Much better than the first book (which I did enjoy by the way); however, this time a lot of the issues I had with the first book did not apply. This time the main character's abrasive attitude served him well as the hero of the story as opposed to the first book where he came off more like a jerk. I really appreciated that as I wanted to like the character in the first book, but his "not my problem" attitude made him very unsympathetic as a hero. There were also several examples in the first story where he was simply too much of an ass to get out of his own way, which I found frustrating. This time he had all of the attitude with none of the ass and was always the hero I wanted him to be.
Another interesting aspect is that the book is written in 3rd person instead of 1st person. Given how the story was being told from the perspective of multiple individuals simultaneously, I believe this was a necessary change and for the better.
I also found this story in some ways very similar to Robert Ludlum's style. Maybe not on the international level that Ludlum works within, but as far as the description of the weapons, military operations and equipment, methodology and history that are used within the book are extremely similar to Ludlum in my personal opinion. This is both good and bad. Good because I felt that I really understood something that I probably never would have the opportunity to learn about in such detail. It made the story and the rational behind certain story points appear more realistic. Bad because the explanations were, at times, tedious and fell into the realm of too much information. So much so that it took away from the intensity of the moment.
It is for the above "bad" and the fact that at times I found the dragging out of plot points as the reason why I took a star away. Even the other characters in the book were written as to be losing patience with the fact that the hero wasn't revealing all the information or what he believed was going on.
Typical generic example:
"Tell me what time is it?"
"Just tell me."
"We have to go!"
"Nevermind! We need to go now!"
"Will you tell me what is going on?"
"I'll tell you when we get to the helicopter."
...several paragraphs later...
"Okay, what time is it now?"
"We might just make it."
"Pilot what direction are we heading?"
"Might make what?"
Listens to pilot say something.
"Okay, we're heading north. We should just make it."
"Will you tell me what's going on?!"
"What time is it?"
Get the idea?