no fortunate son book coverReviewed by A.D. Cole

In the seventh book in the bestselling Pike Logan series, Pike and Jennifer suddenly find themselves fired from the Taskforce, a super-secret organization that Pike has dedicated years of his life to. Kurt Hale, the man in charge of Taskforce operations, has just found out that his niece has gone missing. He can’t legally use government resources to find her, so he recruits Pike and Jennifer – now free agents – to do an off-the-books search and rescue.

In the meantime, several military relatives of high-ranking U.S. officials, including the Vice President’s son, have been kidnapped by an unknown terrorist organization. All of the government’s resources are being used to find these men and women, but it’s Pike, during his search for Kylie Hale, who stumbles onto the trail of the bad guys.

No Fortunate Son is an intricately plotted, high-action thriller, absolutely on par with Brad Taylor’s high quality of storytelling. This story was a little different from previous books in two ways. First, the villains weren’t quite as villainous as, for instance, the drug cartel in The Polaris Protocol, or the deadly female suicide bombers in The Widow’s Strike. The ticking clock is still there, so the action is still fast-paced and urgent. The villains were simply not as scary.

And second, Pike and Jennifer are usually working with their whole Taskforce team. But in this situation, the team is being used as a government resource while Pike and Jennifer are off freelancing on their own. This had a positive effect in that it showed a strengthening of Pike and Jennifer’s partnership. But I admit, I missed having Knuckles, Brett, and Retro around for the first half of the novel.

Still, I have no complaints. This was another action-packed thriller from probably the best current writer in the genre. If you’re new to political thrillers, I recommend Brad Taylor as a starting point. Who better to describe high-tech, high-octane military operations than a former Special Forces commander? Beyond that, these books stand out from the genre due to the very real, very relatable characters. Even Pike, who should be a larger-than-life superhero, is made approachable by Taylor’s down-to-earth writing style.

As a side note, I have to applaud these books for their feminism. Generally in these types of books, the female character is introduced in order to give the main character motivation, and usually she’s killed off within a couple of books. Jennifer has continued to evolve and is as much the main character in these stories as Pike is. She was put through the ringer in No Fortunate Son, shouldering more responsibility and risk than ever. I truly appreciate Mr. Taylor for breaking free of convention and giving us an awesome female lead character.

I recommend this book to readers of action and adventure novels. You don’t have to read this series in order, but it helps to get background on Pike’s motivation. Plus, they’ve all been amazing.

Rating: ★★★★☆ 

A.D. Cole is a homeschooling mother and aspiring romance novelist. She lives in the Ozark foothills and spends her free time reading, writing, baking and pondering life’s little mysteries.

Review copy was provided free of any obligation by Penguin Group. No monetary or any other form of compensation was received.