Gitmo in Darkness: Al-Qaeda Strikes by Eric Wentz opens with carnage in the prologue, which constitutes the background upon which the story is built. The action takes place in the desert and the scene is beautifully captured in what looks like a promise of a great story that is ingeniously plotted and beautifully told, and it turns out to be one: “Like a dervish in the dance death descended out of the darkness of the desert, raiders whirled on their camels and horses, striking the encampment. The Bedouin tents flapped and fell upon the slaughtered like shrouds. One man dropped to the sand headless before his tent as his wife screamed in childbirth and her own death.” But a child is born at this moment, and what becomes of him is left for the reader to find out.
Lieutenant Commander Grant Chisolm has blood in his eye and, being a wounded man, he is determined to avenge the death of his father, assassinated by Islamist jihadists in 1980. As a liaison officer to Guantanamo, he is ineluctably pulled into the nest of the Taliban and Al-Qaeda, and finds himself racing against time stop a vicious and deadly terrorist movement ― with suicide bombers posing unavoidable threats to humanity. Follow this protagonist as he faces dangers, uncertainty and the prospects of annihilation as he gets enmeshed in a war that might be greater than him. But can he stop the terror before its fires consume the world?
Eric Wentz creates a world that powerfully depicts the war that has gone on for centuries ― the conflict in religion. The narrative is haunting, evocative of some of the powerful historical moments we have witnessed, featuring characters that are real, and exploring political and cultural themes that are as close to contemporary history as any can be. The prose is wonderful, highly descriptive, and filled with powerful imagery. The author’s gift for character is impeccable and readers will want to follow not only the protagonist, but sophisticated characters like Moustafa Arius Riat al-Haj, also known as detainee 9696. Gitmo in Darkness: Al-Qaeda Strikes takes the reader on a journey across countries, from the conflict-infested backdrops of Afghanistan and Pakistan to Guantanamo prison in Cuba, building a plot that feels real and that is filled with unpredictability. It is pulsating; a real page-turner for fans of terrorist thrillers.
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