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Terminal List #4

The Devil's Hand

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It’s been 20 years since 9/11. Two decades since the United States was attacked on home soil and embarked on 20 years of war. The enemy has been patient, learning, and adapting. And the enemy is ready to strike again.

A new president offers hope to a country weary of conflict. He’s a young, popular, self-made visionary…but he’s also a man with a secret.

Halfway across the globe a regional superpower struggles with sanctions imposed by the Great Satan and her European allies, a country whose ancient religion spawned a group of ruthless assassins. Faced with internal dissent and extrajudicial targeted killings by the United States and Israel, the Supreme Leader puts a plan in motion to defeat the most powerful nation on earth.

Meanwhile, in a classified facility five stories underground, a young PhD student has gained access to a level of bioweapons known only to a select number of officials. A second-generation agent, he has been assigned a mission that will bring his adopted homeland to its knees.

524 pages, Hardcover

First published April 13, 2021

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About the author

Jack Carr

25 books4,313 followers
Jack Carr is a former Navy SEAL who led special operations teams as a Team Leader, Platoon Commander, Troop Commander and Task Unit Commander. Over his 20 years in Naval Special Warfare he transitioned from an enlisted SEAL sniper specializing in communications and intelligence, to a junior officer leading assault and sniper teams in Iraq and Afghanistan, to a platoon commander practicing counterinsurgency in the southern Philippines, to commanding a Special Operations Task Unit in the most Iranian influenced section of southern Iraq throughout the tumultuous drawdown of U.S. Forces. Jack retired from active duty in 2016. He lives with his wife and three children in Park City, Utah. He is the author of The Terminal List, True Believer, and Savage Son.

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 854 reviews
Profile Image for Kay .
2,041 reviews770 followers
October 2, 2022
I can't wait to watch this series on screen! If you love watching action thrillers, this series is coming to Amazon Prime starring as James Reece. 😍

Terminal List series is a political-military action thriller. This fourth book refers a lot to 9/11 and Covid-19 as a backdrop to a manufactured deadly pathogen, a Marburg/Ebola variant that's released in two large US cities. Thousands dead within hours. Reece while working covertly for the POTUS has gotten himself close to the "source" of the infectious disease.

I love how Jack Carr weaves fact and fiction. A good chunk of The Devil's Hand reminds me of Level 4 biohazard diseases in Richard Preston's book Panic in Level 4: Cannibals, Killer Viruses, and Other Journeys to the Edge of Science. The author's note is fascinating and I couldn't help but read more about Russia's bioweapons lab and Dr. Ustinov.

Trigger warning:
Profile Image for JD.
718 reviews338 followers
April 26, 2023
In this installment James Reece is given another list to start with, but this one comes from the new president and leads him to uncover a new terrorist plot that will dwarf 9/11. This starts you on a rollercoaster ride with James Reece where he does what he does best, hunting bad guys!! Carr's attention to detail is again excellent and his character development next level. The plot of this book is also well brought together from all the angles and it is scary how these things could actually happen if it isn't for the brave men and women protecting the world. He also sets up the next book nicely and am really looking forward to get my hands on it. Very highly recommended reading yet again.
44 reviews7 followers
April 4, 2021
First of all, I have to preface this review with this statement. Any thing I say will only do a disservice to this novel and its author Jack Carr.
Jack Carr once said that his third book, SAVAGE SON was his homage to LAST OF THE BREED by louis l'amour, THE MOST DANGEROUS GAME by Richard Connell and other books that affected him as a young reader. I can very easily imagine reading in the near future an aspiring new author claiming that their novel is an homage to THE DEVIL'S HAND by Jack Carr.
THE DEVIL'S HAND is not just a Thriller. It is a cautionary tale along with a history lesson. Jack Carr's ability to make a reader feel real emotion while reading, once again places him at the top of my favorite authors list. Hooked from the prologue, I did not want to put the book down when I had to. I love how Jack Carr did a quick recap of his first three books in the first chapter, gave a shout out to Brad Thor (another one of my favorite authors), and made me understand and feel empathy for the bad guys, not just hate them. If you have not started reading Jack Carr's books, there is no time like the present. Check out officialjackcarr.com for the synopsis of the book that I think will be at the top of everyone's favorite book of 2021.
Profile Image for Matt.
3,822 reviews12.9k followers
October 19, 2021
Jack Carr has developed a series that mixes captivating political intrigue with personal experiences working on the dark side of American covert missions. These novels not only force the reader to think about what’s going on around them, but also provides an exhilarating mission to keep the country safe from powerful enemies. While it has been two decades since the largest act of terror on US soil, few have forgotten. Some within the Administration want to ensure those responsible pay the ultimate price, feeling that the core planning group remains at large. A new threat is being developed, one that could cripple America once again. Will the country be ready and react, or remain hopeless once again? Carr proves that he’s one of the strongest writers in the genre.

After the attacks on September 11, 2001, America smouldered, but would not succumb. Twenty years of reflection and war on the enemy, showing their might, but also a means by which they plan, execute, and progress on the battlefield. This has not gone unnoticed by those who helped plan the previous attack, and it is high time for a new strike, one that no one will (again) see coming.

While the US has been trying to make sense of what happened those years ago, a new president emerges, with hopes of helping to heal and reset the direction into the future. However, he has ties of his own to September 11th and wants to take one more form of action before closing the book on this part of US history. James Reece, former Navy SEAL, is summoned to meet with POTUS and play a key role in eradicating a handful of men on US soil who plotted the attacks, but remained in the shadows.

While Reece is working to help his Commander-in-Chief, there are those within the US who see Reece as a loose cannon that mist be stopped,. Violating many of the rules and laws of American espionage, there are some who will do whatever they can to see Reece brought to justice for his actions and possibly neutralised. Still, it will take more than tattling to get it done effectively.

All the while, a diplomatic pouch makes its way into the United States and ends up in the hands of a young man. What’s inside will surely prove deadly if it falls into the wrong hands. A bioweapon that few knew existed could be unleashed with devastating effect and send America into a state of panic once more. Carr delivers a story that could so readily happen, making it all the more impactful.

While I enjoy counter-terrorism and espionage stories, they can sometimes be far-fetched or a tad over the top. In all four novels that Jack Carr has penned, none of them have been implausible, which makes the writing all the more worthy of notice. The ideas are strong, easily relatable, and full of action, forcing the reader to wonder ‘what if’ and ‘when’, rather than rest peacefully, knowing it is all guaranteed fiction.

James Reece is a wonderful protagonist in this piece, offering up some stellar one liners when the time is right. His backstory is less prominent in the novel, though there are still some flashbacks to substantiate what he is doing. His grit and determination are like no other and left me eager to see what he would do next. He is job-focussed, but shows a slight vulnerability when needed, adding depth to his character at the right time.

Carr writes in such a way that the reader cannot tell where the fiction ends and reality begins. Not only is this the sign of a great writer, but there is an disturbing sense of what might be intermingled with plot lines that add to their story. The narrative inched its way forward effectively, never giving the reader a reprieve from the action. The plot evolved well and seemed to take on a life of its own at just the right time. Mixing politics with espionage, Carr keeps the reader on their toes and wondering how to handle what’s been put before them. While not my usual reading fare, I could not put it down and am pleased that I took the time to read the latest in this series. Jack Carr is at the top of his game and others within the genre ought to take notice.

Kudos, Mr. Carr, for another winner. Keep it up and you will surely have many more fans admitting your work.

Love/hate the review? An ever-growing collection of others appears at:

A Book for All Seasons, a different sort of Book Challenge: https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/...
Profile Image for SteVen Hendricks.
561 reviews16 followers
April 2, 2023
Book Review - I was extremely torn in writing this review but I have always tried to be honest and fair with all my reviews. This one was difficult! I loved all three of Jack Carr’s previous books but this one was way too over the top. Don’t get me wrong, “The Devil’s Hand” ‘overall’ was a really good story and Jack Carr has quickly become one of the best storytellers in the action thriller genre. But what really bothered me about this particular book was Carr’s constant disparaging comments and ‘right-wing’ political jabs throughout an otherwise well written and superbly researched story. Yes I know the book is a political action thriller and that Jack Carr is a Conservative, but this one was a little too much for a nonpartisan, moderate military brat who wants to be entertained when I read and not read the author’s personal political jabs whether I agree with them or not. This book felt like it was written in an effort to ‘own the Libs” and how one side of the political aisle handled the current pandemic. We get enough of that already from all the different broadcast media outlets and social media. Carr’s fourth installment felt less about James Reese and more about Carr’s personal political soap box. I love Jack Carr as an author, but I’m not a fan of the negative partisan politics, the ugly racial divide and the pandemic made into a political issue that has engulfed our country right now. I just wanted to read about James Reese kicking bad guys’ asses while being supported by his friends, colleagues and his country. Way too “in your face” with the far right-wing capital-C conservative politics for me this time. The story was really really good - Carr is extremely knowledgeable and an excellent researcher, but the storyline got lost in the mud with his personal politics. I’ve always appreciated those thriller authors who can write nonpartisan political action thrillers without bashing either side in their storytelling. Again, I read to be entertained, not preached to about personal political viewpoints. That’s just me - very middle of the road. Overall, I enjoyed the story...it was a good read other than Carr’s personal political views.
Profile Image for Cory L.
4 reviews
April 22, 2021
The story might actually be interesting if Jack Carr wasn’t such a terrible writer. The first book was enjoyable to read and I was able to overlook his flaws. The second book was a significant step down, but not completely awful. The third book was just plain bad and the characters just made me roll my eyes every time we heard about the Hastings and their perfect, rich family.

I decided to give this one a go but I set my expectations low. My god what a mistake that was. Jack Carr has managed to turn this series into his own Q anon fan fiction with his own meta commentary on the current state of the world and conspiracy theories regarding Covid. It’s just so off putting and unnecessary and I couldn’t stop rolling my eyes. I’m done with this series.
44 reviews16 followers
April 3, 2021
The time has come,the long awaited thriller is here - Jack Carr’s THE DEVIL’S HAND! And you will not be disappointed! If it could be possible, THE DEVIL’S HAND is a more intense, stunning, blow-to-the-gut read than TERMINAL LIST or SAVAGE SON, though it has elements of revenge and retribution. Its definite message should capture and hold your attention.

I have a background in virology/immunology and worked with some of the world’s leading researchers. I know what Marburg and hemorrhagic diseases are, their threat, and lethality. Most people assume a fiction novel is just that-fantasy. Most military/political thriller authors write REALITY, knowledge they have on a subject, event, and insert their protagonists into the situation.Thriller readers know more about hazardous world events because the top thriller authors today have addressed the dangers.

I apologize in advance for the longevity of this review, but THIS BOOK MERITS IT. You may be aware my reviews go beyond just relating briefly the storyline, I analyze and try to point out to readers significant pieces of factual information that may prove invaluable to them in the future. Items that apply to their own lives. This is especially true in this novel, that is NOT fantasy as the story plays out. I am appreciative of David Brown, Deputy Director, Publicity of Atria Books gifting me an ARC and to Emily Bestler, Editor in Chief for having the wisdom and foresight to immediately grasp and pull Jack Carr into the Atria Books family. And a sincere thank you to Brad Thor for discovering and mentoring Jack Carr.Fans are eternally grateful!

This is not the first novel on infectious disease, nor will it be the last. It is however the most significant one you will ever read.Brad Thor looked at hemorrhagic disease from Central Africa as a bioweapon some 7-8 yrs ago when Ebola first showed up in the West. Kyle Mills in LETHAL AGENT looked at a MERS type disease, like SARS, that emerged from Yemen as a bioweapon that was brought into the USA by the Mexican drug cartels. Mitch Rapp was left with how to stop it. Mathew Snyder in THE HIDDEN VECTOR looked at a weaponized Marburg disease.

Jack Carr addresses the Marburg Virus for what it is, the deadliest disease on the planet. It is a REAL virus that the Russians weaponized years ago. And now, you are asking yourself- how did James Reece get involved in biological warfare? Does he contract the disease like Mitch Rapp did from the MERS variant from Yemen?

You will see in THE DEVIL’S HAND how a multi-theme storyline is developed with each having a separate cast of characters that then become intertwined and move the protagonist to a stunning end. It is a brilliant piece of writing, carefully crafted, exacting in its execution of the storyline, leaving no loose ends to speak of. The book and its ending will leave you stunned, doing an OMG when you realize that Jack Carr is probably telling you in factual terms exactly how biowarfare control will be implemented with CONTAINMENT on domestic US soil.

I preface my opinion by stating I worked medical associations in DC for 3 decades and had exposure to the latest research in the field of virology/immunology while working in programs with some of the top researchers in the world. It was the time of AIDS, malaria, SARS, and the emergence of the hemorrhagic diseases such as Dengue Fever, Ebola, and Marburg. They strike quickly and deadly. It goes beyond high fevers, chills, headaches, aching muscles and pain. YOU BLEED FROM EVERY ORIFICE AS YOUR TISSUE DEGRADES. From your mouth, nose, eyes, ears, penis, anus, and vagina. The viral pathogens cause cellular and organ breakdown in the body. Everything turns to mush. It is a brutal way to die. It is a brutal way for a family member to watch you die. The virus is found in EVERY bodily fluid - saliva, tears, mucus, semen, urine, feces, blood.

That is the truth of hemorrhagic viruses. They are highly contagious and governments do everything in their power to contain these dangerous diseases. Sometimes, even the unthinkable.

When Ebola appeared in the US in 2014, the public got the point, deadly diseases are only a 24hr jet flight away from your doorstep. A vaccine for Ebola was developed after a fashion. But the research goes on. A virology researcher in Africa was recognized this past week for having developed a test that determines within 40 minutes if you have been exposed to any of a dozen different deadly viral diseases. I see it as coming to an international airport near you, the ones servicing overseas flights to the US and Europe. This is so important, if you test positive, then you don’t get on a plane. Period. I mention this because as of 3/31/21, there are some 86 individuals in quarantine in Ohio, Kentucky, Oregon, and Washington with exposure to Ebola from Guinea and the DRCongo.

Jack Carr writes a dynamic, absorbing, entertaining, jaw dropping tale, but the real importance is from what you will learn regarding the handling of hemorrhagic diseases in the US as a worse case scenario. Or any pandemic disease that may occur. So heed Jack’s subtle warning and pay careful attention. Ebola is in the here and now. Do not write this story off as fiction. It may be your future reality.

Jack Carr has a brilliant mind, like a diamond, so multi-faceted and knowledge in so many different areas, including medicine. He is not only a terrific sportsman, but has a handle on the world body politic and history, a keen understanding of how Washington DC operates, the Deep State if you will, and provides an analytical overview of how DC really operates,from the Club Aegis,which is a renaming of the Cosmos Club,just a block or two from the White House, and even Camp David.

When I lived in DC,the Cosmos Club was a male-only bastion where few women every graced their portals. It was also the most well known power broker in the city. An invite to dinner/drinks there meant “you had arrived.” Careers were made and destroyed in these political haunts.

I especially loved and appreciated the detailed synopsis of political and military decision-making as it pertained to the Middle East and elaborates, without embellishment, policy creation and legislation, or more precisely, Executive Orders that brought us to a 20 year ongoing war in the Middle East. It has brought to a head the insidious hatred of the United States that manifests itself with the never ending growth of jihadists, rising from the madras Islamic schools of the Middle East/Asia, to families seeking vengeance for their lost family members.These wars have not come to a conclusion in over 20 years. Is it time to alter, change the paradigm?

We have taken out the bin Ladens and the Soleimanis, but what has it changed?Just as we use intell to track, trace and study them, they are reciprocating.

Jack weaves an intricate geopolitical and historical lesson into the opening chapters of this book. He opens the actual plot of the novel in such a place as the Cosmos Club called Club Aegis where hatred of a political opponent has incited spying and plotting. The focus of the meeting? James Reece and why he met the President at Camp David. In many ways, this opening shot across the bow is reflective of what actually goes on in DC. Unless you lived there, many do not realize the bottom line is one of DC being very much like a small Southern town with secrets and everyone knows everyone else’s business. There is no such thing as a secret in DC. Not really, just unspoken ones. Exhibit A, what is unfolding now with the illustrious senator from Florida.

Reece’s meeting with POTUS seems to bring Reece full circle. Even the president seeks closure in the death of his fiancé in the fall of the towers from 9/11. His request, eliminate those final vestiges of the planning, financing, and execution of 9/11/2001. He asks it of the one man capable of understanding the excruciating pain of senseless loss and the motive for the request. It helps to know the President has his back with citing an Executive Order to prevent incarceration or worse if he is caught. Basically, Reece has been handed a “Get out of jail free” card. And it allows him to go after the assassin of Freddy Strain. James Reece responds with a “yes.”

Possibilities also open up in Reece’s life with ace reporter/investigator Katie Buranek who he has trained to kill to defend herself. James is determined to never lose a loved one again! Suffice to say,Carr has possibilities as a romance writer with delivery of the best line I’ve read in some time on the subject. James and Katie have just finished dinner and she invites him back to her apartment for dessert. He’s agreeable and asks what it is. Her response- “you’re looking at it.” Loved it!

Jack Carr also creates interesting villains to say the least. One, Erik Sawyer,a CEO of a special ops organization, Masada, who betrays his country; The other, Edward Thwaite, an August senator, out to capture a stolen presidency by cutting the legs out from under the current president and utilizes spying to do it. They see Reece as the angle to take the president down.

A long planned terrorist attack is unfolding, implemented and orchestrated by Hafez Qassem, of the Iranian Quds, and Chief of Iranian Intelligence in the United States. Cells are activated, long ago emigrated Iranians, virologists, are preparing weaponized Marburg. It is noted that James Reece was in the immediate vicinity when two of the “sleepers” are killed. The hunter soon becomes the hunted. An uptick in the planned event occurs. Assaults are launched to eliminate Reece and Katie. My girl has learned how to kick some ass! And an aging Russian virologist leads Qassem to the perfect plot to obliterate the USA, where a nation turns on itself.

Catastrophic disaster strikes American cities. Katie Buranek, and her CDC college friend,get drawn deeper into covert action to provide answers and a pivotal solution to prevent annihilation of Americans. The clock is ticking, it’s a race against time. Who lives and who dies? A situation not unlike a patient with a gangrenous leg occurs. Do you amputate, or do you wait, and hope for the best outcome with antibiotics. Apply the analogy.

Governmental actions are dictated by protocols established long ago. My opinion, I think they actually exist because there are no other options and the American public does not like taking orders. The attitude is it will never happen to THEM. Readers should start paying close attention at this juncture just in case they miss the case in point while enjoying this great adventure.

The only clue to unraveling this crisis is that two patients hospitalized with an unknown hemorrhagic disease, that is spreading to thousands of affected Americans,are also on the list that the President of the United States handed to James Reece.

This is NOT a book to pick up, start reading, and think you can set it down for later. With 500 pages, you will need at least 4 or 5 hours to finish the last half of the book. As I said, its plot is stunning, the response to the attack/threat is an OMG moment, reading it is a non-stop adrenaline-pumping rush of elevated blood pressure. The fights are gory and you better have a strong stomach if you are good at visualization. You really do question whether there is a solution other than the one posed by the military. And you need to learn the lessons being taught.

Jack Carr established himself as a contender with staying power, at the pinnacle of top thriller writers, with SAVAGE SON. I didn’t think he could outdo himself in astonishing, breath-taking, intense action in a novel. I was wrong. THE DEVIL’S HAND takes it a step beyond. Several steps beyond. The novel is stunning, not just for the implications relating to such events, which I believe are true. It is a stunning novel for its development of intertwining plots and character development.It leads the readers to where they really do not want to go but must. It may give some nightmares or PTSD flashbacks, so be forewarned.

This book, THE DEVIL’S HAND, establishes Jack as a top writer for the century in my opinion. Not only in the craftsmanship displayed in his writing, but his examination of the darker, savage side of man, a kind of man who knows the job may be distasteful, but has to be done. He portrays scenarios that the average man never considered or believes will never happen. And he truthfully lays it out how he believes the government, the military would handle such a catastrophic medical disaster. Knowing what I do about virology from long ago, I think he is correct in his assessment. Some may think the book audacious. I think he nailed it!

THE DEVIL’S HAND will place, or should place Jack Carr as winner of THRILLER OF THE YEAR AWARD.The book will be the one that all others will have to beat. After reading it, don’t be discouraged authors, he has spent the past 35 years thinking, dreaming up plots such as this. His 20+years of experience as a Navy SEAL has made him an expert in envisioning such a plot. Jack’s literary works will be dissected by university literature courses in the years to come. Few others can match him for intensity, plot and character development, jaw-dropping action, and a breath-taking finish. Or lessons in reality.

THE DEVIL’S HAND is a magnificent, SUPERB, work of literary art. Take a moment to be appreciative of this man’s skill in crafting a story. Also take to heart the lessons of government, policy decision making, and facets of modern warfare that he is teaching you. I wish I could rate it higher, I give it a 10+*. I don’t know how he can improve on the next novel, but I sure hope he continues with the James Reece saga, and strives to best his other novels with the next one. A stunning work of artistry in so many ways.

Congratulations,Jack, I’m so glad I pre-ordered the hard copy too. FANS, Be glad you got your copy already. I reread this book three times.This is a book that will be selling out immediately. It should put Jack Carr at the top of the best sellers list for at least the next 5-6 months. My advice, Atria Books had better place NOW an order for second printing!
Profile Image for Abibliofob.
1,136 reviews61 followers
April 20, 2021
James Reece is back in The Devil's Hand by Jack Carr. Great book and a great way to deal with the pandemic. I first read about Marburg virus in a book by Tom Clancy some years ago and this is another great work of fiction with a new twist on the subject. The characters are as usual well written and I really like the attention to details and equipment in this series. I also find it entertaining when a podcast or book is mentioned where the reader can get to know the author better is mentioned. I also like it when we get a list of things that has been a part of the research behind a book and I don't think I ever saw such a long list in a work of fiction before.
Profile Image for Josh Olds.
883 reviews80 followers
October 18, 2021
This is one of those reviews where, if I’d done a bit more research, I probably would have learned enough from the context to know to pass on the book. The Devil’s Hand is the fourth novel from Jack Carr, a former SEAL sniper who has used his knowledge of warfare to bring gritty realism to his novels. The Terminal List, Carr’s debut novel, is now a series on Amazon starring Chris Pratt so whatever I think about the novel—it hardly matters. This type of book has an audience and they’re eating it up.

Our protagonist is former Navy SEAL James Reece. Reece is no longer with the military due to…things (read books 1-3). In The Devil’s Hand, he gets called in by none other than the President himself to do a little revenge. The President’s fiancée died in 9/11 and the sole driving force of his political career seems to be geared toward exacting revenge on those who were involved and got away. To this end, he calls Reece. Reece works outside the lines, outside the law, and will do anything to accomplish his mission. It’s a gleeful combination of violence, patriotism, and lawbreaking in the name of the alleged greater good that should be disturbing.

I don’t know that I like former Navy SEALs writing fiction about Navy SEALS who do war crimes. I’ll leave it at that. I’m a pacifist by conviction, but I do enjoy a good fictional action thriller. Thought I’d give Carr a shot and well—other authors have commended his accuracy and realism and if that’s true, I redouble my commitment to pacifism.

The focus on 9/11 and the glorification of violence and death is almost to the point of parody. Carr waxes eloquent about how the men who signed up to fight after the Towers were the kind of men who knew where to sit at on airplanes to best protect others. It’s a weird, violent patriotism that puts on some major rose-colored glasses and idealizes The War on Terror while yet seeming almost gleeful that there are more terrorists to kill.

Plot and character development take a back seat to action, preferably violent. Carr attempts to organically weave in the past storylines, but to middling effect. I ended up reading a bunch of reviews of books 1-3 in order to understand where we got to book 4. Usually thrillers like this are able to function as a standalone. I wouldn’t say this is the case for The Devil’s Hand.

What plot there is—The President hires a mercenary—is so over-the-top that it makes Chuck Norris films look realistic. But I guess that’s what this is. It’s an 80s action movie in 2020s clothing. It has its place, I guess, but I’d rather just go read Rambo again.
Profile Image for Jeramie Edwards.
12 reviews
March 12, 2021
The way Jack Carr weaves history and fiction is a thing of beauty, James Reece is a man on a mission in “the Devils Hand”. This one puts Reece in the conversation with Harvath and Rapp as the best in the genre (if he already wasn’t) the action is riveting! I couldn’t put the book down, I HAD to see what happens next! Carr has continued to up his game with every novel and “the devils hand” is no exception, it was fun seeing old characters and meeting new ones that I hope will stick around for a while. I’m already chomping at the bit for what comes next! The devils hand is a MUST read for thriller fans!!
Profile Image for Scott A. Miller.
524 reviews17 followers
December 31, 2021
Probably the best Reese book yet. Also something of a history lesson. Carr is great. I really am looking forward to the Reese TV series.

The timely reminder here is that there is much worse out there than COVID 19. Can we trust our government to protect us? Are there corrupt politicians at the highest level willing to sell us, or even kill us just for power? Read this and see what you think.

If that doesn’t scare the shit out of you, it will certainly be one hell of a thriller. This was the perfect final book for 2021.
Profile Image for Henry.
669 reviews34 followers
May 5, 2021
Number 4 in the Terminal List series and by far the best since the first installment in the series (Terminal List).
Profile Image for Micah.
80 reviews6 followers
May 5, 2023
Jack Carr lives, as do we all, in the shadow of the master: Tom Clancy.

He puts a twist on the formula:

Yes, he describes how things work, guns, bombs, diseases. Yes, he writes complicated technothrillers. Yes, he is a conservative. Yes he is , yes he is.

But he is also a sponsored social media tacticool influencer. His resume is his sales pitch. Ex-Navy SEAL. Sniper. Big game hunter. Land Rover owner. Middle aged white man. Father, Husband, Patriot, Son. The tier one beard and EDC hatchet are his calling cards. He's not a businessman he's a Business, man. He writes books with the vibe of a Highsnobiety dot com style guide – a shopping list of lifestyle brands and high speed/low drag equipment manufacturers – vertically integrated into the retail ecosystem of the discerning upper middle class right wing consumer. The target audiences for his art are people who like action, sure, and people who like the military and people who like capital C conservative politics (though not necessarily the Republican politicians who embody those politics). But those audiences are secondary.

Jack Carr writes books first and foremost for the type of guy who self describes as a "gear guy". I love it.

Tom Clancy captured the wallets of 80's America by writing dad-vibe violence fic for the spec sheet nerds and Janes Guide owners in all of us. Jack Carr found his niche appealing to our inner r/gunporn reddit posters.

Having done his revenge-as-origin-story take on Without Remorse (The Terminal List, soon to be a prestige Amazon Web Series) Jack now does what is essentially a stripped down remake of Clancy's encyclopedic late period magnum opus: Executive Orders. A driven president. A country recovering from disaster. Ebola. Iran. Emergency powers and contact tracing. Domestic unrest and military maneuvers. Carr seems to operate at his peak when he's inspired: his extended fourth act homage to The Most Dangerous Game in the last installment of his James Reece series, Savage Son, was at the time the best thing he'd written yet.

The Terminal List, and its heavily Clancy indebted sequel True Believer, both sucked. But Carr has been getting better at writing this sort of book. Savage Son turned some sort of corner. It wasn't bad. The Devil's Hand is better.

As is increasingly the case with James Reece novels, Carr starts the book slow. Clancy again: He seems eager to lose track of the plot early in a tangle of minor characters, historical context, digressive subplots, and technical infodumps. Big chunks of the book early and late are given over to extended blog-post political manifestos.

This is where Carr leaves his elders behind.

Despite the fact that he is essentially biting an entire book off the guy who made the right wing technothriller a thing, this is where you gotta given Carr credit. He innovates into the contemporary.

Jack Carr writes books for today.

The world of The Devil's Hand is hyper-current. America has just recovered from Covid-19. We are still shaken by the Trump presidency. Antifa gets co-billing with the Ayatollahs. The politics of the Nineties are insufficient to the moment, so there are no lengthy speeches by Jack Ryan, no discussions of tax policy or cold war realpolitik. There is some constitutional lawyering – the founding document is God's gospel after all – but it feels perfunctory, which is, I guess, realism.

That violence was always gonna happen, man. Principle is relative to process. Legality is a veneer on the inevitable.

You see, unlike Clancy's stodgy Reagan Era conservatism, Carr is a libertarian neo-populist sort. He likes cops, but also likes the second amendment and his god given right to Not Be Bothered. He likes the military and spies but he hates surveillance and corrupt bureaucracy. He agrees with Republican Party policy but despises Republican Party politicians. He knows to many facts about history and politics to be idealistic, but his ideology requires a measure of naivete to smooth over its internal inconsistencies. He can't square the circle between his love of the enforcers of authoritarianism and his desire for autonomy so he becomes reductive.

Everything comes down to the edge of a knife. Like the assassins of Julius Caesar flailing against the arc of history, or Michael Mann struggling with the future in the final act of Blackhat (another ripped from the headlines technothriller obsessed with America's self destructive reaction to threats and the problems posed by foreign infiltration of communication networks): the swarming nodes of an intractable problem are aggregated to a single figurehead – a sin eater is eliminated by blunt men wielding improvised blades.

It works as a thriller. As a novel of ideas... less so.

A major subplot of the book is explicitly staged like one of those bullshit Federalist articles that purport to be advice from a conservative to liberals: "This is how you win, be exactly like me but nicer."

I don't know whether it was sincere, I can't tell. Unironic? Silly? It reads like wish fulfillment.

What if there was a capital D Democrat who didn't care about culture war stuff? What if he liked the troops and tax breaks? What if, in addition to social security and limited Medicare expansion, he was also into assassination?

Modern problems require modern solutions.

These sections are the thematic spine of the novel, but they drag.

Carr makes up for it though. While the ending is anticlimactic, last half of The Devil's Hand moves like a freight train – gun fights on gunfights on knife fights on riots – featuring several of the striking images that Carr has become an expert at conjuring (perhaps the best one: A guy in a hazmat suit with a Sig pistol walks up an empty suburban street – fluttering curtains, fast food wrappers rolling across the asphalt like tumbleweeds – a gunfighter going to war with the plague itself).

Carr shines with the action: He loves to stage a fight from multiple perspectives, splitting up the beats across time and replaying them. This time in slow motion. This time, voyeuristically, through night vision. This time in a mission debrief. He revels in the description of violence (this book has the genre requisite insanely brutal torture sequence, and boy is it a thing that i absolutely read, yessir!) He likes to describe a tactic and then show his characters using it later. He likes to reference things you've heard before:

"get off the x"

"slow is smooth smooth is fast"

"tap, rack, bang, clear"

Has Garand Thumb said it? Lukas Botkin? Marcus Lutrell? Was it in a Clint Smith rant or a John Lovett soliloquy? Odds are a character will think it as they kill. A thrill for those of us who spend too much time on guntube.

Which is kinda how the whole book works. Its specifically for people in a demographic.

If you know you know.

You might not like the whole thing, you will see its flaws and you will roll your eyes, maybe, at its excesses. But its for you. You asked for this. It's fast food, it's crack. Adrenaline x ideology. It's a scratched itch; you will be satisfied.

I repeat (I cannot repeat enough): I love this shit.

And if you don't know... well, it's in the lineage of Clancy after all: wait for the TV show.
1 review
May 22, 2021

The author tries too hard to show his reader that he has expensive taste. OK story but his writing his immature.
Profile Image for Aniruddha M.
170 reviews16 followers
May 5, 2021
Ex Navy-Seal James Reece is on a three pronged mission - locate and terminate some 9/11 plotters, find and stop a Bio Weapon in US and his family's killer has to be located and terminated.
Written with great authority and inside knowledge, this is a revenge laced tale full of torture and violence, quite well presented!
Do visit and read my detailed review from the link below


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Profile Image for Matt.
Author 18 books1,052 followers
May 14, 2023
4.5. A bit of a slow start, but another great installment in the series. Carr has become one of my favorite thriller writers.
Profile Image for Todd Wilkins.
87 reviews18 followers
March 21, 2021
READ MY FULL REVIEW AT Best Thriller Books

If there is one thing that fans have come to expect from any Jack Carr book it is violence of action. The intense brutality that James Reece brings down upon his enemies is second to none in the genre.

Make sure to check out the full review
Profile Image for MitchRappPod No Limits.
29 reviews5 followers
August 22, 2021
Well, I guess you could say that my thoughts on Jack Carr can best be summed up in the form of a limerick:

A warrior, a husband, a father, a SEAL.
James Reece or Jack Carr doth this reveal?
A man on a mission,
Surpassing competition,
To every thriller reader, his works surely appeal.

If you haven't picked up the James Reece series, do so IMMEDIATELY! You can listen to our interview with Jack Carr on Ep.51 of No Limits: The Mitch Rapp Podcast at https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast...
Profile Image for Soo.
2,598 reviews264 followers
December 30, 2021

Yay for libraries!

Not sure if I will continue the series. This was the last book available at my library. It took a while for me to like the main character, but I've become a fan after the first two books. The drawback for the series is that the stories come across as trying to be too serious/politically rooted in current events. For the majority of this book, I didn't think I was reading a story about Reese so much as a fictionalized book about international war and politics. The focus was more on the factoids (real or not) than a thriller/espionage plot.
Profile Image for Chetan.
291 reviews5 followers
April 16, 2021
Another brilliant installment! Jack Carr is one of the best in the business when it comes to writing thrillers. He has the background to suit and his methodology is on another level. This is one damn fine work of fiction.
Profile Image for Brent.
428 reviews52 followers
April 20, 2021
Easily the best spy/military thriller I have read in a while. Also easily Jack Carr's best book since The Terminal List. I've chided other books for writing Covid 19 into the narrative when I didn't think it served a purpose, but Jack Carr was given little choice here as Covid hit while he was writing this book and due to the nature of the plot had to be included. It was done masterfully as it integrates seamlessly with the story involving a bio weapon.

The action is incredible as always. Carr really knows how to write those violent gruesome scenes and get the most out of them. What has improved here in this book though is nearly every other facet of his writing. The pacing is better. We get right to the point and never get bogged down by unnecessary backstories or side characters. The character relationships are better and some of the side characters more interesting. However, characters are never going to be the focus of a book like this. It's all about the plot and getting you hooked. Mission accomplished. I haven't read a page turner like that in a long time. I think I read over 200 pages today to finish it. The plot is timely, relevant, and you can tell it's meticulously researched.

Highest of recommends for folks that enjoy this genre or have enjoyed Carr's other thrillers. In my opinion this puts him up a level on par with the best in the genre, and in fact quite a bit better than recent books by his peers. Greany and Carr are my new 1 and 2 in the genre with Thor and Mills left well in the dust.
Profile Image for Pop.
380 reviews12 followers
October 7, 2022
As I said in my review of Carr’s Savage Son, the first half of this offering was a pain to get through but again necessary for the remaining ones. Wow, a book that gave me the the “Chills”. Couldn’t put it down once the story took off, finished it without putting it down(except when I needed to take care of my personal biological needs). 😊
Profile Image for Jen.
1,882 reviews159 followers
August 2, 2022
This is kind of a two-for-one kind of thing - you get the general "we hate Americans and want to kill them all" and a whole deadly virus thing that's going to kill everyone.

I loved the president. What a great guy. I had to fast forward through a lot of the torture scenes (as I always do, don't want that in my head thanks), but overall this was a great read. Ray Porter is always a treat.
Profile Image for Karl.
81 reviews1 follower
April 21, 2021
Don't get me wrong, it's still a good book just not a great book when compared to the first three. I was expecting LCDR James Reece to go on a rampage again and he was even given the green light by the US president but, unfortunately, the action really never got going. The plot did have some interesting and thought-provoking issues, e.g. How would America act with a virus that had a 90% mortality rate?; how would martial law be imposed in order to force quarantine of infected individuals?; and finally Would the US government bomb infected cities in order to save the population as a whole? While I don't believe any of these will occur they are definitely existential questions that need to be addressed, as we read in the book "Hope is not a course of action".
Profile Image for Maddie Taylor.
27 reviews6 followers
April 18, 2021
"If someone comes to kill you, rise up and kill them first." - The Talmud

The Devil’s Hand takes you into the mind of the enemies. The beginning introduces you to quite a few players that cause the big problem and delve into the psych of why they are doing what they do. James Reece ends up right in the middle of everything after a meeting with the US President. The search for revenge gets him into a much bigger mess. As always, Jack manages how to write some brutal, and some definitely disturbing at times sequences and I love every second of it. This 4th book is his best yet and I can’t wait to see where he goes next!
9 reviews
April 18, 2021
I didn't read the first three books but I decided to read this one anyway because I saw an interview where the author expressed his ignorant views about leftism on the increasingly crappy Joe Rogan Experience.

This book is really just a bunch of right-wing propaganda. You've got some anti-gun control propaganda in there, and there's also a character who is basically a war profiteer and John Birch Society-type wingnut who whines about cancel culture and says things like "Breitbart was right." I ended up not finishing the whole thing because it was so bad and so right-wing, it made me sick!
Profile Image for Joshua.
243 reviews
April 22, 2021
WOW! Best one yet. Action packed and fast paced. Get after it.
Profile Image for AWolf.
82 reviews2 followers
July 2, 2021
This is a pretty simple story: James Reece, former SEAL and all-around badass "patriot," takes on Jihadists from the Islamic Republic of Iran introducing bioweapons into the USA to bring down the "Great Satan." It appears to be pretty well researched and [generally] well written, with only a modicum of dramatic license for this kind of novel. But the author seemingly feels driven, by ideology and/or wanting to sell more books, to interject far-right politics into the story.

This is a tough one for me - somewhere between 3 and 5 stars depending on where in the book I was reading. On one hand, I believe Carr has risen to perhaps one of the best half-dozen or so writers of this genre [thriller/military/SpecOps/spy]. On the other hand, Carr goes out of his way to unnecessarily promote far-right nutty politics, even including Faux News, Tucker Carson, and Joe Rogen - and the pride our protagonist, James Reece, displays from his journalist girlfriend publishing in Townhall and Nat'l Review. Hmmm?
Profile Image for Bookreporter.com Mystery & Thriller.
1,910 reviews33.8k followers
April 25, 2021
Author and ex-Navy SEAL Jack Carr's latest thriller, THE DEVIL’S HAND, boasts something for everyone --- that is, if you love books filled with violence, war, gore and a thirst for revenge. But this authoritative and authentic-sounding novel is about much more than a taste for blood. It's also a history of America's quest for global dominance versus the Muslim world’s quest for the international triumph of Sharia law, the destruction of democracy everywhere, and the humiliation and ultimate defeat of America the Devil.

THE DEVIL’S HAND represents a rather strange combination of genres. It's partly historical fiction and partly a semi-alternative world narrative featuring the U.S. of the present day, with an entirely fictional president in 2021. The beginning of the story consists of a quick episode involving Muslim extremists in the process of preparing the infamous 9/11 attack on America. We then meet Alec Christensen, the man who will be president. He is dining with his father at a restaurant near the Twin Towers while his fiancée is in the target building. The young man sees the planes and the attack, and he tries bravely and desperately to save the love of his life, but his attempt is futile.

However, Christensen is not the main character. That distinction belongs to James Reece, a former Navy SEAL, an ex-spy and a master of all things military, political and grossly violent. Reece, like Christensen (now the president), is out for revenge. While the president's targets are the 9/11 perpetrators, Reece wants to find and kill the traitor who was responsible for the murders of his wife, child and best friend. Aware of Reece's reputation, the president sets up an ultra-secret meeting with the warrior and sends him on a mission to rid the world of those killers. All of these conditions serve as the foundation for an intriguing and suspenseful plot, but in this long and very complicated novel, the two characters' searches for revenge are the side dish rather than the main course.

The primary plot involves a deadly conspiracy cooked up by Iranian political and underground figures, the purpose of which is quite simple: to demolish America. But their plan is fittingly complex as Iranian operatives have managed to steal a sample of a deadly Russian-developed virus, which is known by only a select few until the theft is accomplished. They plan to use the formula to destroy The Great Satan by manufacturing additional doses of the virus and having Iranian and Iranian-American extremists spray it into the air of a few select cities.

As Americans collapse and quickly become mortally ill, a mob rush to already-overburdened hospitals will quickly begin. The American government and scientific community will assume that the virus, like COVID-19, is spread by airborne droplets passed person-to-person. In order to contain it, the government will be forced to surround the infected areas to ensure that no one escapes and spreads it, and then they will be forced to bomb their own cities into oblivion. So the antagonists plan to force the U.S. into the tragic and ugly position of having to destroy thousands of its own citizens, and the collateral damage will be the inevitable spreading of distrust and violence.

Reece's mission now morphs from simply exacting revenge into a race to save tens of thousands of American lives. He must figure out the plot and prove that the virus is not spread through person-to-person contact. The twisty plot is brilliantly conceived and effectively executed. Every element is exquisitely described in excruciating and often painful detail: the weapons, the political organizations and machinations, the destructive plans, the mano-a-mano violence, the history of global conflicts, the flaws of government responses to crises, and the ugliness of wartime conflict.

Some disturbing plot, character and thematic issues arise (for some of us, anyway) that thread their way, at times openly and at other times subtly, throughout the entire novel. Violence and revenge are glorified; the book virtually begs the reader to enjoy cruelty, suffering, blood and gore. Islam --- and Muslims in general --- appear, without meaningful exception, to be rigid exponents of the necessary extermination of all "infidels." And even on the "good guys'" side, the primary characteristics of Americans and the American government specifically are viewed pretty ferociously. The government is corrupt, deceitful, and guilty of selfish and stupid motivations and offensively careless behaviors. Finally, the political and military effectiveness of a democratic state when pitted against authoritarian regimes is (perhaps all too accurately!) questioned.

The end result is a scary, condemnatory sketch of human nature and our apparently unquenchable thirst for conflict and dominance. It's all rather brilliantly but depressingly and pessimistically presented. Keeping all of those factors in mind, if you read the novel thoughtfully and carefully, you will come to your own conclusions about the validity of both its openly stated and implicitly suggested attitudes.

Reviewed by Jack Kramer
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