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Unless Mr. Clancy does like R Ludlum and continues to give us scads of posthumous material (I do love covert-one, btw, better than the real Ludlum, actually...), this is it. I've read or listened to every Jack Ryan/JR Jr./and John Clarke book. The Jack Ryans are my all-time favorite thrillers, and John Clark had to grow on me. Jack Jr I was enjoying initially but it was getting a little tiresome as the books were sort of becoming just name-the-terrorist and pick-a-spot-on-the-globe. Nevertheless I decided to give this one a chance, and I'm very glad I did.
This is such a fitting send-off because the book is well-balanced between the Jack/Jack Jr./Mr. C. story lines. Though three decades into the saga, this book brought all three into a nice globally and temporally intersecting story. There is some flashback which gave us important backstory we didn't already know and took me at least to a comfortable place in the storyline, since I really still like Jack Sr-of-the-past best.
I have a sense of closure. And if the series continues Ludlum style, I'm all ready to enjoy that too . . . now. And I can't wait for the movie (due out in a few days) !!!!
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
I wanted to savor, cherish, and adore this book as it is the last we will receive by Tom Clancy. But I also want to be true in reviewing it.
Here are the great Clancy characteristics that Command Authority has:
Complexity with a great ending:
Clancy is the master in writing extremely complex political tales that come spinning into an ending that leaves you breathless.Command Authority has that.
Wild and totally believable tales:
Not a detail was left out. At one point, Ryan senior uses an umbrella in a scene, and in the scene before that, Clancy specifically writes about Ryan borrowing the umbrella from the door man. Too many "action" authors miss that kind of detail. But it's that genius writing that makes all the wild scenes purely enjoyable.
Facts and details:
I always finish a Clancy novel feeling like I learned a bunch. This story delivers on that.
An obvious love for the subject matter:
Once again, Clancy's knowledge of military life and international travel and characters come through, which makes him so credible and this story great.
The Clancy characteristics that are missing from Command Authority:
Total clarity and super smooth flow. This book gets confusing. With going back and forth in time between Sr. and Jr. and the way the chapters are labeled, I got lost more than once, especially right in the middle of the book. I was just starting to tire of the feeling of not knowing what was going on, and then in the last 25% it got back on track and was easy to follow.
A love for the original characters:
Some of the characteristics that made the world LOVE Jack Ryan, weren't played up and weren't revisited. I don't grow tired of hearing how suave he is, and how super human and yet perfectly down to earth he is. I wanted to fall in love all over again, and a little bit of that was missing.
I don't know how much of the book was written by Mark Greaney. I searched for some information on that, but none could be found. We can only guess why exactly this book felt a little different.
Phillips as the narrator only gets four stars because he has a lilt to the way he finishes each sentence that works in interpersonal/conversational scenes, but is weird and a little distracting during the action scenes. Most of the time though, he's great.
Clancy fans will read/listen to this book no matter what, I know I was going to. With that said, I really do recommend this book.
76 of 82 people found this review helpful