cover image Tom Clancy: Line of Sight

Tom Clancy: Line of Sight

Mike Maden. Putnam, $29 (480p) ISBN 978-0-7352-1592-4

Set in the shattered remains of the former Yugoslavia, Maden’s second Jack Ryan Jr. novel in the Clancy franchise (after 2017’s Point of Contact) struggles to give a coherent picture of the politics of that troubled region. Characters repeatedly fall back on some variation of the phrase “It’s confusing,” and it’s doubtful that even Clancy himself could have explained it any better than Maden. Jack Ryan Sr. is now the U.S. president, and son Jack Jr. has taken over series hero duties as an employee of his dad’s old secret organization, the Campus. Sent to Bosnia on a job for a cover organization affiliated with the Campus, Jack Jr. agrees to try to find Bosnian Muslim Aida Curic at the request of his physician mother. In 1992, 25 years earlier, his mother saved the life of then three-year-old Aida. While searching for Aida in Sarajevo, Jack runs across the Iron Syndicate, a nefarious secret agency whose various political factions are conspiring to use a false flag operation to trick the world powers into starting WWIII. Only a nostalgic love of these aging characters will induce readers to plow through the formulaic plot to the unsurprising ending. Agent: Jennifer Rudolph Walsh, WME. (June)