Saturday, June 6, 2015

Without Remorse ... without a doubt a good book

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Tom Clancy's book Without Remorse is a good read.  The book is part of the Jack Ryan canon but its focus is on another character in the Ryan universe - John Kelly, a/k/a John Clark.  The novel also introduces us to a younger Admiral Greer (most know as a character played by James Earl Jones in The Hunt for Red October; Patriot Games; and Clear and Present Danger) and Robert Ritter (also seen in Clear and Present Danger). In addition to Greer and Ritter, the avid reader will notice Emmet Ryan, a Baltimore Detective, who is the father of Jack Ryan.

Without Remorse takes place in 1972-73 and has two parallel stories - one in Baltimore and one in Vietnam.  John Kelly/John Clark is involved in both story lines; although, most of the focus in on Baltimore.

The character of Kelly/Clark is well drawn by Clancy with a convincing backstory along with a development of his character through tragedies and his response to them.  The title of the book applies to Kelly/Clark's response to those tragedies.

Having read plenty of thrillers from Vince Flynn to David Baldacci, this story of Clancy is not an old yarn and contains many surprises.  However, the one plot twist in the novel is telegraphed early on.

Overall I recommend this novel as a great summer read.  Although written after several other Jack Ryan novels it is the first in the chronology of the Ryan universe.  If you find the novel in your travels, then grab it and give it a go.

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