Praise for SEVERE CLEAR by Stuart Woods: "While Stuart Woods has proven time and time again that he's a master of suspense who keeps his readers frantically turning the pages, he has even managed to top himself with … see full wiki
A very good beach novel for some recreational reading...
Jul 8, 2013
It's been awhile since I visited the world of Stuart Woods and his Stone Barrington series. I found Severe Clear on the library shelves the other day while picking up some other books, and decided I'd grab it for some recreational reading. As I expected, it was a good story with a number of twists that kept things moving...
The story centers around the grand opening of a posh hotel in the Bel-Air area of California. Security is tight, as the presidents of Mexico and the US will both be in attendance to sign and announce a new agreement between the two countries. However, US intelligence picks up a stray mention of the hotel name in some Middle East chatter. Their surveillance is ratcheted up when emails are found that lead them to believe a planned attack is in the works, and the target is the hotel. Barrington and the CIA have to pull out all the stops to prevent what might be an attack on an unimaginable scale, and the trail is littered with dead ends, false leads, and hidden identities...
This is what I would consider the classic "beach novel". The story is well paced with familiar characters from prior installments of the series, and the tension continues to build throughout. Having read this while the whole NSA leaks story was playing out, it made the story line a bit more "true to life" knowing that this kind of information is indeed being gathered and monitored by intelligence services. It also made me wonder how often things like this are uncovered and prevented without any of us ever knowing.
If you've read any of Woods' prior Stone Barrington novels, you'll like this one. If this is your first exposure, you might not get the full nuances of some of the characters, but it will still be an enjoyable read.