The first review of Fire Force appeared in City Am today, and it's a corker. You can read it here.
The A-Team meets James Bond in this gung-ho mercenary adventure
Thursday, 4th February 2010
Overgrown boys will love a tale about old soldiers in Africa in which real men carry Kalashnikovs
BY MATT LYNN
by Jeremy Hazlehurst
YOU’VE got to hand it to Matt Lynn, he can certainly write a first line. “Until you’ve sat down to a game of poker inside Africa’s most brutal jail, you don’t really know what it’s like to sweat,” begins his second novel. No man, surely, can fail to read on.
Our hero is Steve West, an ex-special forces soldier whose former colleague Ollie Hall is in the jail (described as “Hell’s Butlins”), and West is here to break him out. Before the first 20 pages, as well as a jail-break, we’ve had a card game, an Irish bomb-maker, a brutal local hardman and scantily-clad bar girls. It’s fair to say that if you don’t have a Y chromosome, then this book is going to leave you cold.
Fire Force’s plot is simple: a gang of mercenaries – Brits, gurkhas, South Africans, you name it, some of whom appeared in Lynn’s previous book, Death Force – go on a job to assassinate the dictator of the African country of Batota. It’s a mix of Casino Royale, The Day of the Jackal and back copies of Commando magazine, with a bit of the A-Team thrown in. There are helicopters, people crying: “We’re going in!” and a posh conservationist called Samantha. And it’s as much fun as you can have without firing a rocket-propelled grenade into a fireworks factory.
You can tell that Lynn has done his research, and the book absolutely screams authenticity. It even has an appendix about the weapons used in the book – if you ever wanted to know more about the Mi-24 gunship or the KPV machine gun, this is for you. It’s not going to win the Booker Prize, but this is a fast-paced and well-told tale of derring-do that guarantees entertainment.