Customer Reviews for

The Tehran Initiative

Average Rating 4.5
( 169 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(104)

4 Star

(36)

3 Star

(11)

2 Star

(11)

1 Star

(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 March 17, 2013

    Anonymous

    I loved it! Can't wait to read the damascus countdown.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 16, 2013

    Better than the first

    Started out slow but picked up in the 3 or 4 chapter. I could not put the book down from that point on. Riveting!

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  • Posted October 29, 2012

    Thriller!

    Enjoyed the suspense and a little romance in the story didn't hurt either. Rosenberg's novels are the kind you can pass on to your kids or religious friends without their being offended by objectionable material.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 20, 2012

    Dick Cheney and the religious nutcases use fiction 4 more war

    I want my money back

    0 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 29, 2012

    I read the first book in this series a year ago so I had a littl

    I read the first book in this series a year ago so I had a little bit of trouble remembering the details. I wasn't sure if I'd like this book because of the politics and the Middle East but I actually did. There is a lot of detail to keep up especially names. And if you're not familiar with Islam that also makes you question a lot of what’s going on. But overall I actually did enjoy the book and look forward to the next in the series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 27, 2012

    Good, up to the end

    I was about to give it 4 stars easy but the end just dropped off. There was not a clean ending. I was confused. But good. Not worth $10.

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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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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 31, 2012

    Called by some a 'modern-day Nostradamus', Joel C. Rosenberg's l

    Called by some a 'modern-day Nostradamus', Joel C. Rosenberg's latest novel, The Tehran Initiative, has been making headlines even before its release. The reason? The author's almost uncanny ability to write about events that become headlines.

    Recent events involving Iran, like the country's growing ability to produce nuclear weapons, and seeming involvement in assassination attempts are some of the issues Rosenberg addresses in The Tehran Initiative. What intrigues the media outlets is that he wrote the novel many months ago.

    My review:
    Rosenberg's seventh novel, like the previous ones, is fast-paced, suspenseful, and above all believable. It's easy to tell he's knowledgeable about the topics, the cultures, and the places, as the reader travels the world with the main character.

    David Shirazi is an American CIA operative of Iranian descent. His looks and language allow him to penetrate the Iranian infrastructure and become friends with prominent Iranians, the most important of which is an Iranian physicist, a secret Christian. Shirazi must get the physicist out of Iran and destroy the nuclear weapons being built.

    If you like gripping novels with espionage, world travel, and politics, this is the one for you.

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  • Posted July 23, 2012

    I began reading THE TEHRAN INITIATIVE, the second in the new fi

    I began reading THE TEHRAN INITIATIVE, the second in the new fiction series by Joel C. Rosenberg, with anticipation. It promised to continue the suspense built up in the first novel. It did deliver on the suspense; however there were parts that fell short. I know we are called to suspend belief while we are reading fiction. There were times though, the author slipped into the unbelievable by going too far.

    The presidential character-Jackson became a caricature. I found it singularly difficult to accept a president would be so weak and obstinate as to compromise national security.

    The other problem I had was with the way Marseille found out what David really did for a living. Again, it seemed far fetched.

    In general the author delivers a highly entertaining read that continues to be in step with current events, adding a dash of prophecy.

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  • Posted July 23, 2012

    The Tehran Initiative by Joel C. Rosenberg was exciting! A great

    The Tehran Initiative by Joel C. Rosenberg was exciting! A great sequel to The Twelfth Imam. It was fast paced and kept me on the edge of my seat.

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  • Posted July 11, 2012

    David Shirazi is back! And so is the other cast of characters i

    David Shirazi is back! And so is the other cast of characters in the second installment of Rosenberg's new political thriller series which could have easily been plucked from today's headlines. The Tehran Initiative sees the return of CIA operative Shirazi working undercover to foil the plans of Iran's leadership to initiate a pre-emptive nuclear strike against Israel. Shirazi equally plays his role well as a government operative working under the auspices of the CIA and under the guise of a telecommunications salesman for an international company, seeking to provide Iran with a new communications infrastructure for their new leadership, which has bas been essentially taken over by the purported Twelfth Imam, miraculously revealing himself as the long awaited Muslim Messiah. Reminiscent of a charismatic leader who is essentially handed over a kingdom, the Imam poses a formidable threat in many respects, not just politically, but to followers of assorted religions as well. Mandated by his government handlers, Shirazi battles not only his clearly identifiable enemies, but more importantly, his inner struggles to learn the truth of who really is the Messiah. A great addition to the series, and it was thoroughly enjoyed, particularly the analytic skills demonstrated by Shirazi's love interest, Marseille Harper, who discovers a secret about Shirazi which has a profound impact. Bring on the third installment Mr. Rosenberg!

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  • Posted July 10, 2012

    Can't wait for the next one!

    It's the sign of a great read when you find yourself (days later, and even after you've started a new one!) reviewing things and trying to reason them out in your mind. This was one of those books.

    In the sequel to "The Twelfth Imam", we rejoin CIA Operative David Shirazi and jump right back into the action, picking up immediately where The Twelfth Imam left off. The crisis continues to escalate. Even with nuclear weapons now in play, the White House is quite passive in their response to David's intel, and Israel is taking more and more action. David's life is further complicated by his mother's cancer, as well as his growing re-connection with Marseille.

    In a subplot, Dr. Malik (who David helped flee Iran) is now in a safe house in the US, but he is compelled to take to the airwaves as well as establish a Twitter account, sharing with his countrymen about his conversion and gaining tons of followers almost immediately. (I loved the several technology nods to social networking, even in a number of different countries, throughout the book).

    I can't wait for the next in this series, and I highly recommend both it and the first book, "The Twelfth Imam".

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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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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2012

    Exceptional !!!

    I could not put this book down!

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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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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2012

    Very good!

    Im absolutely hooked on this series! I was hooked on his last series as well. I wish he wouldn't take as long to publish each book, but its definitely worth the wait!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 15, 2012

    Fabulous!

    For those who havent read all his books, especially Epicenter where he explains the manner of biblical references and how he wrote the story line......it would be best not to judge. I work in a job where the things he speaks of are very plausible. I love how he writes and all if his bookswere page turners for me. I even wrote a disertation on the concepts of some of his books. I read his books so fast that i am left waiting for the new ones! Love his website too. Great author. Highly recommend if u are willing to think outside the box and be open minded. Joel R is not too far off from current and future events.

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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 April 6, 2012

    Another winner in the series!

    Those who have read previous books in this series will not be
    disappointed by another winner.
    Eerily true-to-life and in line with biblical prophecies, this fast-paced and detailed book is one you will not want to
    put down until the end.
    Thank you, Joel Rosenberg for "fiction" which sounds so
    real and is definitely timely.

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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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