Smell the Cordite, Feel the Muzzle Blasts….
I don’t read much fiction – mostly I only spend my time with non-fiction military history. So trust me when I tell you this thriller is a first-class great read. Marcus Wynne’s No Other Option has been out for nearly a decade and there is a sequel as well — Brothers in Arms which links the hero of No Other Option with the hero of Warrior in the Shadows — so this is first in a series of three.
No Other Option is a page-turner of a novel, packed with realistic up-close and personal gunplay and urban combat, high body counts, and exploding cop cars. If I didn’t already know the author personally I’d be completely blown away and wondering where this guy has been hiding…
Wynne’s story is about a spec ops NCO who “goes off the reservation” and is incarcerated in federal prison. Schooled in the art of military mayhem as a trained killer, Jonny Maxwell, the villain, was once a high-speed, low-drag special operations soldier. Unfortunately, Maxwell had one serious flaw: he was an insane serial rapist who liked to listen to tape recordings of his crimes while on his military missions.
Here, Wynne has created a real scumbag of a bad guy and a seriously formidable individual. Some one you want to blow away yourself. Jonny escapes from Leavenworth with the intention to wreak as much havoc as possible and make a major “score” on his way out of the country. In his wake is a bloody trail of mayhem and carnage. Tops on his list for revenge is his old friend and protégé, Dale Miller, who testified against him.
Miller is sent by his commander in Special Operations Command to assist the Federal Marshals in hunting Maxwell down – and if necessary, exterminating him with extreme prejudice. Miller wants to capture Maxwell and return him to prison, but you just know that ain’t gonna happen.
He embarks on this mission with his trusty MP-5 submachine gun and a bag of tricks. He links up with some cops who are mistrustful and to keep things steamy, a Twin Cities homicide detective named Nina Capushek. Nina is a tough, capable female who, like Miller, thrives on danger, adrenaline, and a life on the edge. They deal will several cops and Federal Marshals, who view Miller as an adversary and someone to mistrust. Further complicating matters for Miller is another “operator” sent to shadow Miller and to kill Maxwell if Miller can’t do the job.
No Other Option is a standout amongst thrillers. Written by an “operator” it brings a taunt, action-packed story from the shadowy world of covert operations into the bright light of federal law enforcement. It’s so technically accurate and realistic the cordite will sting your eyes and the muzzle blasts will make you flinch. I read this book in one sitting.
It has garnered recommendations from Stephen Coonts, David Morrell, and John “Lofty” Wiseman.
Why is it so good? Maybe because Marcus Wynne is the real deal: a former grunt who patrolled the Korean DMZ as an original member of our North Korean Hunting Club. An ex-82nd Airborne trooper, he later became a Federal Air Marshal. He led a counter-terrorist Air Marshal team during the Gulf War and was later hired as a private consultant to train the South Africa Police Services’ hostage rescue team and Nelson Mandela’s Presidential Protection Unit.
He’s also a serious martial arts “player” and a skilled gunfighter. So if you’re tired of reading books where the author doesn’t know a 9mm from an entrenching tool, rest assured this book is accurate. Wynne gets it right, without boring you with arcane technical details or Clancy-esque techno-babble. And there’s rumors of a movie deal — hopefully they’ll make it into an action adventure movie without messing up the BTDT accuracy.