Mysterious Book Report No. 502

by John Dwaine McKenna


If you’re into reading about action-adventure, high-wire, death-defying and suicidal combat missions, Armored (Berkley, $28.00, 512 pages, 978-0-593-43687-5), by Mark Greaney, is the perfect novel to wind up your summer reading season with.  It features a nice guy named Josh Duffy, who’s in a desperate situation.  He’s a kick-ass military contractor who lost his left leg on his last mission a few years ago.  Now, he works as a rent-a-cop in a suburban Virginia shopping mall.  Barely able to eke out a living and feed his family—he’s unhappy and unemployable as a hired gun because of his prosthesis—and he’s getting more despondent by the day.

Then, by chance, Duffy runs into an old acquaintance, a fellow mercenary who tells him of an upcoming mission, body guarding UN dignitaries on a peace mission to recover sixty stolen shoulder-fired stinger missiles in the hands of one of the Mexican Drug Cartels.

Concealing his artificial left leg, Josh hires on with a notorious outfit, who, in spite of their poor reputation, has been contracted to protect the delegation tasked with retrieving the missiles and bringing peace to the beleaguered region.  Then, high on a ridge called the Devil’s Spine in the rugged Sierra Madre Mountains of western Mexico, the home of the infamous and deadly Black Knights Cartel, Duffy learns the real goal of the mission.   He’s been tricked.  Now he’s trapped, with three different Cartels closing in for the kill, as Duffy and the remnants of his team try to navigate their way back to safety against overwhelming odds.  The gun fights never cease, the plot twists never stop and the treachery is world-class in this kinetic and electrifying yarn we can only hope is the start of a new series!!!

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