“IN THE IRANIAN seaside city of Bandar Abbas an elderly man shuffled down a dusty street in his dirty white djellaba, a simple robe like garment that flowed from his shoulder to his ankles. A brown turban covered his head and face; a pair of worn leather sandals, his feet. The wind blew in off the Persian Gulf, and the night sky was filled with thick clouds.”
“The decrepit old man mumbled to himself in Farsi, the native language, as he went. Like so many things in his life, appearances could be deceiving. Underneath the rugged turban and djellaba was one-hundred ninety pounds of solid, lean muscle. Mitch Rapp, a thirty-one-year-old American, hadn’t showered in a week.”
While reading Lethal Agent, the words above from Transfer of Power came to mind, these words, written by Vince Flynn introduced Mitch Rapp to the world. This is what I consider “classic” Mitch Rapp, being in a hostile environment, blending in, and doing what he does best, kill. In Lethal Agent, Mitch Rapp does just that. Finding himself behind enemy lines, being hunted. So, what does Rapp do? He turns the tide, evens the odds, the hunted becomes the hunter and Rapp does that better than anyone in the world.
This particular scene where Rapp finds himself in a jam, being hunted and on his own turns out to be over almost before it began. Leaving a huge void in wondering what happened. But, Kyle Mills does not disappoint, just a short while forward the events that took place are described in great detail from another perspective, the bad guys. For over two decades now, these jihadists have seen Rapp as a mythical “angel of death” and in this scene he brings death to them in huge numbers, further raising his persona, with the terrorist assholes describing Rapp as:
“This isn’t hardship for him, it’s his home. He’s spent his entire adult life fighting in places like this one. He could live out there for weeks. Perhaps months.”
This was absolutely epic in my opinion. Rapp on his own, no backup, no food and water, barely any ammunition left.
Vince Flynn was also very good at writing politically motivated scenes, and with a presidential election on the horizon in Lethal Agent, the pressure intensifies from opponents playing dirty in order to win. With Kyle Mills promising to bring us a “classic” Mitch Rapp novel, the brutal fighting here may lack bullets and blood. But the battles lines are drawn early on and the pressure is only intensified when aspiring politician use their influence to further their own grasp on power. What comes to mind here is Vince Flynn’s Memorial Day, where Rapp goes toe-to-toe with then White House Chief of Staff, Valerie Jones. In Lethal Agent, Rapp’s reputation on the home front is tarnished and these politicians eat it up and throw fuel on the fire.
My review has only covered a glimpse of the great read Kyle Mills delivers in Lethal Agent, an absolute classic Mitch Rapp novel that is a throwback to the legendary Vince Flynn. I am sure long-time fans of the series will love this new Mitch Rapp novel. With non-stop action, political conflicts and a terrorist plan that threatens millions of people, this novel will keep you at the edge of your seat.
Author: Kyle Mills
Publisher: Atria / Emily Bestler Books
Release Date: September 24, 2019
Follow Kyle & Vince Flynn’s social media page on Twitter: @KyleMillsAuthor & @VinceFlynncom
Lima Charlie Rating: A BLAST RADIUS OF: A NUCLEAR BOMB (10/10) – The potential here is death on a global scale, nothing is scarier than a nuke. This is the best rating a book can get.
About the authors
The fifth of seven children, Vince Flynn was born in St. Paul, Minnesota, in 1966. He graduated from the St. Thomas Academy in 1984, and the University of St. Thomas with a degree in economics in 1988.
After college he went to work for Kraft General Foods where he was an account and sales marketing specialist.
In 1990 he left Kraft to accept an aviation candidate slot with the United States Marine Corps. One week before leaving for Officers Candidate School, he was medically disqualified from the Marine Aviation Program, due to several concussions and convulsive seizures he suffered growing up. While trying to obtain a medical waiver for his condition, he started thinking about writing a book. This was a very unusual choice for Flynn since he had been diagnosed with dyslexia in grade school and had struggled with reading and writing all his life.
Having been stymied by the Marine Corps, Flynn returned to the nine-to-five grind and took a job with United Properties, a commercial real estate company in the Twin Cities. During his spare time he worked on an idea he had for a book. After two years with United Properties he decided to take a big gamble. He quit his job, moved to Colorado, and began working full time on what would eventually become Term Limits.
Like many struggling artists before him, he bartended at night and wrote during the day. Five years and more than sixty rejection letters later he took the unusual step of self-publishing his first novel. The book went to number one in the Twin Cities, and within a week had a new agent and two-book deal with Pocket Books, a Simon & Schuster imprint.
I grew up in Oregon but have lived all over—D.C., Virginia, Maryland, London, Wyoming. My father was an FBI agent and I was a bureau kid, which is similar to being an army brat. You tend to spend your time with other bureau kids and get transferred around a lot, though I fared better on that front than many others.
One positive aspect of this lifestyle is that you can’t help but absorb an enormous amount about the FBI, CIA, Special Forces, etc. Like most young boys, I was endlessly fascinated with talk of chasing criminals and, of course, pictured it in the most romantic terms possible. Who would have thought that all this esoteric knowledge would end up being so useful?
I came into writing from kind of a strange angle. When I graduated from college in the late eighties, I had the same dream as everyone else at the time—a corporate job, a nice car, and a house with lots of square footage.
It turns out that none of that really suited me. While I did go for the corporate job, I drove a beat up Jeep and lived in a tiny house in a so-so Baltimore neighborhood. Most of the money I made just kind of accumulated in my checking account and I found myself increasingly drawn to the unconventional, artistic people who lived around me. I was completely enamored with anyone who could create something from nothing because I felt like it was beyond me.
Enter rock climbing. I’d read an article on climbing when I was in college and thought it looked like an incredible thing to do. Someday, I told myself, I would give it a try. So one weekend in the early ’90s, I packed up my car, drove to West Virginia and spent a weekend taking lessons. Unknown to me at the time, this would be the start of an obsession that still hangs with me today. I began dating a girl who liked to climb and we decided we wanted to live somewhere with taller rocks and more open space.
Moving to Wyoming was the best decision we ever made. The place is full of the most amazing people. You might meet someone on a bike ride and find out they were in the Olympics, or climbed Everest, or just got back from two months trekking in Nepal. In a roundabout way, it was these people who made it possible for me to write a novel. They seemed to have no limitations. Everything was possible for them and I wanted to be that type of person too.
I was working for a little bank in Jackson Hole, spending my days making business loans and my afternoons and weekends climbing. For some reason, it finally occurred to me that I’d never actually tried to be creative. Maybe I could make something from nothing. Why not give it a shot?
My first bright idea was to learn to build furniture. That plan had some drawbacks, the most obvious of which being that I’m not very handy. It was my wife who suggested I write a novel. It seemed like a dumb idea, though, since I majored in finance and had spent my entire college career avoiding English courses like the plague. Having said that, I couldn’t completely shake off the idea. Eventually, it nagged at me long enough that I felt compelled to put pen to paper. Eight months later, I finished Rising Phoenix and about a year after that I managed to get it published.
The success of Rising Phoenix and my subsequent books has allowed me to make my living as a writer, which isn’t bad work if you can get it. Other than that, my life hasn’t changed all that much. Aging elbows have forced me to replace climbing with backcountry skiing and mountain bike racing. And I got the not-so-smart idea of restoring an old pickup to replace the dying Jeep. I still live in Wyoming, though, and I’m still married to the girl I started climbing with so many years ago.