Friday, August 9, 2013

Title:     Consent to Kill [Mitch Rapp, book 8]
Author:  Vince Flynn
Rating:  ★★★

One of the reasons why I love blogging about books is that I get to express my appreciation to the authors of books I enjoy. Sadly, the author, Vince Flynn, passed away before I could write about Consent to Kill. Vince's Mitch Rapp series is one of my favorites, and Mitch Rapp definitely one of the most intriguing characters I've come across. Consent to Kill is the eighth book in the series (how appropriate, I read this on the eighth day of the eighth month of the year!).

On the front lines of the global war on terror, CIA superagent Mitch Rapp races
to save one more life: his own.

An eye for an eye: that's what the powerful father of a dead terrorist demands
in retribution - and with his hate-filled plea, Mitch Rapp becomes the target
of an explosive international conspiracy.

The fearless operative has both killed with impunity and tortured to avert disaster, all in a battle to preserve freedom.

But even among America's allies, some believe the time has come to bring Rapp down.

Now the hunter is the hunted, and Rapp must rely on his razor-sharp instincts for survival - and justice - as he unleashes his fury on those who have betrayed him.

Mitch Rapp is one of the best (if not the best)  counterterrorism operative (meaning: assassin), and his exploits are quite legendary among those "in-the-know". He's disciplined, and no matter the situation, he is able to get out and do the job. Even though there are better fighters, stronger men, or more skilled with guns than Mitch, no one has his experience. Unfortunately, his cover was blown in one of the previous books so he has become quite the target of a lot of groups. He has earned begrudging respect, and even outright admiration, and most of all, fear among those who know him. His name alone can cause people in the know to blanch or to rethink their actions. Yep, he's that good. But he's not some mindless robot. He has a wife whom he really loves, and he respects the "kill no women and children" rule. He has no respect for authority, unless he respects the person, and he hates politicking. He has become a very good tool against terrorists, but politicians are afraid that his actions might bite them in the ass so they keep trying to control him...which is not something they should do!

Aside from Mitch, another one of my favorite characters is Irene Kennedy. She's cool, unflappable, understands how counterterrorist procedures could work on the ground while smoothing political turmoils. She's tough but she knows how to tread the waters, and knows when to push and shove. And man, can she get her way! She's awesome.

In Consent to Kill, an assassin agrees to kill Mitch Rapp, not just because of the money but more because of his ego. He's a good assassin and believes he can kill Mitch, with the element of surprise on their side. Unfortunately for him, Mitch is Mitch and he was able to survive the attack. However, Anna (and their unborn child) died. I'm not being mean, but it was obvious that she was going to be killed. She has no concept of secrecy and privacy, and is not concerned for her own safety. On the day that Mitch was going to have a knee operation, she called up her friends and family while on her car and gave them the specifics of their day. She didn't even think that her car or their house could be bugged. For a man like Mitch, whose very life depends on his privacy and secrets, she was a liability unless she learned to be as private as Mitch.

Anyway, Mitch wakes up in a rage (of course) and with Kennedy's permission, and secretly, the president, allows him to go after those who killed his wife. Well, of course, they couldn't really stop him. It's really cool that the other men whom Mitch worked with smoothed the way for him to go after his wife, even though it was a private matter and should have been handled by the courts. But of course they all knew it would never be solved.

One of the assassins had a change of heart and sent Mitch $5 million to beg for nine months before he comes after them. Nine months so she can give birth and at least hold her child for a moment before she dies. The assassins believed that it was their due to die by Mitch's hands since they inadvertently killed his wife and child. For me, the twist at the end of the story was just right and what I was hoping for. Well, I hoped that would be the end because I couldn't imagine it any other way, but Mitch being Mitch, I didn't really believe he could do it. I'm so glad he did. In the end, what Vince Flynn did was the right twist, the unexpected but hoped for outcome.

Consent to Kill is definitely a thriller, filled with heart-stopping action and suspense. It isn't the whodunit type of book, but every page and chapter was an enjoyable ride. R.I.P. Vince Flynn, I truly mourn your passing.