Review: Red Cell (Kyra Stryker & Jonathan Burke #1) by Mark Henshaw

Red Cell - Mark Henshaw

Mr. Henshaw will be added to my "must read" list.  I came across the second book in this series, Cold Shot, on NetGalley.  I didn't want to start with book two so ordered Red Cell.  Great decision on my part.

What I liked:  I read thrillers for a couple of reasons.  They are usually about a subject which interest me the subject matter is something a bit familiar to me.  Red Cell ticked both boxes.  I spent 20 years in the Air Force along with my husband.  My first four years, I worked on jet engines.  I love airplanes.  The beauty and the technology of airplanes fascinates me.  My husband was privileged to work from almost the ground up on the F-117 (stealth fighter).  Basically, Red Cell had my imagination caught from the get go.

Mr. Henshaw took an idea and turned it into an adventure for me.  I actually felt I was there in each scene.  My heart pounded right along with Kyra trying to escape hostiles.  I lost track in everything going on around me just to continue reading.  That's a mark of an excellent novelist.  

The relationship between Jonathan and Kyra is complicated.  Analyst versus Ops.  They both got a look at the other side and it made them work well together.  

To me, the storyline was believable and the plot came together with a clue here and there.  I liked the shifting between the characters and the scenes.  It wasn't all one point of view and I never knew where I was going next.  It added to the thrill.

What I didn't like:  This is not so much what I didn't like but what I found might be implausible.  I'd like to think not, but history indicates the different security branches don't share as well as they did in Red Cell.  Admittedly, the sharing was forced thanks to couple of characters, but I'm not sure our services share as well as they did in this novel.

Overall, I could not put Red Cell down.  It was unexpected.  I saw the ratings on Goodreads and was a bit puzzled.  Maybe I was just in the right mood to read it than some of the others and I had no expectations since I'd never read anything by Mr. Henshaw (this is his first novel).  Now I find myself wanting to put my other reads aside to read Cold Shot but I can't, dang it!!

Amazon's Kindle edition is $8.54 and the paperback is $8.99.  Barnes & Noble's Nook book and paperback are $9.99.  Worth the money to me.

Highly Recommend!!