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Reviewer Aaron Sterba

Aaron Sterba is a Research & Learning Librarian at the University of Central Oklahoma.


The Terminal List

This is a story or revenge and it had me hooked by the end of the first paragraph. James Reece, a Navy SEAL team leader, puts his skills to good use to track down anyone responsible for the death of those closest to him, and to see how far this government coverup goes. I didn’t want to put this book down, and as a result it was a very quick read; engaging and suspenseful, with accurate details on tactics and weapons. Carr’s real-world experience as a SEAL comes through in the writing, and it helps add authenticity to the book.

The story is told in real time with some parts as flashbacks or memories but is easy to follow. Jack Carr also highlights the psychological impact of war on the tip of the spear operators and helps bring the unseen trauma of brain injury into the spotlight. The dialogue is never awkward, and the decisions and actions of the characters are always reasonable given the plot progression. Carr offers a great commentary on his protagonist, James Reece, that introduces us to a character that is stronger, smarter, and much more capable than any one man could be all on his own, but in my opinion, that helps create a mythos that brings the character into legend.

Much like Lee Child’s Jack Reacher and Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan (and maybe even a less quirky version of James Bond), James Reece has carved out his place in this dark revenge story. You may have seen the Amazon Prime series of the Terminal List, but in typical fashion, the book tells so much more and brings us even deeper into the story.