|Jonathan Grave has an extraordinary job. He covertly rescues people. Moreover, he operates under his own system of justice. He does not go out of his way to abuse or kill people, but when he deems it necessary he does so without qualms. He does not so much operate in defiance of the police but rather, since his objectives are different, outside it. If it is necessary for some people to die in order that those objectives be fulfilled so be it.
For his services Jonathan is well paid. He has some military experience which is useful in developing rescue plans and he has connections which allow him to literally fly beneath the radar. He has handpicked his assistants, most notably, Venice (pronounced Ven EE chay) Alexander whose computer skills know no limit.
In this endeavor, Jonathan has been hired to find and rescue Thomas Hughes, the college age son of Stephenson Hughes. Thomas was abducted from his girlfriend’s home in Muncie, Indiana. He has been kept in a basement, naked, bound, and gagged. Jonathan has been monitoring the kidnappers with Venice’s help. When it becomes obvious that the kidnappers, fearful that their ransom demands will not be met, are considering killing their hostage, Jonathan must act rapidly and decisively.
At first blush, the plot of No Mercy seems straightforward, but as the action proceeds there are several layers and side issues making the scenario much more complex. Initially the author goes to great pains to carefully unveil his major protagonist giving his readers insight into the mind of Jonathan Grave. He is a complex man, not devoid of emotion, but decisive and quick to act in emergency situations, He is a man whom one would like to know better. His able assistant Venice, through her facility with computer systems teaches readers much about databases and how to exploit them.
The level of violence in the novel is quite high. This is definitely not one for the squeamish; initially the violence seems controlled, making it more palatable for the reader. It is necessary to drive the story. However, in the closing scenes one has to be into the macho hand to hand combat mode to appreciate the degree. The weaponry being employed is discussed in some detail as well as the mechanics of various modes of attack,
As one might expect in a highly technical thriller there are lots of acronyms. If the reader is unfamiliar with the terminology it might be worthwhile to make a list to keep it all straight. Several governmental agencies as well as private industry are involved in the plot and the interaction between these agencies might call for a road map.
In all if one is not adverse to graphic violence and enjoys action intricately devised and detailed, No Mercy will be an entertaining read. I enjoyed the complicated person that is Jonathan Grave. As his character is gradually revealed he seems like a decent individual and I can’t but admire his calmness in exceedingly stressful situations.