Customer Reviews for

The Tehran Initiative

Average Rating 4.5
( 168 )
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5 Star

(103)

4 Star

(35)

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(12)

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(7)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

The exciting action-packed story line grips the audience from the onset and never slows down

In Tehran, CIA agent David Shirazi enables the Islamic Republic of Iran's highest ranking nuclear scientist Dr. Najjar Malik and his family to escape to the United States (see The Twelfth Imam). However Shirazi remains in country undercover as he continues his inquiry ...
In Tehran, CIA agent David Shirazi enables the Islamic Republic of Iran's highest ranking nuclear scientist Dr. Najjar Malik and his family to escape to the United States (see The Twelfth Imam). However Shirazi remains in country undercover as he continues his inquiry into the actions of Muhammad Ibn Hasan Ibn Ali who claims to be The Promised One Mahdi. He has told millions of euphoric Muslims that he will with Allah's blessing re-establish the Caliphate and rule the world with an iron fist in peace.

Shirazi's fears that Iran is going nuclear are affirmed when the country tests an atomic weapon. In Jerusalem, the Americans try to calm the anxiety of the Israeli leaders who fear a nuclear attack followed by a holocaust that will exceed WWII. The debate inside the Knesset is adopting the Bush Doctrine of First Strike by taking out the Iranian nuke facilities. Waiting for the anticipated attack will lead to Israeli annihilation; first strike will lead to a Holy War. Shirazi and his unit must disable the nuclear warheads that Iran possesses before either enemy takes the first strike attack.

The sequel to the frightening The Twelfth Imam continues the alarming premise that The Promised One will unite the Muslim world in a fundamentalist Caliphate that will not remain passive but take the war to the enemy infidels. The exciting action-packed story line grips the audience from the onset and never slows down as Shirazi and his team try to prevent Iran going nuclear. Although the hero's ability to avoid direct fire starting with the Malik scenario is miraculously implausible, fans will appreciate the world on the brink warning story line with a strong subplot involving Shirazi's spiritual awakening.

Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on August 30, 2011

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Most Helpful Critical Review

6 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

good political thriller

Let me begin by admitting I know little to nothing about the sects of Islam or their beliefs. I am not overly aware of Mid-East politics or policy. And, although I am Christian and have a good understanding of the Bible, I am not in any way a scriptorian. In other words...
Let me begin by admitting I know little to nothing about the sects of Islam or their beliefs. I am not overly aware of Mid-East politics or policy. And, although I am Christian and have a good understanding of the Bible, I am not in any way a scriptorian. In other words, I am likely the epitome of the readership for this novel. It is Christian Fiction and there are lots of references to Biblical prophesy throughout the book. Technically, this is a very well written book. The writing style is strong and flowing. Joel Rosenberg hooks the reader from page one and the story flows effortlessly from there. I have not read the first of this series and I did not at any time feel like I was missing out. 'The Tehran Initiative' reads well as a stand alone book. Although I am sure the character development began in the first novel of the series, there was no hesitation, on my part, in getting involved with the characters in this book. The author has included a list before the story that explains who each character is and where they fit in the intrigue. I have said it before and I'll say it again - I love it when authors do this! I had no trouble keeping up with the characters while reading but it was nice to know there was a fall back if I needed it. The main character of the novel is David Shirazi, a CIA operative working undercover in Iran. As a sub-plot, David struggles to balance his loyalty to his country and job; his devotion to his family and his desire to have a 'normal' life and family of his own. His struggle is palpable. It was heart wrenching when he had to leave his parents for the assignment which is central to the story. Although essential to the plot, the one problem I had with Mr Rosenberg's novel was the portrayal of Islam and the Islamic people as either naive followers or outright evil; the nemesis of the Christians. I am sure there are followers of both religions that feel this way but I am not one of them. It is a peeve I have with a lot of Christian fiction that the purpose of the books seems to be more to convert than to educate, enlighten and edify. I certainly felt this was true of 'The Tehran Initiative'. It would have appealed to me more if the story had been kept, while at the same time weeding out some of the 'Bible thumping'. Often the scriptures referred to in the book were interpreted in ways I was a little uncomfortable with. (again I would point out that I am NOT a scriptorian) Overall, 'The Tehran Initiative', is a strong, compelling political thriller. My husband has been chomping at the bit waiting for me to finish so that he can start. It will be interesting to get his take on it.

posted by LetsBookIt on October 20, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2011

    Recommended

    Interesting and exciting story for those who enjoy adventure and spy novels. The story line seems to parallel the current world situation.
    For me however, there appeared to be too much prophesizing.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 21, 2014

    Excellent

    Rosenberg is great!

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  • Posted July 25, 2013

    Fun read.

    The Tehran Initiative is the middle book of a trilogy. Each stands on it's own but I highly recmmend reading all three books. The first book is The Twelfth Imam, the third book is The Damascus Countdown. All three books involve the fast paced adventures of a CIA agent in the Middle East and revolves around current news events. It's hard to put any of these books down.

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  • Posted April 16, 2013

    This review is my honest opinion and I was not paid for this ser

    This review is my honest opinion and I was not paid for this service.

    The Tehran Initiative was a captivating thriller that will keep you on the edge of your seat. This is one book that I could not put down as I had to know what was going to happen next. Reading this book like others written by Joel C Rosenberg makes you wonder if it is all possible. Many of the events that transpire in the book are also real live events going on in the world today. Although real life does not end in the way that it does in his books, they are very plausible in what could very well transpire one day.

    The Tehran Initiative continues where The Twelfth Imam left off. Mr. Rosenberg's writing style allows you to pick up and read and still know what is going on without having read any of the others in the series. I like how Mr. Rosenberg pulls you into the story as though you are really there. His descriptive writing style allows the reader to be able to picture every moment of the story. He has wonderfully developed characters that Mr. Rosenberg allows the reader to fall in love with.Mr. Rosenberg's vast religious knowledge, current event knowledge and cultural knowledge helps to make the story not only enjoyable, but believable.This book will leave you not only thinking, but wanting more.

    I recommend this book to anyone who wants not only a good read, but enjoys a fast-paced Christian thriller with tons of action.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 19, 2013

    Slightly preachy but good

    A little close to ruining a great thriller with oddly religious bias. Good read though.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 24, 2012

    Excellent

    As good as the first (The Twelfth Iman). Looking forward to the next in the series.

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  • Posted June 27, 2012

    Follow Up Novel to The Twelfth Imam

    David Shirazi is back with more secrets than ever. After successfully extracting Iran's top nuclear scientist, David is confronted with a race against time as he desperately tries to track down missing nuclear war heads and top political operatives while following the events happening in the rest of the world and at home.

    In this sequel to The Twelfth Imam, more details are revealed as we continue to learn what is really going on in this alternate future where the new leader of Iran is reestablishing the Caliphate and nuclear armageddon is looming. The plot is redolent with details, and the author does a masterful job at tying up the loose ends and eliminating possible plot holes.

    However, while the first book was definitely action driven, much of this book is stuck in committee, focusing on dialogues between characters that I sometimes had trouble keeping straight. The politics in this novel are as confusing as in real life, and everyone may or may not have a double motive.

    Violence is here again in plenty, including shootings, beatings, water boarding, other forms of torture, earthquakes, bombings, and what not. The descriptions are not overly graphic, and the fast pace of the novel keeps you from dwelling on these disturbing scenes too deeply. In fact, most of the characters don't seem to be too shaken either. At one point in the story, when a main character finds himself tortured by supposed allies, he finds himself almost immediately back at work without any seriously debilitating pain or trauma. In the author's eagerness to move on with the story, perhaps he sacrificed the reality behind what it means to have human beings purposely inflicting severe mental and physical pain on other human beings, and in the process lessened the sense of reality the book worked so hard to create.

    Religion continues to be a central theme, specifically Islamic mythology and conflict between Islam and the rest of the world, including Jews and Christians. Evangelism begins to play a crucial part in the plot, as does reading the scripture, prayer, and faith. The author does a good job in keeping these aspects relevant to the story and characters, rather than laying it on the top like an artificial veneer.

    There are no notes in the back of the book citing Mr. Rosenberg's sources and inspirations. This is something included in the first novel which I sorely missed in this sequel.

    I'd recommend this book to a reader who enjoys the spy thriller genre but also has the patience to wade through pages of explanatory dialogue where nothing terribly exciting happens. This book requires a significant time and patience investment to finish, but finishing rewards the reader with another installment in a very good suspense series. Thumbs up.

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  • Posted June 1, 2012

    David Shirazi is on a big mission for the CIA--To enter Iran onc

    David Shirazi is on a big mission for the CIA--To enter Iran once again, find information on the nuclear weapons the Iranians are building, and stop a possible war.

    This novel continues where the previous one, The Twelfth Imam, leaves off, yet it would be understandable even without reading the prequel, as a segment of the previous novel is included, and various recaps are offered throughout the book. However, reading the prequel does offer further character development.

    I read this book in three days, which is probably a record for me with a book this big. There were parts of the book that were a little tedious and boring for me (political speeches, etc.), but most of the time it was hard to put down, and easy enough to understand for a layperson like me. There is some violence and torture, so if you are squeamish, or don't believe in such things, you might not like this.

    I like that this book is based on some truth, and that it inspires us to speak out for the faith and be concerned for the souls of others.

    There are a few things I didn't like, such as the appearance of Jesus, though at least His words were in keeping with the Bible (basically direct quotes). I don't believe Jesus will come to earth again until after the tribulation (and in the air before the tribulation). I also wondered at the use of deception/lies in some cases, though the characters were admittedly sorry to have to deceive their family/friends. During wartime/espionage, I think I can go along with deceiving, which is what was usually the case in this story.

    All in all, I enjoyed the book. It made me think more about the world around me, not just my little corner of the world, and the possible future. I look forward to the sequel.

    I was given a complimentary copy by Tyndale Publishers, and I have given my honest review.

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  • Posted April 29, 2012

    Very Highly Regarded!

    We are delighted to learn about this writer, and will read lots more of his books. We first read "The 12th Imam", and couldn't wait to get our hands on the next book, "The Tehran Initiative." Both books breaktaking in the connection with our world today---just what IS going on in Iran, and how does it affect Israel......and therefore the US.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 18, 2012

    Plausible and Relavent

    Rosenberg does it again. It is a great sequel to The Twelfth Imam but repeats much of the former. It is not necessary to read the former first as so much of it is repeated in this book. However, the suspense of the former is greater if read first. Is that convoluted enough? We you'll get it once you have read them. Have fun and absorb the message.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 15, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Actiona Packed Goodness

    A fast paced thrilling book! Plotlines run close to the headlines of today. Fun to read, action packed and good characters in a clean, christian themed novel that is at it's core, really kinda scary.

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  • Posted December 17, 2011

    Very good reading with a very timely and interesting story

    I've read each of Joel Rosenberg's novels. When a new one is published I know I can count on it to be lively, interesting and timely. In view of the Middle East situation today, this is a great plot, written by an author who knows the area very well.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 2, 2011

    Highly recommended - worth reading.

    Better than the first one. Very intertaining.

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    Posted October 30, 2011

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