J.F. Penn's Reviews > The Shadow Project

The Shadow Project by Scott Mariani
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's review
Jul 30, 2011

really liked it
bookshelves: thrillers

Full video review here: http://mysterythriller.tv/the-shadow-...

I found my first Scott Mariani book in a secondhand bookstore and have gone on to devour several of these books in a row. They feature Ben Hope, ex SAS security consultant who gets involved in various adventures. He is a kind of Jack Reacher character but more into his relationships, not so much of a loner. Jeff Decker helps Ben run Le Val, a tactical training unit in France and Brooke Marcel is the love interest, on and off across multiple books. If you like James Rollins Sigma Force, you’ll definitely like Scott Mariani. I was also thrilled to discover that Ben wants to complete his degree in theology at Oxford University which was my own degree, so I’ll always have a soft spot for him!

The Shadow Project opens with a couple of murders and then the kidnap of a professor’s son. The stakes are already high within 2 chapters. For the sake of his son, Dr Adam O Connor has to go with the bad guys to try and rebuild Die Glocke, The Bell which a scientist called Kammler was building for the Nazis. Kammler was the engineer responsible for designing the camps and gas chambers for the final solution. It was supposed to be a kind of anti-gravity machine, harnessing hidden forces - free energy for all or to be used as a infinitely powerful bomb.

Meanwhile, Ben Hope gets dragged into providing security for a billionaire, Maximilian Steiner, after he breaks a guys arm during a training session. It’s one of the many well-written fight scenes and Ben is definitely a killer with a conscience. He knows when to apply the brakes but in this instance, he goes too far and has to lead the reluctant team himself or be sued for lost earnings. There have been several attempts to kidnap the billionaire and steal a Nazi document which relates to Kammler. While defending Steiner, Ben is shocked to discover his sister is still alive when he thought she had been taken in Morocco as a child. This sub-plot gives some depth to the fast-paced book.

So while Adam is held ransom by the neo-Nazis with his son in danger, Ben is trying to track them down with his scientist sister, now reunited. The body count rises as Ben gets closer to his goal and the Nazis have some success with the bell. No spoilers!

So the book combines action-adventure and science, with bad guy neo-Nazis and the emotional edge of Ben’s relationships, packed with fight scenes and body count. I highly recommend you start with any of the Ben Hope books - although there is a series, I have read several out of order and find them a great read.

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