Today is my stop on the blog tour for ‘The Watch List’ by Joseph Mitcham, organised by Damppebbles Blog Tours. I was delighted to participate in this tour, and I hope that you will check out both the author and the book.
*Disclaimer: ‘I was given a copy this book in exchange for an honest review.’*
Sixty-eight dead and nearly 300 injured in a hostile vehicle and bomb attack on a community festival in Birmingham, the country is in shock.
Battling the mental turmoil of the aftermath, Alex, a former Army communications specialist, stumbles across the UK Terror Watch List – he cannot resist the challenge of stealing the list from under the nose of his contract supervisor, Lucy Butler, a razor sharp and headstrong Intelligence Corps corporal with big ambitions.
Wrestling with his conscience and the ethics of tackling unconvicted suspects, Alex enlists the help of famed former UK Special Forces Warrant Officer, Craig Medhurst. Alex struggles to win the respect of Craig’s core team, but together they hatch a daring plan to act on their selected targets.
Can Alex use his charm to persuade Corporal Butler to join them?
What would you do with it?
I fell in love with the premise of this book and the questions it asked from the start. And it more than lived up to my expectations.
From the beginning to the very end, this was a gripping read. It’s brutal in places, and the descriptions are quite graphic, especially in the early part of the story – something that I appreciate, but some readers might need to prepare themselves for. But it is not overused – it makes it’s point poignantly, and not with shock value. For me, that helped make the story all the more vivid, and realistic, and gave the plot a firm grounding. We’ve seen the impact of terrorism in the real world, and for me, that helped hook me firmly into the story. That I am also familiar with Birmingham, only added to that realism.
In that sense, it is a very clever book. Not, only does it firmly ground itself in reality. It asks the questions that most people would not be comfortable asking, let alone answering. As a work of fiction, it does a brilliant job of taking that plunge, asking and answering those questions.
I found it to be a gritty, fast-paced read that is very well written. The author does not hold his punches, hooking you in through a memorable start and then not letting go. The plot is well developed, and the pacing was on point, leaving you feeling as though you were trying to catch your breath on a rollercoaster that knew just how to snatch it away. I found the plot a little more developed than the characters in places. However, they were still well developed and drove the plot, and I very much enjoyed their interactions and seeing their motivations and very human doubts. It isn’t a book that you will forget in a hurry.
I thoroughly enjoyed reading ‘The Watch List’. I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys thrillers, and who wants a book that will you sweep you away, and I know that I will be looking for more books by the author.
About the Author:
Joseph Mitcham served with the British military in elite and technical units for over 16 years. His service not only gave him a thorough tactical and technical understanding of some of techniques and processes employed in his first novel, it also provided him with the opportunity to develop himself, earning a first class honours degree in business leadership by the end of his service.
The inspiration for writing ‘The Watch List’ was taken from personal experiences from the roles that he has served in and characteristics from some of the people that he has served with. Joseph has written an incredible, yet compellingly credible story that plays out in our world as he sees it today.
The Watch List – Joseph Mitcham (Published in paperback and digital formats on 2nd December 2019) – 4/5 (4 Stars)
If you’ve read it or read in the future, please feel free to shout at me about this fantastic book. Or if you have any recommendations for similar books, please shoot them my way.
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