Redemption: (Ryan Drake: book 1): a compelling, action-packed and high-octane thriller that will have you gripped from page one
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Towards the end, when Drake's pursuers suddenly switched to being his rescuers without any obvious prompt, and in spite of the clear contradiction offered at the very start of the novel, I was half expecting the sort of happy ending whereby the mastermind is brought to justice and all his victims (direct and indirect, those who survive, at least) get the second chance they're after. Thankfully, Redemption didn't disappoint on that score, with the implication of a longer game to be played through later books. Weirdly, it reminded me a lot of Dumas' morally grey ending to The Three Musketeers, which has never once been faithfully adapted to the movie/TV screen.
Will Jordan - Book Series In Order Will Jordan - Book Series In Order
The story is skillfully told and it's a captivating read, yes, but at the same time the events unfold in a way that's seldom surprising. Many of the plot twists are quite easy to see coming from afar, and there's not much that's genuinely new, original or surprising in the storyline. Sometimes the characters are made to do uncharacteristically stupid mistakes for the sake of drama, such as a badly wounded character forsaking their gun and being taunted into a fistfight with a much stronger opponent, even though the same character is supposed to show their enemies (and this one in particular) no mercy.For me the story is all about the changing relationship between Drake and Maras. To begin with he’s deeply distrustful of her, which soon gives way to anger and resentment as things begin to unravel for him. Gradually however he begins to see the humanity in her, and the two of them form a bond of sorts through their shared experiences. It’s not exactly a cosy friendship, as the end of the novel proves, but it’s definitely intense. Redemption is a fast paced action thriller, told from multiple points of view, with interesting locations and characters that complement each other nicely. Interaction and banter between the main characters is generally fun and enjoyable, even if unoriginal at times. There are no dull moments in this book, and it's paced in a way that it's hard to stop reading - or, as in my case, listening. Immediately scoped out the second book and will be buying it when I've finished typing this review.
Redemption: (Ryan Drake: book 1): a compelling, action-packed
To be honest, I was more intrigued about Drake's team members than the heavily featured Maras, and it was often the interaction between the side characters that kept the story interesting. Maras could've been great if she weren't depicted in such an unrealistic way, and to me this feels like a missed opportunity to create a truly interesting and strong female character. She would've been equally impressive but much more believable had she prevailed through her conflicts through resourcefulness and deception instead of physically dominating everyone regardless of size or strength. After graduating high school he moved on to university, gaining an Honors Degree in Information Technology. To support himself during his degree he worked a number of part time jobs, one of which was as an extra in television and feature films. Cast as a World War Two soldier, he was put through military boot camp in preparation for the role. Redemption is never less than fun to read but, unfortunately, it's enjoyable in much the same way that cliché-ridden action-oriented TV shows and movies are still fun to watch, even if you end up yelling at the screen every time a character makes a predictable and easily-avoided poor decision to ramp up the drama, or something unexpected happens purely for expediency rather than because it makes sense.Ryan Drake, the main character, works for the CIA as a Shepherd – a special operative who finds and brings home lost agents. In Redemption he’s handed the task of breaking into a seemingly impenetrable Siberian prison and rescuing an inmate identified only as Maras. Things seem to go well, until a phone call from a disgraced CIA agent and former student of Maras forces Drake to go on the run with her.
Redemption: Ryan Drake, Book 1 (Audio Download): Will Jordan
Before saying anything else I feel necessary to point out that I'm not very familiar with this genre of literature. However, I do enjoy good storytelling and well written characters, and as the author's work and insights on his YouTube channel ("The Critical Drinker") oft resonate with me I decided to give his first book a try, and listened to the audio version of it. Somewhat ironically, considering how I got interested in reading this book in the first place, my biggest gripes have to do with the characters and the story itself. He lives in Scotland with his wife and two sons, and is currently writing the next novel in the Ryan Drake series.
Will Jordan is better known as The Critical Drinker on Youtube, but he's also a successful author of spy novels. This is his first effort, and it's not bad. Sadly the tone of the characters is not always consistent, and several moments that are supposed to be emotionally important come too soon or are otherwise underdeveloped. The closer we get to the ending the more most characters seem to start following a typical Hollywood formula with all the clichés you may find in generic action movies, along with lines we've all heard uttered before. In any case, the book is written well enough and the story is compelling enough to keep the reader hooked. I certainly see Redemption as the first step in a complex overarching story that will develop over the course of five books. There are an awful lot of unanswered questions at the end, both for Drake and Maras, and the next four books will see both of them searching for answers – sometimes together, sometimes apart and sometimes against each other.