About the Author
Read an Excerpt
“Latent” has become part of the magical jargon. It used to mean folks who were channeling magic but hadn’t yet realized it. Now, everyone from the Unmanifested to the professional military Sorcerer is considered “Latent.” It’s the catchall for anyone touched by the Great Reawakening and a sign of how quickly we’ve adapted to this new reality. —John Brunk Staff Research Associate, Oxford English Dictionary
. . . coming to you live from the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC, where we have just been informed that a Selfer incident has collapsed the memorial with an unknown number of tourists trapped inside. A SOC intervention team is inbound and we will continue with regular updates as the situation unfolds . . .
—Alex Brinn, SPY7 News—Washington, DC reporting on the Bloch Incident
They want me to kill a child, Lieutenant Oscar Britton thought.
The monitor showed a silent video fed from a high–school security camera. On it, a young boy stood in a school auditorium. A long–sleeved black T–shirt covered his skinny chest. Silver chains connected rings in his ears, nose, and lips. His hair was a spray of mousse and color.
He was wreathed in a bright ball of fire.
Billowing smoke clouded the camera feed, but Britton could see the boy stretch out a hand, flames jetting out past the camera’s range, engulfing fleeing students, who rolled away, beating at their hair and clothing. People were running, screaming.
Beside the boy stood a chubby girl, her dyed black hair matching her lipstick and eye makeup. She spread her arms.
The flames around the boy pulsed in time with her motions, forming two man–sized and –shaped peaks of flame. The fire elementals danced among the students, burning as they went. Britton watched as the elementals multiplied—four, then six. Wires sparked as the fire reached the stage. The girl’s magic touched them as well, the electricity forming dancing human shapes, elementals of sizzling energy. They lit among the students, fingertips crackling arcs of dazzling blue lightning.
Britton swallowed as his team shuffled uneasily behind him. He heard them make room for Lieutenant Morgan and his assaulters, who entered the briefing room and clustered around the monitor, still tightening straps on gun slings and slamming rounds into their magazines. They loaded armor–piercing, hollow–point, and incendiary ammunition. Not the standard ball or half charges normally used on a capture mission. Britton swallowed again. These were bullets for taking on a dug–in, professional enemy.
The video went to static, then looped for the fifth time as they waited for the briefing to start. The boy burst into flame yet again, the girl beside him conjuring the man–shaped fire elementals to scatter through the auditorium.
Fear formed a cold knot in Britton’s stomach. He pushed it away, conscious of the stares of his men. A leader who voiced fear instilled it in his subordinates.
The mission briefer finally took up his position beside the monitor. His blue eyes were gray flint under the fluorescent lights. “It’s South Burlington High School, about seven klicks from our position. We sent a Sorcerer to check out a tip on an unreported Latency, and these kids decided to tear the place up once they knew they were caught. The local police are already on the scene, and they’re going to refer to me as Captain Thorsson. I’ll need you to stick to call signs. Call me Harlequin at all times.
“The helos are undergoing final checks outside, and you should be on deck to assault the target in fifteen minutes from jump. South Burlington PD and a company out of the Eighty–sixth have evacuated the civilians. We should have it totally clear now, so the order’s come down to go in and bring order to the chaos.”
“Looks like Pyromancers, sir?” Britton asked.
Harlequin snorted and gave voice to Britton’s fears. “You honestly think a fifteen–year–old girl would have the control it takes to move even one elemental around like that, let alone half a dozen? Those flame–men are self–willed.”
“Just great!” Private First Class Dawes whispered loudly enough to be heard by the whole room. “A Probe! A fucking Elementalist! Jesus fucking Christ!”
Warrant Officer Cheatham turned to his man. “So, she’s a Probe! Prohibited school’s no more dangerous than a legal one to a real soldier!”
“It’s okay, Dan,” Britton said, gesturing to Cheatham. Dawes was the youngest member of their team and prone to the histrionics of youth.
Britton could feel the terror in the room. Morgan shifted uneasily, drawing glances from his team.
“I don’t like it any more than you do,” Harlequin said, “but the law is clear. All Supernatural Operations Corps runs inside the United States must be integrated with regular army support. That’s not my call. That’s by presidential decree.
“But you are on perimeter, cordon, and fire–suppression duty. This is a SOC op, and you will let us handle the actual target.”
Target, Britton thought. So that’s what you call a fifteen–year–old girl and her boyfriend.
“What are you going to do, sir?” Britton asked.
“You gonna put a tornado down on ’em, sir?” Dawes asked.
The corner of Harlequin’s mouth lifted slightly. “Something like that.”
If anyone else had said it, the men would have laughed. But Harlequin was a commissioned Sorcerer in the Supernatural Operations Corps.
He meant every word.
“Sir,” Britton said, trying not to let his uncertainty show. “With my bird in the air and my boys on the ground, that’s not an acceptable risk. Copters and tornadoes don’t exactly mix.”
“Your concern for your team is noted,” Harlequin said, “but if you stick to your positions and do as you’re told, you won’t get hit by any stray magic.”
Supporting the SOC and taking on a Probe. Lieutenant Morgan’s voice finally broke, along with his nerve. “You’ve got to be kidding me.”
Britton felt the fear leap from the lieutenant to his troops. His own team was fracturing before his eyes, the terror eating into their professionalism. He knew he should be holding them together, but he had just seen kids burning to death in the halls of the very high school he used to attend. In a few minutes, he would be landing his team on the roof where he first kissed a girl, supporting a SOC unit turning its magical might against two teenagers.
The boy, they might take alive. Selfers were sometimes pardoned for past crimes if they took the oath and joined the SOC.
But the girl had no chance. She was a Probe, and only one thing happened to those who Manifested in Prohibited magical schools. They were gunned down or carted off, hooded and cuffed, never to be seen again.
“Sir, I just want to confirm that this is a capture mission, right?” Britton asked.
Harlequin shrugged. “Of course. Rules of engagement are clear: If they engage you, escalate to deadly force. Err on the side of protecting your people.”
“They’re scared kids, sir,” Britton continued. “Maybe they’d surrender? Have we gotten in touch with their parents to see if they can talk them down? I know it sounds silly, but . . .”
“It does sound silly, Lieutenant!” Harlequin cut him off. “And we don’t have time for hand–wringing right now. Those kids had a choice. They could have turned themselves in. They didn’t. They chose to go it on their own. Remember, you’re only a Selfer if you run.
“Now, any other questions?” Harlequin asked, glaring at the assembled teams.
There weren’t any.
“Good,” Harlequin said. “Get geared up and get your asses in the air. I’m jumping now. Morgan! You’re on the ground manning relief. Britton! You jump with me. Co–ords are already in the bird. I’ll meet you on target.”
He leaned in to Britton as he left. “Look, Lieutenant. The law may require me to take you along, but you keep your men out of my way and out of the fight. You’re not trained for this. And if I ever again catch you putting doubt in the minds of an assault force about to go hot, I will personally fry your ass.”
Harlequin threw open the door and leapt skyward, flying quickly out of view.
“Sir.” Dawes tugged Britton’s sleeve. “Can’t they get another team? I don’t wanna work with no Sorcerers.”
“They’re on our side, remember?” Britton forced a smile. Terror curdled in his gut. “SOC’s still army.”
Sergeant Goodman, carrying the support weapon for Britton’s team, snorted and nervously tapped the safety on her light machine gun.
“Sir, it’s a high school,” said Dawes, sounding high–school aged himself through his thick Arkansas accent.
“Selfers or not, they’re just kids,” Goodman added.
They’re reading my mind, Britton thought, but he asked “Why do we call them Selfers, Goodman?”
She hesitated. Britton took a step forward, glaring at her. She might have a point, but she had to believe in this mission if she was going to carry it out. They all had to. “Why?”
“Because they don’t think about how their magic puts others in danger,” she gave the textbook response. “Because they only think about themselves.”
“Absolutely right,” Britton said. “There are thirty–four American corpses buried in the rubble of the Lincoln Memorial because of kids like this! Who knows how many kids, hell, or even some of my former teachers, are down there right now? If you can’t do this, say so now. Once we go dynamic and hit that roof, I need everyone in the game. I give you my word; I won’t hold it against you. If you want out, now’s the time.”
He gave them a moment to respond. No one said a word.
Britton had to get his team moving. The more they stood around, the more the fear would take hold. “Okay, you heard the man, and you know the plan!” he called out. “Let’s show the SOC how the Green Mountain Boys get the job done! We’re going to be up to our assholes in elementals up there, so gear for it. Fire suppression for the pyro. There might be lightning elementals, too, so I want everyone to suit up in as much rubber insulation as the armorer will dispense. Move with a purpose, people!”
As his team hurried to comply, Britton looked back at the looping video and suppressed a shudder.
The world’s gone mad, Britton thought. Magic has changed everything.
Even if he wasn’t required to do the deed personally, he knew what Harlequin and his men intended.
Britton sat behind the helicopter’s controls and looked at the man floating in the sky.
Harlequin stood in midair, flight suit rippling in the breeze. Over a thousand feet below him, South Burlington High School glowed in the party colors of spinning police–car lights.
Behind Britton, four army assaulters looked down between their boots, dangling over the helicopter skids, shifting flame–retardant tanks and body armor out of the way for a better view.
Harlequin swooped down to land on one of the Kiowa’s skids, rocking the helicopter and forcing the assaulters to pull their feet back inside. The rotors beat the air over the Aeromancer’s head, stirring his close–cropped blond hair.
The assaulters looked nervously at Britton, and Warrant Officer Cheatham shifted in the copilot’s seat. Britton, at least twice Harlequin’s size, turned to face him. The Aeromancer was not impressed.
“All right,” he shouted loudly enough to be heard over the Kiowa’s engine, his blue eyes hard. “You’re to hold position here while we do our job.”
Britton’s brown skin concealed an angry flush. Harlequin might be a Sorcerer, but the assault order came down from on high for all of them. But the real rage came from the sense of relief. No matter how badly he didn’t want to do this, he still had to. Holding position would be tantamount to dereliction of duty.
“With all due respect, sir,” he called out over the whine of the rotors, “I have to follow the TOC’s orders. ’Big army’ has to run shotgun on this raid.”
“That’s crap,” Harlequin responded. “We’re not in the damned briefing room anymore, and I don’t care what Tactical Operations Command says. This is a real fight, with real magic. I don’t need regular pukes fucking it up. You will hold your position here until told otherwise. Is that perfectly clear?”
Britton sympathized with Harlequin’s desire to avoid unnecessary loss of life, but that didn’t change the fact that he’d flown onto Britton’s helicopter and insulted his team.
And it didn’t change the nagging feeling that if there was any chance at all those kids might be saved, Britton had to be there to make sure he saw it through.
“Negative, sir,” Britton said. “My orders are to accompany you to the target and deploy my team. That’s what I intend to do.”
“I’m giving you an order, Lieutenant,” Harlequin said through gritted teeth. He stretched an arm outside the helicopter. The brilliant stars winked out as shreds of cloud unraveled over the rotors, thudding against thickening air.
Britton’s stomach clenched as thunder rumbled, but did his best to look unimpressed. He toggled the cockpit radio. “TOC, this is support. Can someone put me through to Major Reynolds? I’m being ordered to . . .”
Harlequin conjured a gust of air that toggled the radio off. “Fucking forget it!”
Britton sighed and listened briefly to the radio static. “Sir, my orders come directly from the colonel, and last time I checked, he outranks you.”
Harlequin paused, his anger palpable. Britton gripped the controls tightly to keep his hands from shaking. He felt the tremble in the rudder pedals as the rotors spun up, slicing through the summoned clouds.
“We’re moving, sir,” Britton said. “Are you riding with us or with your own team?”
Harlequin cursed, dropped backward off the skid, righted himself, and flew off, outpacing the helicopter easily. The cloud cover around the Kiowa instantly wafted apart.
“Holy crap, sir,” Master Sergeant Young leaned in to shout over the Kiowa’s engine. “I’ve never seen anyone talk to a Sorcerer like that.”
“Seriously, sir,” Sergeant Goodman added. “The SOC don’t give a fuck if they get court–martialed. They’ll just zap you.”
“The army’s the army,” Britton said with a conviction he didn’t feel. “Latent or not, we all follow orders.”
“Thank you, sir. Seriously,” Cheatham said, “I wouldn’t want anyone talking to my people that way.”
Britton nodded, uncomfortable with the praise.
The Supernatural Operations Corps bird, another Kiowa, sleek and black, came into view as they descended. Its side was blazoned with the SOC arms—the Stars and Stripes fluttering behind the eye in the pyramid. Symbols of the four elements hovered in the corners representing legal magical schools: Pyromancy, Hydromancy, Aeromancy, and Terramancy. The red cross crowned the display, symbolizing Physiomancy, the most prized of the permitted schools. The banner beneath read: OUR GIFTS, FOR OUR NATION.
The high–school roof materialized below them, a pitted atoll of raised brick sides stretched with black tar paper. A single, brick–housed metal door led into the building.
Britton set the Kiowa hovering and nodded to Cheatham to take the controls. He turned to the assaulters.
“Okay. You all got the brief,” he shouted. “Two targets barricaded inside. Keep the perimeter secure and the fires under control. Remember, one Pyromancer and one Probe Elementalist.”
“They’re Selfers, sir,” Goodman said. “Why can’t we just bomb the building? Why’s it worth risking our lives?”
“Our orders are to take them down and bring them in for justice,” Britton replied. “If the rules of engagement change, and we have to kill them, then we will. Until then, we’re on a capture mission. Everybody square?”
It’s a damned lie, he thought. Those kids are dead. Harlequin has no intention of capturing anybody.
He made eye contact with each member of his team. None looked away.
Satisfied, he nodded. “Okay, double–check your gear and let’s do this.”
He barely had time to retake the Kiowa’s controls before the commlink crackled to life with Major Reynolds’s voice in the TOC trailer on the ground below. “Full element heads up! Support element, this is TOC. Go hot. I say again, go hot and prep for entry on target.”
“Acknowledged. Support element is hot,” Britton said into the commlink. “You heard the man!” he called to his team, “Weapons free and eyes on target!” He heard the click of safeties coming off on Dawes’s carbine and Goodman’s machine gun. Hertzog and Young hefted their flame suppressors. A quick glance confirmed the assaulters’ sighting down their barrels at the roof.
Oh God, he thought. I didn’t sign up to fight children. He tried to push his doubts away. The law was the law. You didn’t negotiate with unregulated magic users.
“SOC Element,” came Reynolds’s voice over the commlink. “This is TOC. Aero–1, sweep perimeter. Pyro–1, go hot.”
Harlequin dove from the SOC helicopter and rocketed around the school. A figure leaned out of the SOC Kiowa, pumping his fist. His arm erupted in bright orange fire.
Harlequin’s voice came over the commlink, “Aero–1 pass complete. All’s quiet. South Burlington police have the perimeter secure.” A pause, then, “Pyro–1 is hot and ready. SOC Assault–1 and –2 are good to go.”
“Roger that,” Reynolds said. “South Burlington SWAT has been kind enough to provide perimeter and entry from the ground. I’m patching them through now.”
A short crackle was followed by a thick New–England–accented voice. “This is Captain Rutledge with South Burlington PD tactical. Perimeter is secure. Students and faculty are clear, fires are out, and we’ve got the first two floors locked down. Your Selfers are above there somewhere. My men are withdrawn under sniper cover. You’re good to go when ready.”
“Roger that,” said Reynolds. “Okay, Aero–1. Your show. Call ’em out.”
Harlequin streaked over the roof and lit gracefully on the SOC helicopter’s skid. He reached inside and produced a microphone.
“This is Captain Thorsson of the US Army Supernatural Operations Corps,” his voice blared over a bullhorn mounted beneath the Kiowa. “You are accused of unlawful magic use in violation of the McGauer–Linden Act. You have thirty seconds to surrender yourselves. This is your first and only warning.”
The only sounds that followed were the roaring engines of the Kiowas.
“Christ,” Cheatham whispered. He had two high–school–aged girls of his own.
“We have to do this,” Britton said, his voice hollow in his own ears. “They’re walking bombs.”
Cheatham set his jaw, “They’re probably hiding down there, scared as hell.”
Dawes was scared as hell, too. Britton put his hand on Cheatham’s shoulder. “Dan. I need you focused.”
Cheatham didn’t look at Britton. “I’ll do my job, sir.”
“’You’re only a Selfer if you run,’ Dan,” Britton parroted Harlequin’s words. “They could have turned themselves in. They had a choice.”
Cheatham framed a reply, but was cut off by Reynolds’s voice blazing over the commlink. “All right! That’s it! Element! Go dynamic!”
“To arms, Pyro–1. Let’s smoke ’em out,” Harlequin’s voice crackled over the channel. “Spare the good Captain Rutledge’s men and light her up, stories three and higher.”
The Pyromancer stepped onto the helicopter’s skid, the bright fire extending to engulf his entire body. He raised his arms, and the flames curled in on themselves, shifting from red to orange to white. The air shimmered around them, then folded in on itself as the Pyromancer thrust his arms forward. The flames rocketed outward with a roar that competed with the helicopter engines.
What People are Saying About This
“Cross The Forever War with Witchworld, add in the real world modern military of Black Hawk Down, and you get Control Point, the mile-a-minute story of someone trying to find purpose in a war he never asked for.” –—Jack Campbell, New York Times bestselling author of the Lost Fleet series
“Control Point is Black Hawk Down meets the X-Men. Fast-paced and thrilling from start to finish...military fantasy like you’ve never seen it before.”—Peter V. Brett, bestselling author of The Warded Man
“Myke Cole takes you down range where the bullets fly and the magic burns with precision-guided fericity that’ll put you on the edge of your seat before blowing you right out of it.”—Chris Evans, author of the Iron Elves Series
“Hands down, the best military fantasy I’ve ever read; Control Point is a chilling, enthralling story. Myke Cole just might be a wizard himself.”—Ann Aguirre, national bestselling author of Enclave
“A debut by a former military officer that will attract readers who like their urban fantasies with more of a military edge.”—Library Journal
“High recommendation. A sold and entertaining novel, a real kick-ass premise/milieu … Cole has launched a solid series that I hope to continue reading, and he’s written a novel that starts the year off very strongly.”—SFF World
“A fun, fast-paced entertaining debut novel from a promising author…I wonder what Cole’s got up his sleeve for us next.”—SF Signal
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
This was a great read. I generally avoid fantasy set in the modern (or sorta) world, and never considered myself a military-anything buff. So Control Point was a very-pleasant surprise. I devoured the book in two days. Cole does a great job of building an alternative reality that’s believable and authentic. He sprinkles in fantastic nuggets of how the world we know and live in now would react to a subset of the population suddenly popping up with magical powers. He examines the political and social impact without ever moralizing or making a judgment. It would be easy to draw a clear good/evil line in a story like this and get preachy but Cole did none of that. All of this in the middle of taking us into a fully-realized alien world full of its own creatures and cultures and believable magic system. Cole not only seamlessly knit together a fantastical world with ours, but did it without you noticing. No long info-dumps, no boring explanations. Just great details drizzled in and among the action. This is a great debut and I’m thrilled to have found it. But because every book has its faults, I do have the following complaints: I couldn’t give Control Point five stars because Cole used one of my pet peeve writing techniques, internal monologue. I’ve gone on record before about how much I hate IM, but I know it doesn’t bother most readers so that’s probably neither here nor there to the majority reading this. I also agree with another reviewer who wondered when Britton would “man up.” At some point it began to feel like he debated a point with himself, only to forget the next day what he’d decided the day before. That said, neither of those annoyances were enough to override the imaginative plot and worldbuilding and the realistic action scenes. Definitely a recommended read. Enjoy!
If you can ignore the main character, SHADOW OPS: CONTROL POINT might be a great book. As it is, it’s a fascinating world with non-stop action that fights to overcome the indecisiveness of its primary protagonist. Oscar Britton has just completed a mission to eliminate a teenage girl who lost control of her magical powers when he develops magical powers of his own. Rather than turn himself in, he briefly goes on the run before joining a secret military operation in which he uses his newfound abilities to help the government establish a base of operations in a magical world referred to as the “Source.” Cole does a great job of developing this world and understanding what the sudden development of magical powers might mean to the military-industrial complex, and the characters around Britton are dynamic and engaging, with their own motivations and depths. Unfortunately, the story is built around Britton, and he proves problematic, spending the entire book questioning whether he wants to fight on the side of the government or go on the run and almost certainly be killed. When he’s first brought to the military base, he hates everything about it. Then he changes his mind. Then his commanding officer is mean to him and he hates the government again. Then he goes on a mission and loves it. Then he changes his mind again. Then he hates it again. It’s every bit as annoying as it sounds, and as I read I found myself wondering how Britton theoretically thrived in the military before he developed magical powers. He doesn’t like taking orders, he wants to be able to choose his own missions, he grows petulant when things at the base don’t run the way he believes they should — these don’t seem like attributes that would work in any form of military life. While Britton’s defense of the goblin contractors working on the military site works in terms of putting the reader on his side, most of Britton’s complaining comes across simply as that — whining. Nonetheless, it’s a fascinating world. I had trouble with some of the military terminology in the book’s opening pages — we open in the midst of a military op, and it feels like we’re thrown in the deep end early. Fortunately, it felt as though this got easier to understand as the book progressed. It wasn’t until after I finished the book that I realized there’s a glossary of military terms at the back — this would have been more helpful at the front of the book, but I certainly understand that’s not Cole’s fault. In all, I enjoyed the book. Cole has demonstrated the ability to write engaging characters, he just didn’t succeed with Britton. I’m looking forward to the second book in hopes that Cole fixes his “Britton problem” because the rest of the book is really quite good.
I enjoyed reading this book. I think it can be best described as Tom Clancy meets Gary Gygax. The premise of the book is a little shaky at first, with the author using in media res. But, as the first few chapters progress, the particulars are quickly covered. There is a definite flavor of Harry Turtledove in the alternate reality presented here. I look forward to the author's next release, as the ending presents a definite shift in the structure of the world.
It's probably not a good sign when the (argueably) most evil character in the book is the one I'm cheering on. The author does a good enough job with world creation (or alteration, given that it's a modern setting with fantasy elements added in) that it doesn't feel like X-Men with the numbers filled off. While most of the magic use does seem more like mutant powers than spell casting, there's enough to show that it is magic instead of "we don't know, it's magic, deal with it". My problem with it is that I don't think the author thought everything all the way through on some elements. He establishes that a person's emotional state is tied to how they control their magic, with stronger emotions making magic more powerful and more difficult to control. So the best way to deal with an out of control teenager that's just gotten their powers is by sending in two helicopters full of heavily armed soldiers. Repeatedly thought the story, the author uses the phrase "skill over will" to illustrate that it's better to be precise and well trained in the use of one's magic than to be flashy and out of control. And then, instead of having the military sorcerers start off fights with enemy spellcasters by blocking their access to magic, they start off with summoning lightning and throwing fireballs. Combined with the fact that ninety five percent of the characters can be either classified as "jerk" or "spineless", and I can't see myself ever picking up the next book in this series.
This book was so good I had a hard time putting it down. It wasn't predictable and was a believeable look into the future.
This book will become one of the books i read when i have nothing else to read, it just didnt grab me,
Four points for a book that earns 4 of 5 stars from me.First, I am not a military fiction fan ¿ it¿s technical in ways that make me run to the glossary or the internet to understand what I¿m reading so I found that part distracting. If you¿ve served in the military or even have a passing interest in things like guns and helicopters and military stuff this will be no problem at all. It took me a while to warm up to the book and the characters because of this.Second ¿ All that fighting really started to get to me. It¿s just not my thing ¿ nothing else to say about that. Except I suppose it¿s good I¿ve never been in the military.Third ¿ I gave this book four stars because by the end of the book nothing from numbers one or two mattered. I was so wrapped up in Oscar Britton¿s struggle to find his own way in life (trying not to spoil here) that I spent my afternoon reading the second half of the book non-stop.Fourth ¿ I loved the modern fantasy fiction feel of this book. Magic, military and modern day life made this book, in the end, a compelling read. I will definitely read the next book in the series (which is being edited right now, not sure of its publication date).
I have to thank Ace/Roc Publishing. They keep sending me books I wouldn’t normally read, but then end up really enjoying. I have never read a military ops book before. In bookstores, I would completely avoid that section, thinking of it as guy’s books. But I think any woman who enjoys supernatural stories, would really like this one. This book is really fast paced, and the quotes at the beginning of each chapter gives it a newscasting feel, which lends even more urgency to the book. The military operations are also quick. Get everyone in fast, take down the enemy, and onto the next mission. But while they were fast Myke Cole wrote them in such detail that it also felt like time had slowed down so the reader could perfectly see all the action that was happening. The protagonist, Oscar, starts the book out with everything in black and white. He knows who the enemy is, and his job is to eradicate them. That is until he comes across two teens that his team are supposed to kill. They do it, but he’s left with questions, and suddenly the world isn’t black and white any more. I can see how this would be frustrating to people who read books where the guy is a man’s man. Doing whatever needs to be done, never questioning anything, and getting the hot chick. But I think people who read Urban Fantasy, Fantasy, and even Romance will enjoy Oscar. While he does waffle back and forth, there is character development along with it. Not only of him, but of his teammates, and others in the special camp. There have been times when I just couldn’t finish a romance book because the main characters were; I hate you, I love you, I hate you, etc…. And while Oscar wasn’t having that feeling with a person, that is how he felt about his situation. And honestly I feel that way about my own job, and I think a lot of people do. As for the number one way I judge a fantasy book, the world building, Cole did an excellent job. The details for the camp and other worlds was amazing. And the natural inhabitants of those worlds were described wonderfully. We do get to know a bit about one of the goblins, Marty, which really enhanced the story. And the horse creatures that mocked you and then killed you really creeped me out. I’m looking forward to the next book in the Shadow Ops series, Fortress Frontier.
I finished it. But it was a struggle. The lead character was a bit too angst-ridden for me.
Loved the idea of magic back in the world. It was a great read
In Myke Cole's debut novel magic has appeared in the modern world. Goverments around the world strive to control and supress these new powers. Control Point follows U.S military officer Oscar Britton through this action packed story. The action scenes in control point are second to none. This is military fantasy at its finest. I'll be the first to admit that i was a little skeptical to read a fantasy set in a modern military, but from the start Myke's prose, realistic dialouge, and overall heart thumping action took over. This story really makes you think about a lot of issues going on in post 911 America. This book perfectly blends an action packed summer blockbuster with an in depth look at human rights, foreign policy, and the tricky balance between national safety and individual rights. ***also i must say seeing a fantasy story with scenes set in Vermont was really kick a$$.***
I love what Myke has created with this series, and after 2 books I am eager to see where he goes with it in the next installment. Seriously, get busy Myke, we're waiting! And the other thing - I think this series would make a fantastic movie or TV miniseries - given a decent budget. Some of the scenes from the books are incredibly vivid and are indelibly etched in my imagination. Overall I find it an excellent balance of drama, action, fantasy, and human strengths and fails on both an individual, and societal basis. Other than that, it's got nothing. ;-)
This was a very interesting book! It is the 2nd of a series and while it is not necessary to read the original book first, do yourself a favor and do so!
This was a pretty good novel with an interesting premise; there's magic in the world and it's been militarized by the world's big governments. And, while I wasn't in the military myself, I've known quite a few guys who were, and the military aspects of this novel are spot on! It's a novel idea presented in a good, fun, adventurous way. Worth getting!
I liked the theory, but didn't like where the story ended - looked like the next book would be darker - I mean it ended well, but they only won the day not the war maybe. left me a little depressed, so I have not planned to BUY the sequel although I had seen it first and was interested. Would check it out at the library though.
This is an excellent book, neatly combining contemporary fantasy and military action-- from someone who understand the modern military. I highly recommend it!
Pretty much nothing in this book worked out how I thought it would. It will take the next book to know if the betrayals will pay off. Or whether Oscar really is just an intractable bastard who should have gotten over himself.
I really enjoyed this book. Great blend action and fantasy which is also mature.
One of my favorite reads of 2012. The magic system is amazing, and very well-utilized throughout. The moral landscape created by the restriction of magic resonates with me as an X-Men fan, and I thought the main character's struggles between the way he thought the world should work and the situations he is pressed into were very effective. I'm very much looking forward to Fortress Frontier.