RoadTrip America

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Wild Fire, by Nelson DeMille & Scott Brick (Narrator)


Wild Fire

Where is John Corey when we need him? If the terrifying scenario described in Wild Fire is based partially on actual events, does that mean that there are anti-terrorism experts like John Corey? It would be hard to believe, but it's also hard to believe that responsible members of the government could plot to blow up an American city as an excuse to wipe out most of the Muslim world in apparent retaliation. Sent to find missing agent Harry Muller, John and his FBI agent wife Kate find themselves at the Custer Hill Club, an Adirondack hunting retreat owned by wealthy, rightwing madman, Bain Maddox. Although John's wisecracks seem to center on his fear of bears, his real terror is that Bain and his powerful friends will trigger a nuclear Armageddon.

In an introduction to the book, DeMille states that many of the agencies, acronyms, scientific principles and government practices are based on actual, verifiable intelligence. As he says, "This is a scary book for scary times." Perhaps, forewarned is forearmed in this case, because while the plot that he describes is chillingly sinister, it could only be enacted in secrecy, and, thanks to DeMille, the secret's out. John Corey comes to life with all his self-assured, irreverent, humorous, provocative bravado through Scott Brick's narration. DeMille readers have come to see John Corey as an ordinary man who accomplishes extraordinary feats, and Scott Brick gives him the perfect balance of hero and everyman.

It's tempting to try to guess what's factual and what is the result of the author's imagination, but the dialogue and plot are so engaging and engrossing that it's best to just sit back and enjoy the adventure. What an adventure it is! Set in the New York area one year and one month after 9/11, the memory of the tragedy of the World Trade Center is still fresh, but people are beginning to return to a complacent assumption of security. DeMille mimics that contrast by tossing the reader between the comfort and serenity of luxury accommodations at forest retreats and the stark terror of high-tech weaponry in the hands of powerful and influential sociopaths. Vacillating between comedy and anxiety in his comments, John Corey creates an alternating emotional current that adds an intense, electric tension to the book. This is a great listen-the plot, the characters and the narration make Wild Fire impossible to resist.

Ruth Mormon

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