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Richard Marcinko, with the steady hand of Jim DeFelice on board,
has just dropped another Rogue Warrior novel on an unsuspecting
world. This one is titled VENGEANCE, and it is about what you've
come to expect from Marcinko and his co-author du jour. The
line between fact and fiction becomes somewhat blurred in these
books. Marcinko the author runs a number of companies that provide
private security, security analysis, and motivational training,
just like Marcinko the Rogue Warrior. There are a number of
scenarios in VENGEANCE involving mock terrorist test runs at
facilities that seem to be realistic enough, and as for the
rest…well, that's why it's in the fiction section,

The bottom line though is that you've got to love the guy. The
Rogue Warrior series doesn't pretend to be great literature; what
Marcinko and DeFelice do quite well, however, is tell a great,
great story, or series of stories with an overriding theme.
VENGEANCE, as with Marcinko's other works, is for guys who like
books. The language is either a hard PG or soft R, depending on how
you look at it. Marcinko, as his own alter-ego in the novels, also
keeps the politically correct blue pen away from his manuscript. An
unapologetic alpha-male, Marcinko tends to make his own rules,
whether in the heat of battle or relationships. And there are all
sorts of explosions, hand-to-hand combat situations, and other
mayhem within. So, I ask you, what's not to love?

Most of VENGEANCE concerns itself with Marcinko and his Red Cell II
team conducting security evaluations of high-profile facilities
that have the potential to be targets for terrorists. Marcinko and
Red Cell make it all look easy, though the warning "Don't Try This
At Home" should be plastered across each page. One thing this book
will do, however, is make the reader appreciate just how
(apparently) vulnerable such things as our modes of transportation
and utility facilities truly are, whether tested in quite the
manner portrayed here or not.

But Marcinko has a nagging, overriding concern in VENGEANCE.
Someone, an entity that Marcinko has nicknamed "Shadow," is after
him and taunting him at every step. One gets the feeling that this
is the equivalent of stepping on Superman's cape, or spitting into
the wind, or pulling the mask off the old Lone Ranger. You'll have
an inkling as to who is doing this fairly early on, but you might
be wrong.

All in all, VENGEANCE is a wild and adventurous ride. If you are of
a certain age you might find Marcinko's flat-out narrative style
somewhat disconcerting --- information flies at you from several
different directions --- but anyone raised with a video game system
in the house will have a lot of fun from beginning to end.

Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub on January 24, 2011

by Richard Marcinko & Jim DeFelice

  • Publication Date: May 31, 2005
  • Genres: Fiction, Thriller
  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Atria
  • ISBN-10: 0743422473
  • ISBN-13: 9780743422475