Reviewed by Caleb Shadis

Black List was a fun action-packed book; a great spy-thriller. This is the 11th book in the series and while I think it will be fun to go back and read the previous books, they certainly are not necessary. There is plenty of background supplied.

Scot has finished a mission and has just arrived at the safe house in Paris when he is suddenly attacked by gunmen. Scot is able to escape and does his best disappearing act but he has no idea who tried to kill him. When he feels he found a safe hideout he attempts to contact home base only to be met with silence.

Turns out Scot’s boss is having his own run in with the same people and needs to play dead for a couple days. His bodyguards were killed and his house set ablaze in the middle of the night, with him in it. Some powerful people are making a power play and Scot’s group is an unknown that needs to be cleaned up before the show starts.

There was one big mistake the main character shouldn’t have made. He is a highly trained field operative. He was on the run because of a failed attempt on his life by an unknown antagonist group at an actual safe house. He goes to ground to hide, regroup and figure out what is going on. He needs to contact his boss. So what does he do? He gets an internet connection, and routes his path through a dozen different servers to make it harder to be traced back to his physical location. This is great tradecraft. Then he connects to his boss’ account and since there is no immediate activity, he waits to be connected online FOR AN HOUR! What may I ask was the point of going through all the different servers to hide if you are just going to wait for them to track you back to your lair? Stupid, stupid stupid.

Other than the one complaint, I really did enjoy Black List quite a bit. I plan to start at the beginning and read them all. This one did have some scary things about what is happening and what can happen should our government decide it wants to start tracking its citizens more closely. It has a good warning message that more people really do need to be a little worried about.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

Caleb is a software engineer and amateur woodworker living in southern Minnesota. He has more hobbies than he has time or money for, and enjoys his quiet time reading.

A review copy was provided free of any obligation by Emily Bestler Books. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.