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Posted December 9, 2008
Robert Gandt has found another niche he can claim as his own: writing military thrillers. He has used what he knows with what he imagines in a superb combination of reality and art. Without burdening his text with technical descriptions, he carries his readers into the world of the military as naturally as if they were an invisible fly on his collar button. And in the air battle scenes, he succeeds in making readers feel they are experiencing virtual reality. You forget you're the reader and become the pilot. You feel the G forces, the rushing ground, the hair-raising near misses...you hear the mighty jet engines swooping and swooning...you see the target in your cross hairs and smell death. You feel your heart beating, your hands sweating inside your gloves, and you feel steely cool focused only on your target. Aside from his amazing ability to put you inside the story is the story itself--a story that may be closer to the truth than we care to imagine in the days of war now in Iraq. He portrays a cunning and skillful enemy you can understand and have to respect. Treachery, no matter who suffers as a result of it, is cause for vengeance, right or wrong, and we see forces equally motivated to devine that justice, which makes the outcome even more dramatic in its deliverance. What's even more admirable is his portrayal of women challenging a man's world: a war correspondent and a F-18 pilot. They do their jobs becuse they love doing them, not because they want to be distinct from the pack. And both women can't have their man. Even this rivalry is worked out the way real women would resolve it. Bob Gandt soars to the top of my favorite military novelists, and I hope to see Brick Maxwell and his Roadrunners along with broadcaster Claire Phillips on the USS Ronald Reagon in a TV series soon.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted December 10, 2002
Having thoroughly enjoyed the exciting drama of Gandt's first novel, With Hostile Intent, I eagerly anticipated this spell-binding sequel to Commander Brick Maxwell's daring exploits over the No-Fly Zone of Iraq. In Acts of Vengeance, Gandt takes the reader into the god-forsaken Gulf Of Aden where evil terrorist forces conspire to commit widespread death and destruction within the revered U.S.S. Ronald Reagan Battle Group. When Colonel Jamal Al-Fasr reappears to wreak mayhem upon the unsuspecting peace-keeping naval forces, Maxwell and his band of F/A Super Hornets vow to engage and destroy the enemy deep within the bowels of Yemen. Once again, Gandt has woven an explosive tale that is sure to stir the very heart of every American who continues to seethe with fresh remembrance of the unspeakable horrors visited upon our beloved homeland by Mid-Eastern terrorists. With a love for adventure and all things aviation, the writer has skillfully crafted a most engaging novel which I enjoyed immensely.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 12, 2002
Robert Gandt writes books as entertainment but never gives up an inch on technical accuracy or miltary procedure, and doesn¿t take forever to get to the point. The opposite of, say, Michener, Gandt gets the picture painted fast for the reader who doesn¿t have to go back ten pages to see what country he¿s in. And when the scene is set, stand back¿the action comes at you at afterburner speeds. In the tradition of Dirk Pitt, Jack Ryan, James Bond, etc, Gandt¿s "Acts of Vengeance" brings back Navy Commander Sam "Brick" Maxwell as a character readers of action books are learning to trust and look forward to `seeing¿ again in the next saga. (Maybe even an old saga; Tom Clancy is now revisiting Ryan in "Red Rabbit", a prequel to "The Hunt for Red October.) In "Acts...", Maxwell, just promoted to Commander and new boss of an F/A-18 Super Hornet squadron, is shocked to witness a murderous terrorist attack on the USS Ronald Reagan¿s top brass and an American ambassador. The plot thickens rapidly as an imminent attack on the carrier itself is expected. Soviet MiG-29s hidden in an underground Yemeni bunker, a stolen surplus Russian missile submarine, and a highly skilled terrorist fighter pilot, Colonel Jamal Al-Fasr, combine to draw the plot lines toward an explosive and action-packed resolution. Whether gut-wrenching dog fights or an excursion de force of 6G subsonic maneuvering in a winding canyon, Gandt puts the reader in the cockpit, controls and all, and lathers him with detail civilians seldom get to know. (During the canyon chase, following Al-Fasr¿s MiG, Brick is suddenly confronted with a choice between certain death smashing against the canyon wall or a near-impossible knife-edge maneuver through a stone arch formation. The decision, which has to be made in about a tenth of a second, raises the hair on your arms as you think you feel the scrape of rocks on wingtips, waiting for your airplane to disintegrate in a ball of orange flame.) Gandt is more than a budding Clancy. He actually flies these killer machines and knows the pulse and pace of a nuclear aircraft carrier from bow to stern. The result is a drama that reads true and through its `reality¿ draws the reader into a suspense-packed and not-so-imaginary exerience. A pilot¿s book to be sure, but much more. Gandt weaves in the inevitable politics, the black-hearted terrorist bent on revenge (shot down in Gandt¿s first Brick Maxwell story, "Hostile Intent") and, yes, intrepid female fighter pilots and war zone journalists that make men¿s hearts skip a beat and women want to enlist right now! Men will enjoy the no-bull story of America¿s fighter jocks and women will savor Gandt¿s genuine admiration and respect for the fairer sex. A great one- or two-sitting read.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted November 10, 2002
Put aside some time because you will not want to put this book down. The author¿s credentials include Navy fighter pilot, airline captain and air show pilot. He combines them to give us this riveting novel set today in the Red Sea aboard the aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan. Gandt weaves threads of treason, violence, love and international intrigue into a novel you don¿t want to end.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted March 23, 2012
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Posted August 4, 2013
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