Monday, December 22, 2008

Jenn's Review: Fault Line

Summary: In Silicon Valley, the eccentric inventor of a new encryption application is murdered in an apparent drug deal. In Istanbul, a cynical undercover operator receives a frantic call from his estranged brother, a patent lawyer who believes he is the next victim.

And on the sun-drenched slopes of Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley's nerve center of money and technology, old family hurts sting anew as two brothers who share nothing but blood and bitterness wage a desperate battle against a faceless enemy.

Alex Treven has sacrificed everything to achieve his sole ambition: making partner in his high-tech law firm. But then the inventor of a technology Alex is banking on is murdered... and the patent examiner who reviewed it dies... and Alex himself narrowly escapes an attack in his own home. Off balance, out of ideas, and running out of time, he knows the one person who can help him is the last person he'd ever ask: his brother.

Ben Treven is a Military Liaison Element, an elite undercover soldier paid to "find, fix, and finish" high-value targets in America's Global War on Terror. Disenchanted with what he sees as America's culture of denial and decadence, Ben lives his detached life in the shadows because the black ops world is all he really knows—and because other than Alex, who he hasn't spoken to since their mother died, his family is long gone.

But blood is thicker than water, and when he receives Alex's frantic call, Ben hurries to San Francisco to help him. Only then does Alex reveal that there's another player who knows of the technology: Sarah Hosseini, a young Iranian-American lawyer who Alex has long secretly desired... and who Ben immediately distrusts. As these three radically different people struggle to identify the forces attempting to silence them, Ben and Alex are forced to examine the events that drove them apart—even as Sarah's presence, and her own secret wants, deepens the fault line between them.

A full-throttle thriller that is both emotionally and politically charged, Fault Line centers on a conspiracy that has spun out of the shadows and into the streets of America, a conspiracy that can be stopped only by three people—three people with different worldviews, different grievances, different motives. To survive the forces arrayed against them, they'll first have to survive each other.

Review: As it is my first time reading Barry Eisler, I wasn't sure what to expect. I often have trouble reading books written by ex-military or ex-agents as they tend to get a little too heavy with technical jargon for me ~this is certainly not the case here! He does an exceptional job of keeping things realistic yet accessible. Though I must say that I saw where he was going with the plot, I really enjoyed how he got there.

Eisler convincingly writes from the viewpoints of the three main characters in this novel, a literary style that can be disengaging if not done well. Each of the characters has their own conflicting politics and belief system and Eisler has made each sympathetic to the reader: the profiled, the profiler, and the self-proclaimed family martyr. In the end, Sarah, Ben, and Alex have their core ideals challenged, and find those to which they formerly clung seem far from solid.

This is a fascinating read of espionage and modern political morals. A must-read for the spy fanatics. Look for it in stores March 10, 2009.

I'm definitely adding his Rain series to my "To Be Read" pile!



Unknown December 23, 2008 at 6:45 PM  

This will hopefully be in the mail when I get home after the holidays. Thanks for the review.

Serena December 29, 2008 at 10:02 AM  

Sounds good to me. I like books light on the technical!

Hut Landon January 7, 2009 at 12:48 PM  

Barry also deserves credit for making independent bookstores his first choice for buying his books on his website. He lists dozens of indies, mostly mystery stores, that sell his books -- a cool list!

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