Before I read Deadly Game, I read the reviews...to say that they are mixed is putting it mildly...so I really didn't know what to expect. What I found really surprised me on a couple of levels.
First, this is a brutal book. There is no sugar coating anywhere in this book. I am a twenty-year military wife. I know what military men are like. My husband still won't talk about most of the things he had to do while he was in the military. I have heard him and his friends talking when they didn't know I could hear them. They are crude. They are raw. They are military. They are soldiers. It has always been amazing to me that my husband could be two different men. My husband and the father of my children, and the soldier...and believe me they in no way resemble each other. Seeing the Ghostwalkers as they are, as they perceive themselves to be, and the way their women look at them is very familiar to me. Being in the military IS brutal...being in the Special Forces is even more so. Feehan apparently knows some soldiers, because hers are quite realistic...maybe too realistic for some readers to handle.
Next, Whitney. I knew he wasn't dead. He couldn't be...because then there would be no nemesis. Whitney is a monster...and some people have a hard time believing that such a monster could exist. I am a psychologist and have been, in my past, a rape counselor. I am not going to go into detail, but suffice it to say that monsters like Whitney do exist. Freaks like the perverted physician in this novel do exist. I have witnessed the aftermath in their victims. Enough said.
Finally, this was a necessary addition to the Game novels. This one is not for the faint of heart. Feehan had to show some reality in this one. Granted, the psychic enhancements are getting a bit out of hand, but showing Whitney's madness was necessary. Just saying he was crazy would not have packed the same punch as reading it in detail. I would be lying if I said that I was comfortable reading the most brutal scenes in this novel...I was not. In fact, I was quite uncomfortable. I can see how many people could not read this novel. It is not for the faint of heart.
One last thing, I would like to say that I am disappointed in the rude and graphic language with which Ms. Feehan is using in her sex/love scenes. I can think of many other words she can use in place of the ones that she has recently begun to use with frequency in all of her novels...not just the Game series. The crudity takes away from the beauty of what can be between two people. I would truly like to see her back away from the crudity and go back to simplicity. That is why I gave this book a 4 instead of a 5.
In closing, I would say that if you are a fan of the Game series, you should read this book. It is ugly. It is brutal. It is crude...but it also gives you a glimpse of what it is truly like in the military(the Ghostwalkers)...what monsters can lurk within even the stillest of waters (Jack, Ken, and really all of the Ghostwalkers)...and how far human depravity can really sink (Whitney). Again, a necessary addition, but it is not a comfortable book to read.