Books & Literature

Book Review: The Tao Deception, by John M Green

Three months after The Nine Sisters’ attack, CIA agent Tori Swyft is implicated in the actions of a Chinese extremist group who are assassinating world leaders.

Back in August, I delved into the first Tori Swyft thriller, The Trusted, by John M. Green, in preparation for the release of his second Tori Swyft thriller (and 4th novel, overall), The Tao Deception.

It’s been 3 years since the publication of The Trusted, but in Tori time it’s only been 3 months since The 9 Sisters attack under the direction of Dr George Mellor, Swyft’s former mentor and the mastermind of this environmentally-motivated cult. In his dying moments, Mellor’s last utterance was to wish greater success for The 10 Brothers. In The Tao Deception, we meet them and discover their plans are even more devious than Mellor’s.

taodeceptioncoverThe Tao Deception opens with a flashback to a covert mission of Tori’s in Iran, before jumping forward to the present day. As the Pope sleeps, he is visited by a mysterious object which he takes for an Angel of the Lord, but is, rather, a Harbinger of Death.

Meanwhile, Tori is enjoying her favourite pastime, surfing, and meets White House Adviser Narthex ‘Tex’ Carter, who is also an avid surfer. Tex, like Tori, is called back to work following the online release of the Papal Assassination, recorded in the Papal Residence. As Tori rushes back to Boston to investigate the claim of the RUA (Rome Under Allah), a Chinese Muslim Extremist Group, that they are responsible and more will follow, her boss is also taken out. Further extremist action follows and President Isabel Diaz (first seen in Green’s Born to Run) begins a parallel investigation which implicates Tori as a subversive member of RUA.

The novel presents parallel and criss-crossing stories of Green’s powerhouse female characters, racing against time to stop an even more devastating global catastrophe than The 9 Sisters plot. Set against the backdrop of Chinese politics and economics, it’s a truly thought-provoking tale of what could be.

Green’s new novel is as fast-paced and action-packed as any by Robert Ludlum or Tom Clancy. His writing style, compared to The Trusted, has become more flowing and character driven, without losing any of his technical knowledge and factual input. He takes the character of Tori Swyft, as well as the reader, on a physical and emotional rollercoaster ride, with genuine edge-of-your-seat moments.

If you’re a lover of international espionage novels, you should not go past The Tao Deception – described by Green as “Today’s Conspiracy Theory…Tomorrow’s Reality”. Here’s hoping we don’t have long to wait for the promised third Tori Swyft Thriller.

Publisher: Pantera Press
Release Date: November 2016

Reviewed by: Glen Christie

Rating out of 10:  9

Published by: Pantera Press
Release Date: November 2016
RRP: $29.99

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