Author: Brad Taylor

ISBN: 978-0-525-95491-0

Brad Taylor’s The Forgotten Soldier, ninth in the Pike Logan series of military thrillers, is a well-written, intricately plotted, character driven masterpiece of a novel.

Logan is a member of an “off-the-books” special operations unit tasked with taking on the most difficult of the asymmetrical terrorist forces targeting the US. Taylor weaves a believable, if complex, series of events into a compelling story.

Logan’s character is a complex one. In this story, he faces the difficult decision of tracking a fellow operator bent on avenging the death of his brother in Afghanistan. Those involved in the death are closely associated with an allegedly unaffiliated Middle Eastern Government. This government claims no official association in the terrorist groups in country, but evidence uncovered by the rogue operator shows otherwise.

Logan must confront his own demons from his personal descent into hell. The contrast and similarities between Logan and his goal contribute to the overall excellence of the narrative.

The supporting characters, the politics of diplomacy, conspiracies within conspiracies, shifting loyalties, and uncertain support add to the many-layered aspects of the novel. While these can be difficult to keep straight, it underscores the grey world these types of operations involve.

Taylor does a masterful job of bringing the reader into the action, feeling the tension, and wondering how things will turn out.

If I were to offer any criticism of the book, it would be generic to a common aspect of these special operator stories. In the book almost all the whiz-bang, hi-tech, sophisticated gear works perfectly. The timing of the various operations works almost perfectly. The plan works almost perfectly.

The reality of the world is that critical equipment fails at the precise moment it is most needed. Timing is off. Chance interferes.

I am sure, with Taylor’s military background, he can recount numerous times being frustrated with military equipment that over promised and under delivered.

However, with that said, Taylor introduces just enough imperfections into the narrative to make this among the most believable military spec ops thrillers.

This is the first of the series I have read. I intend to read the others. This, perhaps, is the greatest endorsement of a book and an author one can offer. I not only enjoyed the book but I am willing to invest my time, and money, in reading more by the same author.

I would encourage all fans of this genre to invest their own precious time in reading Taylor’s novels.