Vile Means is a political spy thriller written by Steve Dimodica. The story focuses on the political situation surrounding the Panama Canal’s return by the United States to Panama’s sovereignty. The setting of the novel takes place in 1999, and it involves an intricate plot in which a rogue Mossad officer, together with a Swiss banker, use a Balkan war criminal to destabilize the region. In turn, that Balkan war criminal, along with his foot soldiers, attack Central American villages and cause massive damage as a result. Those behind this act of sabotage have their own reasons for it and hope to extract a large profit at the expense of ordinary citizens. When Jessica Flekk, a CIA case officer learns of the invasion, she, under the auspices of the US government, assembles a black ops team of highly trained mercenaries to get to the root cause of the insurrection and learn the real motivations behind it. When she and her team finally reach the destination, they quickly learn that they are involved in a high-stakes geopolitical game where everyone is a pawn, and, thus, expendable, and that the entire operation is just a cover for something much bigger and much more sinister.
I really enjoyed reading Vile Means. The author, who has a long career in the Special Forces, as well as Military Intelligence, writes a story that feels authentic and believable. The plot is extremely intense and fast-paced with lots of run-and-gun action. Dimodica wastes no time in long introductions and descriptions and cuts straight to the chase (no pun intended) from the very first page. In addition, while the main setting of the book is in Panama, the complex storyline shuttles readers to other countries, such as Israel and Liechtenstein. Besides the fast-paced action, it was very interesting to read about the driving forces behind the story, such as shadow economy and how it can be a major driving force in conflicts around the world, as well as how human greed can lead to the suffering of others.
All in all, Vile Means is a really good political spy thriller. Steve Dimodica clearly knows his stuff and how to keep the reader engaged throughout the span of the novel.
|Page Count||392 pages|
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|Category||Mystery, Crime, Thriller|