Situation Reports (SITREP) are sent to commanders by request, scheduled, or situational necessity. Proper SITREP’s provide decision makers and readers a quick and clear understanding of the current situation.
With a proper SITREP, commanders of ground forces maintain critical situational awareness.
A SITREP with author Kyle Mills.
1. Welcome back to the States, how was it living abroad? Has your Spanish improved?
Thanks! Living in Spain was a blast. Previously, the longest we’d ever been outside the country was four months in South Africa. This felt very different. You really have to integrate into the culture and, of course, the language. My Spanish is better than it was when I arrived, but I still have a long road ahead of me. Fortunately, we’re going back for another year in June.
2. Congratulations on another awesome Mitch Rapp novel, can you tell me what inspired Lethal Agent and Rapp’s current predicament?
My last book, Red War was an effort to put the series in slightly unfamiliar territory. While Mitch and all the important elements were there, I wanted to create something a bit different than what had come before.
The goal with Lethal Agent was exactly the opposite. I wanted to write a classic Vince Flynn novel. My hope is that readers will be transported back to the days of Transfer of Power and Consent to Kill.
3. What type of research did you do for Lethal Agent?
It was actually a pretty research-heavy project. I had to get on top of virology and the Mexican drug cartels. Super interesting—and terrifying—stuff. As I wrote in the opening of the book, though, I obscured some of the things I learned. Vince felt the same obligation when he wrote Transfer of Power. In my case, there was no need to get too detailed about our border security or the creation of anthrax.
4. Will we see Grisha Azarov again?
It’s an interesting question. He was a good opponent for Mitch, but I’m not sure fans found him appealing as an ally. These books are very much about Mitch and the men loyal to him. Grisha will never be loyal to anyone but his girlfriend. He may be too much of a wild card to become a recurring character.
5. If given the opportunity, would you write a novel or two filling the long chronologic gap between Kill Shot and Transfer of Power?
I’d love to, but that idea hasn’t gotten much traction with the powers that be. It’d be fun to know what happened to Greta and how Mitch evolved from the man he was in Kill Shot to the one we pick up in Transfer of Power.
6. What’s next for Rapp?
Readers will see him operating almost entirely inside the US in the next one. And he’ll be playing catch-up, which is unusual for him. Instead of a book about him stopping an attack on the US, I wanted to explore what he would do if an attack succeeded. Other than that, you’ll just have to wait and see!
7. What do you do with your time when you’re not writing?
I’m a person with way too many hobbies and have had to pare them down a bit lately. I’m an avid outdoor athlete, so I do a lot of mountain biking, trail running, and backcountry skiing. This year I’m dedicating a lot of time to learning Spanish in preparation for our return to Europe. I’m obsessed with becoming fluent in the language and if I succeed I think it’ll be the hardest thing I’ve ever done.
8. With Lima Charlie, I get to work with a lot of up and coming authors. What advice do you have for someone trying to get published?
Be persistent and believe in yourself. Writing books is fun, but trying to get published can be soul crushing. I probably got fifty turndowns from agents before I was finally picked up. Remember, even Vince started out as a self-published author.
9. What are the last three books you’ve read and what is on your TBR stack?
These days, I only read in Spanish in an effort to kill two birds with one stone. The last three books:
Sapiens: De Animales a Dioses by Yuval Noah Harari: A really interesting piece about the rise of humanity. English title: Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind. Highly recommended.
Rebelión en la Granja by George Orwell: The Spanish version of the ultra-classic Animal Farm.
El Símbolo Perdido by Dan Brown—The Lost Symbol in English
On top of my TBR list are Duna (the science fiction classic Dune, which is really an allegory of the Middle East) and La Reina del Sur by Arturo Perez-Reverte: A novel about drug trafficking by one of Spain’s best-known writers.
10. You’re trapped on an island, you have one book, one weapon, and one personal item (Non-electronic) with you. What are they?
Cardinal of the Kremlin by Tom Clancy. Perhaps the greatest modern thriller.
A hatchet. Million and one uses.
My guitar. Endless hours of entertainment and frustration.
Meet Kyle on his LETHAL AGENT book tour:
September 24 @ 7PM
Barnes and Noble
2100 North Snelling Ave.
Roseville, MN 55113
September 25 @ 7PM
Once Upon A Crime
604 West 26th Street
Minneapolis, MN 55405
September 26 @ 7PM
5943 Balboa Ave. Ste. 100
San Diego, CA 921111
September 27 @ 7PM
The Poisoned Pen
4014 North Goldwater Blvd
Scottsdale, AZ 85251
September 28 @ 2PM
Half Price Books
5803 E. Northwest Hwy
Dallas, TX 75231
September 29 @ 2:00PM
Murder By the Book
2342 Bissonnet Street
Houston, TX 77005
September 30 @ 7:30PM
Gwinnett County Public Library
5570 Spalding Drive
Peachtree Corners, GA 30092
October 1 @ 12PM
Salt Marsh Author Series
100 Devil’s Elbow Lane
Hilton Head Island, SC 29926
(Admission is the cost of lunch – $25. Reservations are required, and can be made by calling the clubhouse at 843.837.2230.)
October 2 @ 7PM
Barrington Books Retold
176 Hillside Road
Cranston, RI 02920
Tickets for this event are $10 (the ticket fee will be applied to the cost of the book the night of the event)
Our Review of
“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.
Get to know Kyle:
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.