Jack Bauer and John Rain In Print

On my trip last week, I tried a few times to read Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth but just couldn’t get into on the road.  So – I gobbled down Barry Eisler’s new John Rain book (The Last Assassin) and the new 24 book (24 Declassified: Operation Hell Gate).  Both were awesome and helped pass the time on a couple of the flights where my brain was baked but I didn’t feel like sleeping.

Barry Eisler is in my top five favorite mental floss writer category right now.  The Last Assassin is book number five – you can’t start here – you have to start at the beginning with Rain Fall.  The book started off a little slow as Eisler spent a lot of the first 30 pages catching up new readers on the history and the main characters that we were going to spend time with.  However, he hit his stride around page 50 and the rest of the book was impossible to put down.  This book has a little more set up and character development and a little less action, but I was still really happy with the balance – Rain is getting older so you’d expect him to slow down and be more pensive and introspectful.  A+.

I thought I was going to have to wait until January 2007 for my next round of 24 when I stumbled on 24 Declassified: Operation Hell Gate.  There’s a whole series of 24 books coming out (yes – I’ve ordered them all) – this is the first one I’ve read.  It follows the 24 format, but is set in the past (Jack is head of CTU Los Angeles, Nina is Jack’s chief of staff, Ryan is still a bureaucratic ninny, Milo is still an annoying nerd.)  The action takes place in CTU Los Angeles and New York City, which is a delicious change of pace, although Jack still manages to get across parts of New York in impossibly short periods of time.  The action is non-stop although it takes a little time to get used to the descriptions of the characters and what they are thinking vs. just the pure action of the TV show.  However, it was riveting – envision me standing in a one hour security line at Dulles, realizing I’m going to miss my plane, but not caring all that much while I read my book in line.  A+.