Okay, so I’m on a Matt Reilly kick – actually I am reading anything I can find in the boxes piled up still, and he was on top. But I will soon switch gears to some YA from the library. This is my second reading, the first in 2007. Again, I loved this book. The second in the Shane “Scarecrow” Schofield series (The first was Ice Station, set in Antarctica), this one is set in a mysterious government facility in Utah, called Area 7, where classified work is being done. Along for the ride is “Mother,” a 6ft. 2″ giant of a bald headed woman, who is a gunnery sergeant, and Libby “Fox” Gant, who has just begun dating Scarecrow, so called because of twin scars down his eyes (he wears mirrored sunglasses as a result). This time around, because of the notoriety from the Ice Station business, he has been assigned to Marine One and the President’s detail. The President is visiting Area 7 and 8, both classified, and as they enter the facility, Scarecrow gets a spidey sense that all is not well. Within minutes he is proved right, as a rogue element of the air force stationed there announces the plan of it’s leader, a convicted treasonous former AF Colonel, to televise a hunt for the President in the facility, six levels of it. If he dies, huge bombs will be set off in 14 airports strung across the Northern US. He wants a pure white southern America. As they race against time, and a much larger foe, it takes all of Scarecrow’s considerable cunning to elude the captors, follow the “rules” set up, and protect the President. Once again the story is replete with exclamations and italics, like “blasted” and “crashed,” etc. It is a characteristic of Reilly’s books, esp. the earlier ones, and while it does remind me of the old Batman and Robin show, the book is what it is – pure action, adventure, with a dose of humor, and lightheartedness thrown in. Reilly doesn’t take himself seriously, and if there is limited character development (I think, having read all his books once, and working on a 2nd reread that that is not entirely true – it is just spread across the books, as it is with Jeremy Robinson and James Rollins), it is more than made up for in his stated purpose of action, action, action. It’s a romp, a delight, and improbable at best, but what fun. I find myself giggling with glee. Where else can a 55 yr old woman get the thrill of a Sydney Harbor Bridge using Maghooks? And find guns with 900 rounds a minute? Only in Reilly’s books.
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