A taut military investigation parable…
Wolf’s latest installment in the A Chelmin and Spaulding CID Mystery is a taut and action-packed page-turner that offers plenty of military tension and political intrigue. Military tensions with North Korea are on the rise. Stationed in Seoul, US Army Chief Warrant Officer Wilson Spaulding and Special Agent Rudolf Chelmin find themselves on the trail of a madman who uses bomb blasts to manipulate the stock market. As the duo dig deeper, they learn the killer is the son of a high-profile government minister. The stakes rise when the Snakeheads, a lethal international gang, gets involved and begin to escalate attacks on the CID agents and their ROK police ally. Spaulding and Chelmin must do everything in their power to apprehend the killer while dealing with the dangerous Snakeheads. Wolf infuses the thrilling plot with candid insights about trust, betrayal, loyalty, duty, integrity, and what it means to be human while capturing the essence of dirty machinations of international politics. The narrative is engrossing and pacing swift as Wolf brings the individual perspectives of his characters to life, pulling readers right down into their psyche. Spaulding, with his sharp intellect and empathy makes for a worthy hero. The fiercely determined Chelmin easily wins readers’ hearts. Asher is equally compelling and so does the rest of the cast of secondary characters. A former Army combat photographer in Vietnam, Wolf draws on his experiences to lend authenticity to the plot. His writing is assured as he offers detailed descriptions of military action and investigative techniques, diplomatic maneuvers, financial frauds and stock-market manipulations, and international politics. He skillfully sets the power-hungry foreign nationals as clear villains while providing plenty of insight into their culture and motivations, allowing readers to better understand the complexities of the chaotic Asian terrains. Heavily shadowed with military jargon, the novel is given weight by its focus on international politics, terrorism, and the characters’ interpersonal dynamics. The Republic of Korea as a country of contradictions makes for an intriguing setting, and Wolf deftly brings it to life on the pages. He capably uses every device in the novel from red herrings to blind alleys, from understated twists to instant shocks, keeping readers thoroughly invested. This densely plotted foray into the violent world of international politics is sure to wow the fans of finely crafted military thrillers. Recommended to fans of Lee Child and James Rollins.
Snakeheads: A Chelmin and Spaulding CID Mystery
By Marvin Wolf
Pub date June 28, 2021
Price $16.95 (USD) Paperback, $0.00 Kindle edition