Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Book review: Next to Impossible by Scott White


"It had felt so right to be in Mac Callaghan's arms. His promise to meet her for dinner seemed so genuine. So why was it, less than twelve hours later, Hope Crosby was listening to Mac’s voicemail telling her he was going out of the country on business. Really? Couldn’t he have come up with a better excuse than that? She couldn’t believe she had been conned again. This guy seemed so different, so quietly confident, honest and strong. And so damn handsome!

Forty-eight hours later, off the coast of Malaysia, Mac gazed into the darkness as he prepared to fast-rope from a helicopter to the slippery, pitching deck of a small freighter. It was up to him and his team to rescue a woman who had been kidnapped by pirates in the Strait of Malacca. The pirates didn’t know they had kidnapped the daughter of the U.S. Secretary of State−yet. Mac and his team raced against the clock to save her. If they failed, she would disappear into the horrifying world of human slavery and prostitution in Southeast Asia.

As he looked down at the ship’s wake, he wondered for a moment if he would ever see Hope again. At this point, the odds didn’t look too good. He thought about the way her eyes sparkled when she smiled. Then he regrouped and dropped down the fast-rope into the darkness."

"Next to Impossible" is a fast-paced military-romance novel that is built on a very solid core. Many books I've reviewed have a few unnecessary tangents, but White's novel is plain and simple which is a good thing. There were only one or two scenes that may be able to be cut, but even then there's no reason to. That's something I look for in a good book, and White delivered on that. There are some issues with the book, unfortunately. There's quite a bit of head-jumping, sometimes within the same paragraph, and at times it detracts from the book. Some readers may have an easier time with it than I did, but I haven't seen many books written with so much jumping.

It may be because White is a retired Naval Officer, but it was nice to see a more realistic military operation in a novel. Most of the time you get the movie version, where things are exaggerated, and you have the cliché lines and kung-fu moves of the soldiers. It was methodical, straight-forward, and without what I would consider excessive violence. It was one shot, and they were down. I think that's a really good way to describe the book as a whole: methodical, and straight-forward. And the romance in the novel gives it the extra edge, and gives Mac something to come home to after his mission.

Overall, this is a decent book that just needs a bit of work to make it a bit more readable. But if you're looking for a solid book with some awesome military scenes, this is it. I can't say many books have such a firm foundation as this one.

Buy the book on Amazon

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