A year and a bit after a bio-terrorism attack nearly set off an epidemic at the four busiest airports in America, Pakistani terrorists associated with the United Islamic State have a new plan to bring down the USA – a nuclear bomb. With a core stolen from the Pakistani military, and housing, reflectors and other components manufactured by sleeper agents in the US, the terrorists hope to fashion a bomb that will be set off in dramatic fashion, on New Year’s Eve in Times Square. Commander John Hart and his fiancee, Dr. Elizabeth Wilkins, are tasked with finding and disarming the bomb – or at least minimizing the damage it does – but can they succeed before tragedy strikes?
8 SECONDS TO MIDNIGHT is a solid representative of the terrorist-threat action novel genre. It has a courageous, patriotic American hero at its core, with a tragedy in his backstory to give him human interest. It has a beautiful, intelligent love interest, with the courage and loyalty needed to stand fast and refuse to flee from danger when she can offer help instead. It has fanatic enemies devoted to their cause, some of them simply misguided and others near-sociopathic representations of cold-hearted evil.
It has a dire threat to an American tradition, and a lot of action, danger, and adrenaline-pumping energy directed at solving that threat. And it has the usual morally problematic actions taken by American agents out of seeming dire necessity – but it’s all presented as necessary, because the threat is so very terrible. This is a great book if what you want is a vigorous, action-packed thriller with lots of suspense, dramatic last-minute acts of courage, and a clearly-defined right and wrong side, with no serious moral qualms or questions to distract. It’s a terrific beach or airplane read, a bit of mind-candy with which an action-adventure fan may pass a pleasant and distracting hour or two.
8 SECONDS TO MIDNIGHT is a thriller packed with energy, action, and suspense, which consistently delivers on the promises of the genre.
~Catherine Langrehr for IndieReader