy coast.

Fans of Tom Clancy and Robert Ludlum in their pomp will find plenty to enjoy here. The Gray Man isn’t going to make new friends of the genre, but for acolytes, this is superb. It’s a blast.

ISBN: 9780515147018
Format: Paperback / softback (189mm x 110mm x 25mm)
Imprint: Jove Books
Publisher: Jove Books
Publish Date: 1-Sep-2009
Country of Publication: United States