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Eye of the Storm (Sean Dillon Book 1) Kindle Edition

4.4 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews

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Length: 307 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Higgins's thrillers may evoke a strong sense of deja vu (same basic story, different time frame), but that doesn't seem to diminish the impact of each new novel. Early in 1991, while the Gulf war is in full bloom, operatives of Saddam Hussein hire legendary terrorist Sean Dillon to take the war to the enemy. A master of disguise and subterfuge, Dillon began his career with the IRA, earning the enmity of Liam Devlin--the unforgettable antihero of The Eagle Has Landed , who makes a featured appearance here--and of Martin Brosnan, an American Special Forces hero and IRA member turned college professor. After Dillon's attempt to assassinate former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher during a visit to France fails, he decides to go after her successor, John Major, and his War Cabinet with a mortar attack on 10 Downing Street. Learning that British Intelligence is recruiting Brosnan to track him down, Dillon confronts his old enemy, a meeting that ends in tragedy and leaves Brosnan bitterly committed to revenge. Although readers can be sure that Dillon's scheme will be foiled, fun remains in the how and why. Standard Higgins in style, plot and resolution, this is bound for bestsellerdom. BOMC feature alternate; Reader's Digest Condensed Books selection; audio rights to Dove.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Kirkus Reviews

A world-class assassin goes after British PM John Major in Higgins's latest firmly engaging round of speculative derring-do. The Day of the Jackal this isn't, although Sean Dillon--a rogue IRA hit-man who's also a master thespian--is nearly as charismatic a killer as Forsyth's Jackal; and the author's own The Eagle Has Landed it isn't quite either, though Higgins, a diligent literary recycler, revives the spirit, pacing, and even one major player from that 1975 classic. This is the vigorous, rather simple tale of what might have been behind the real-life, still unexplained, mortar attack on Number Ten Downing Street on February 7, 1991. Here, Saddam Hussein, reeling under the allied bombing of Baghdad, asks oily Iraqi billionaire Michael Aroun to avenge Iraqi honor, which Aroun does by joining forces with Stalinist KGB Colonel Josef Makeev and hiring Dillon to blow away Margaret Thatcher, now visiting in France. When Dillon is betrayed by two hirelings and misses his shot at the Iron Lady, he ups the stakes- -why not, he proposes, go after the current PM (here, a most charming chap) and in fact the entire British War Cabinet? Using his Olivier-like powers to pose as several characters, including a bag-lady, and aided by a sexy KGB spy, Dillon sneaks into England, then Ireland, contacts old criminal/IRA pals, and plans. Arrayed against him in an ever-more suspenseful chase are several stalwart British agents, male and female, and two ex-IRA men, including Liam Devlin of Eagle fame. The mortar attack itself has about as much dramatic impact as a hiccup, but Higgins saves his big melodrama for Dillon's attempted escape--which will leave readers happily breathless and waiting for a sequel. The action's so fast, the heroes so valiant, and the villains so blackhearted that not even Higgins's syntax-crunching prose will keep his fans from driving this--his most enjoyable book in years- -up the charts. (Book-of-the-Month Split Main Selection for July) -- Copyright ©1992, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

Product Details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 586 KB
  • Print Length: 307 pages
  • Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons (July 1 1993)
  • Sold by: Penguin Group USA
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00132S79A
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars 23 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #44,748 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.4 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Mass Market Paperback
One of the things that Jack Higgins does extremely well is to take factual events (or at least rumored events) and weave an exciting fictional story around them. In this case, the story surrounds the failed mortar attack on Number Ten Downing Street prompted by Sadam Hussein during the Gulf War. Mr. Higgins takes these events, and introduces us to one of his most memorable characters. Sean Dillon is an ex-IRA assassin now working as a gunman for hire. As a villain, there are few better. His skill at weapons as well as his ability to become anyone he chooses make him almost unstoppable.
Of course, acting as protagonist in this story is Brigadier Charles Ferguson and his secret organization called Group Four. He enlists the aid of Martin Brosnan, an ex-ally of Sean Dillon's, to stop Sean from completing his mission. What we end up with is a taut cat-and-mouse game between two very clever agents, each one of them determined to defeat the other and settle several old scores in the process.
As this is the first of the series of stories that have Sean Dillon as the main character, the suspense is a bit lessened. I mean, it's obvious that Sean won't be killed, and it's also obvious the mortar attack will fail, since this is an actual event and we know how the event turns out. However, this book is a very engaging tale, and it serves as excellent background on what Sean Dillon was like before he became 'one of the good guys'.
As an author of espionage and adventure fiction, I've not found another author that I enjoy as much as I enjoy Jack Higgins. And since Sean Dillon is easily Mr. Higgins most memorable recurring character, this book serves as a welcome introduction to his stories.
If you're interested at all in good, solid espionage with lots of fast-paced action, this book is definitely for you.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
What separates this book from other "thrillers" is the sheer fast pace and relatively simple plot that rewards readers like a short satisfying lunch rather than a boring 3 course.
Though the characters were very much like before - 1. Brit Intel agents 2. Master-criminal/spy 3. Ambitious larger than life targets - as usual, the British PM 4. Small-time crooks who became untied loose ends that eventually tripped the villain 5. Traitor within the British establishment
There is now of course the introduction of the veteran Liam Devlin, the man who never grew old and moved as he did during the Gulf War as he did during the WW2. His successor is Martin Brosnan, with the same self-effacing humour, a former IRA who through strange circumstances found himself working for British interests.
Sean Dillon though, was unforgivably stupid to have made the errors that eventually led to his failure.
The final question is, is there a criminal in Higgins' novel who is not virtually invincible?
This book is worth the reading, for a quick theory/speculation of how the British War Cabinet survived an almost random assault - the kind which would never have been detected if not for stupid mistakes on the perpetrators.
While the characters echoed those from earlier novels, there is enough variation in the plot to make it interesting.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
I have many times viewed a good Jack Higgins novel as a Tom Clancy story written with less than half the words. I'll give it to Jack, he wastes no time getting to the plot and moves it along at a fast clip, too. What we have with 'Eye of the Storm' is a fictional re-telling of the botched bombing of #10 Downing Street in London in the 80's. How was the plot to attempt to assassinate Prime Minister Thatcher hatched? How was it to be executed? AND most importantly: WHO was behind the bombing? This novel gives us an entertaining fictional version of the hows, who's and the why's. Sean Dillon, who ultimately becomes a good guy in future Higgins stories is portrayed as a troubled but highly intelligent IRA strongman who is given the task of killing one of their biggest enemies. The authenticity with which this novel was written makes one wonder whether or not Mr. Higgins actually HAS IRA connections...or is just a very very good author. I'd like to think it was his talent.
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Format: Audio Cassette
As the book that first exposes us to Sean Dillon, reading EYE OF THE STORM is pivitol to one's better understanding the Dillon books that follow because you get to read more about his background, experience his coldheartedness, and witness his modus operandi.
As for the audio versions, I've had the pleasure of listening to the unabridged version by Patrick Macnee and there is no better reader (or performer) around. The abridged version is OK and definitely better than the downloaded version whose quality made it sound like I was listening to the downloaded audio through string with a tin cup. Their problem seemed to be of the four levels of quality that they could download it in, only the first two were available, with a burnable quality and an MP3 quality not available.
If you're going for the audio versions, get the cassette version and avoid the download so that you can experience Macnee's delightful way of crisply going from one accent to the next.
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By A Customer on Sept. 18 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback
In this book, former IRA terrorist turned freelance assassin Sean Dillon attempts to assassinate former PM Maggie Thatcher, then the entire British War Cabinet, all at the behest of a former KGB colonel and an Iraqi-French oil millionaire. British intelligence operatives and two of Dillon's former IRA colleagues are tasked with stopping him.
Dillon is at his best as the charming yet cold-blooded rogue who operates according to his own set of (somewhat twisted) standards. The short appearance by veteran IRA man turned professor Liam Devlin is a welcome addition. The character of Martin Brosnan is not as clear as he could have been. I haven't read any other Higgins books involving him (though I'd very much like to,) so I'm not sure if this is a general problem with the character or just this book's incarnation of him.
All in all, a great introduction to a great character whom you wind up rooting for in spite of yourself.
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