A great read . . . gritty and authentic
A terrific debut. Charters is definitely one to watch.
BOLT ACTION is a stunningly assured debut, utterly credible in every detail and filled with fascinating characters. It builds to a nail-biting, gut-wrenching climax aboard a transatlantic jetliner that will have readers turning pages in thrilling desperation to find out how this brilliantly complex plot finally resolves itself. And in Capt. Tristesse Merritt, a beautiful, complicated, utterly feminine fighting soldier, Charlie Charters has created the most intriguing female character in contemporary thrillers since Stieg Larsson's Lisbeth Salander.
Take a pinch of Gerald Seymour's terse characterisation, add a sprinkle of Frederick Forsyth's peerless research, flavour with the jaunty cynicism of Robert Harris, and place in a pressure cooker for a few hours. Voila! BOLT ACTION, so hot it fairly sizzles off the page. Charters' debut novel has the sure touch of a seasoned author. The subtle ways in which he interweaves his storylines, and the confidence with which he carries off his terrifying hijack scenario, ensure you'll want to devour this in one sitting. And to those of you who pick this up in an airport, remember that it's only fiction . . . so far.
BOLT ACTION has all the ingredients of a terrific thriller: it's exciting, well-plotted and packed with interesting factual information about airport security, hijacks, the military, and so forth. But what makes it really stand out is the sympathy Charlie Charters feels for his characters. They're not the one-dimensional cardboard cut-outs you'd associate with this sort of fast-paced genre fiction. Rather, they're flesh and blood human beings with real frailties and because Charters cares about them you will too. A really first-rate debut.
A seriously entertaining read from an author who delivers action and suspense in equal measure.