Reviewed by Susan65
Title: The Last Enemy
Author: Christian Beck
Series: Agents of Influence #1
Genre: MM Contemporary
Length: 200 Pages
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: July 5, 2016
Available at: Amazon and Barnes & Noble
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads
Blurb: Highly decorated Delta Force operator and Iraq war hero Simon Monk loses everything when his romantic partner defects to Beijing after being caught selling US secrets to Chinese Intelligence. Monk is drummed out of the Army from the blowback but gets a second chance at a career when he is recruited into a covert group within the CIA.
Years later Monk’s latest assignment sends him to Cairo, where the head of station has disappeared amid a highly publicized sex scandal. But things are not what they seem. When the base chief turns up dead and the Egyptian government looks the other way, Monk and his team hunt down the assassin.
All roads lead to a ruthless and lethal cult from Egypt’s ancient past who discard every unwritten rule of espionage to win. Monk is forced to take to the shadows to find and destroy his most dangerous adversaries yet, as a chain of events threatens to ignite war in the Middle East.
Review: Simply brilliant story telling. I was first taken in by the cover, intrigued by the blurb, then blown away by the story. There are so many things I loved about this book, but what stands out the most is the realism. This book is brutal, violent and unapologetic. It is not pretty and the author does not glamorize the events or the characters. This is a book about survival and revenge, Special Ops and a military coup, but also a second chance at love.
Simon Monk is an elite spy who is trained to hunt, gather Intel, and eliminate the threat. His training in Special Ops, and his lack of fear, makes him lethal. Simon trusts no one; the fact that he is still alive is testament to his lack of emotional attachment while smiling in the face of death. His first lover, as told through the blurb, betrayed him in one of the worst ways possible. And the ramifications of that betrayal turned Monk into a man who lived solely for his job. When he did hook up it was without emotions or strings. Until Ben…
Ben is in love with Simon, and has been for years. These two hook up, on and off, before Simon just disappears and doesn’t ever call back. And then Simon requests Ben as back up for his next assignment. Ben is not a spy, at least not yet, but he is Special Ops and is as bad-ass and hardcore as Simon. Their reunion is the catalyst that begins an amazing journey through Egypt, that more than once puts our characters in grave peril…and I mean very, very close to end game. It’s during this trip, this top secret mission, that they slowly fall back in love, or in Ben’s case, falls even harder for Simon. Their love affair is secondary to this story, but also quite poignant and heart felt. I never lost sight of their blooming love. Ben and Simon, no matter how harsh the story turned, were integral to everything.
This is first and foremost a treacherous military mission strife with betrayal, the horrific loss of friends and colleagues, and determined men from both sides who risk everything to be the last man standing in a game without rules. I was captivated by the authentic setting, the history, and the completeness of every story line. There are moments of surprise when a friend is actually a foe, and a foe becomes a friend. The twists and turns are many, but the story never deviates, and the end result is one of the best written military romance stories I’ve read in a very long time.
I highly recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in espionage, violent battles, and a couple who learn to love and trust each other on the battlefield, and off. This book is the start of a new series, and it makes me wonder if we will see more of Ben and Simon or will the author turn in another direction. Either way, I’m along for the ride.
Overall Impression: It was amazing!
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*