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When top CIA operative Sam Baker rescues a kidnapped CNN reporter and her cameraman from the hands of Palestinian terrorists, he uncovers a plan to devastate Israel. Unable to stop the attack in time, Israel is rocked to the core as over 4,000 of its youngest and most vulnerable citizens are slaughtered. Four years later, retired and enjoying a new life, his own family is s When top CIA operative Sam Baker rescues a kidnapped CNN reporter and her cameraman from the hands of Palestinian terrorists, he uncovers a plan to devastate Israel. Unable to stop the attack in time, Israel is rocked to the core as over 4,000 of its youngest and most vulnerable citizens are slaughtered. Four years later, retired and enjoying a new life, his own family is slaughtered in a bungled attempt on his life. Dealing with his would-be killers, Sam sends a warning to his brother, Senator Charles Baker, a presidential front-runner, that he too is about to be assassinated. Sam’s hunch is right and thanks to the quick actions of a Secret Service agent, the Senator is saved. Sam is left with no choice but to leave his new life and revisit a life he had left far behind. After the devastating attack on its children, Israel’s leaders unleash an old and top secret plan in retaliation – ‘Project Ararat’. Rebecca Cohen, mother of one of the slaughtered six-year-olds and ex-Mossad assassin begs to be allowed to help in whatever way she can. With vengeance driving her on, Rebecca uncovers an even greater risk to her country and to America. The terrorists have managed to secure five nuclear weapons and plan to strike Israel and America As Sam and Rebecca unravel the truth, their paths weave perilously together and they become unwitting pawns as their governments are more deeply embroiled in events than anyone would have thought possible. As the nuclear deadline looms, we find out just what happens when you push a country too far… Best clear your diary - you won't want to put this one down once you've started!!!


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When top CIA operative Sam Baker rescues a kidnapped CNN reporter and her cameraman from the hands of Palestinian terrorists, he uncovers a plan to devastate Israel. Unable to stop the attack in time, Israel is rocked to the core as over 4,000 of its youngest and most vulnerable citizens are slaughtered. Four years later, retired and enjoying a new life, his own family is s When top CIA operative Sam Baker rescues a kidnapped CNN reporter and her cameraman from the hands of Palestinian terrorists, he uncovers a plan to devastate Israel. Unable to stop the attack in time, Israel is rocked to the core as over 4,000 of its youngest and most vulnerable citizens are slaughtered. Four years later, retired and enjoying a new life, his own family is slaughtered in a bungled attempt on his life. Dealing with his would-be killers, Sam sends a warning to his brother, Senator Charles Baker, a presidential front-runner, that he too is about to be assassinated. Sam’s hunch is right and thanks to the quick actions of a Secret Service agent, the Senator is saved. Sam is left with no choice but to leave his new life and revisit a life he had left far behind. After the devastating attack on its children, Israel’s leaders unleash an old and top secret plan in retaliation – ‘Project Ararat’. Rebecca Cohen, mother of one of the slaughtered six-year-olds and ex-Mossad assassin begs to be allowed to help in whatever way she can. With vengeance driving her on, Rebecca uncovers an even greater risk to her country and to America. The terrorists have managed to secure five nuclear weapons and plan to strike Israel and America As Sam and Rebecca unravel the truth, their paths weave perilously together and they become unwitting pawns as their governments are more deeply embroiled in events than anyone would have thought possible. As the nuclear deadline looms, we find out just what happens when you push a country too far… Best clear your diary - you won't want to put this one down once you've started!!!

30 review for Critical Error

  1. 4 out of 5

    Jim A

    This is the first book I have read by this author. I picked up on him via Amazon's "If you liked xxxx, then take a look at these authors." THE POSITIVE: It's a very fast paced thriller. The author integrates the character back stories in a fashion that doesn't bog down or detract from the story he's telling. THE NEGATIVE: The plot is totally unbelievable. Ex CIA agent targeted for assassination because his brother has become a threat to the sitting U.S. vice president. The head of the CIA, and se This is the first book I have read by this author. I picked up on him via Amazon's "If you liked xxxx, then take a look at these authors." THE POSITIVE: It's a very fast paced thriller. The author integrates the character back stories in a fashion that doesn't bog down or detract from the story he's telling. THE NEGATIVE: The plot is totally unbelievable. Ex CIA agent targeted for assassination because his brother has become a threat to the sitting U.S. vice president. The head of the CIA, and several other intelligence agencies are in on the plot as well. Then you have a couple of leaders of industry that are pulling the vice president's strings. There's also the the twist at the end that the reader may or may not see coming. Also running in the background as a second plot is the threat of Palestinians planting four nuclear devices in Israel and one on the way to the United States. While authors in the thriller genre need to make their work exciting to read, they also need to keep it a little more credible. This one missed the mark on credibility. As I wrote above, this is my first read from this author and I will give another one of his novels a try. They certainly aren't boring, just a little far fetched. EDIT: 11 April 2012. The more I think about the 'off the wall' plot line in this book, the more I appreciate what McDonald has done. The Thriller genre is overpopulated with authors and, for the most part, the plots are very similar. Mr. McDonald has broken away from that mold and thrown a curve at political/action thriller readers. Good for him.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Peter Cotter

    At the moment probably in my top 5 books for 2015. Another one I could not put down. Bet you didn't see that ending coming. Conspiracy from the US government (what's new)....forces an ex Agent back into the fold. Follow him and his merry band as they try to eliminate the corruption and deal with the upcoming world crisis. You like thrillers with twist and turns, and a little love interest thrown in, then you need to read this book.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Joleen

    My only issue with this book is there were a lot of typos. Other than that it was a good mystery with a lot of twists. I would definitely recommend it.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Sherry Gomes

    This book was incredible. Fast-paced with and unknown bad guys, fantastic twists. Just when you think you have it figured out, you find you didn't have it figured out at all. The conspiracies go right to the top of the US government. And who's who in terms of bad guys and good will keep you guessing. The only thing I didn't like was one aspect of the ending. I found it unrealistic. Still it was the end shocker and I didn't see it coming, though there were so darn many clues in the story. five ou This book was incredible. Fast-paced with and unknown bad guys, fantastic twists. Just when you think you have it figured out, you find you didn't have it figured out at all. The conspiracies go right to the top of the US government. And who's who in terms of bad guys and good will keep you guessing. The only thing I didn't like was one aspect of the ending. I found it unrealistic. Still it was the end shocker and I didn't see it coming, though there were so darn many clues in the story. five out of five stars, and then some.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Austin

    This book was really good. It was loaded with action that was non stop through the entire book. The characters were well developed and interesting. The story line kept me guessing the entire time. Also another thing I liked was how this book played out. This book has great premise to become a series because Sam could unretire he could have many more missions. The only thing I disliked was that if Sam is the MC then he wasn't a big part of this book. All in all great book.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Eric Westrope

    This was a good story, with a great plot, twists and lots of political intrigue. I would like to give it a full five stars, but settled on 4 as there are a number of grammar errors and a few spelling errors that actually made me pause while reading the story. I ended up having to go back and re-read the last sentence to understand what I had just read. Other then the errors and the fact that the story does need to be proof read more closely, the story is worth a read.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jean

    No. Just... no. I could not suspend disbelief for even a nanosecond while I read the book. The plot was so implausible so out of touch with what's really going on in the Middle East that I tossed the book away in disgust.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Subhendu Mishra

    I liked this book. It has a lot of plot twists and turns and you are always reminded that you are reading a fiction. The story could have been a bit more realistic and the author has left a few plot holes open.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Maja

    Just finished this and still thinking about the ending! Great read that grips you from page one and doesn't let go until the shocking ending.

  10. 5 out of 5

    SM

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. The only people who think the law doesn't apply to them are the criminals and the privileged. The mixture of business influence on politics doesn't seem so far fetched since January. I like Sam but he is a Mary Sue (but so was James Bond). A lot of action takes place spread across a wide ranging story. I see no condition under which Israel would give up its lands. Otherwise, a somewhat entertaining read. Kindle e-book. Old purchase, getting it off my TBR pile. ======================= When top CIA o The only people who think the law doesn't apply to them are the criminals and the privileged. The mixture of business influence on politics doesn't seem so far fetched since January. I like Sam but he is a Mary Sue (but so was James Bond). A lot of action takes place spread across a wide ranging story. I see no condition under which Israel would give up its lands. Otherwise, a somewhat entertaining read. Kindle e-book. Old purchase, getting it off my TBR pile. ======================= When top CIA operative Sam Baker rescues a kidnapped CNN reporter and her cameraman from the hands of Palestinian terrorists, he uncovers a plan to devastate Israel. Unable to stop the attack in time, Israel is rocked to the core as over 4,000 of its youngest and most vulnerable citizens are slaughtered. Four years later, retired and enjoying a new life, his own family is slaughtered in a bungled attempt on his life. Dealing with his would-be killers, Sam sends a warning to his brother, Senator Charles Baker, a presidential front-runner, that he too is about to be assassinated. Sam’s hunch is right and thanks to the quick actions of a Secret Service agent, the Senator is saved. Sam is left with no choice but to leave his new life and revisit a life he had left far behind. After the devastating attack on its children, Israel’s leaders unleash an old and top secret plan in retaliation – ‘Project Ararat’. Rebecca Cohen, mother of one of the slaughtered six-year-olds and ex-Mossad assassin begs to be allowed to help in whatever way she can. With vengeance driving her on, Rebecca uncovers an even greater risk to her country and to America. The terrorists have managed to secure five nuclear weapons and plan to strike Israel and America As Sam and Rebecca unravel the truth, their paths weave perilously together and they become unwitting pawns as their governments are more deeply embroiled in events than anyone would have thought possible. As the nuclear deadline looms, we find out just what happens when you push a country too far… Best clear your diary - you won't want to put this one down once you've started!!!

  11. 4 out of 5

    Rick Silberman

    There several ways a book can be terrible. The least worst way is when it is so poorly written that it is not actually readable. The reason this is the least worst is because if you can't get past the 2nd page you have not wasted much time on it. Far worse is when a book is written well enough to keep you engaged through to the bitter end only to discover that the entire premise was farcical and the outcome beyond preposterous. Which brings us to Critical Error. It reads like an average thriller There several ways a book can be terrible. The least worst way is when it is so poorly written that it is not actually readable. The reason this is the least worst is because if you can't get past the 2nd page you have not wasted much time on it. Far worse is when a book is written well enough to keep you engaged through to the bitter end only to discover that the entire premise was farcical and the outcome beyond preposterous. Which brings us to Critical Error. It reads like an average thriller up until the end. However, upon reaching the "surprise" ending, you realize exactly how ill-conceived and poorly thought out this whole steaming pile of putrid prose has been all along. Please, save yourself while you still can. Throw this book out before you read it. Better yet, burn it to save other from the tedious and reality distorting task of reading through to the end.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Denise

    'Critical Error' was an interesting read. The premise was very thrilling. The only thing I didn't like was that I was confused quite a bit. There was a lot going on during the story. I don't know if it was just me and my frame of mind while reading, or if other people had the same thing happen. Over all, the story kept me glued to the pages. The characters were a great mix of personalities. Not a bad read to add to your tbr list.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Clifton Brown

    Politics and Terrorism A glimpse of what men will do for power and money, while also showing how far countries will go to destroy their enemies and also how far they will go to protect their people. A lot of characters to follow in this book and so many alphabet agencies that it became hard to remember them all. Filled with plenty of action and twists.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    I gave up on this one about 20% of the way through. The story line isn't terrible but there are too many grammatical errors for me to enjoy this book.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Bernie

    Critical Error is a fast-paced thriller written by author Murray McDonald.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Marilyn Buehler

    Follow up to American Justice, with most of the same characters, plot deepens, so good, couldn't put it down. Even though it is fiction, it makes one wonder!!!!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Alan Marston

    Summary (Amazon) When top CIA operative Sam Baker rescues a kidnapped CNN reporter and her cameraman from the hands of Palestinian terrorists, he uncovers a plan to devastate Israel. Unable to stop the attack in time, Israel is rocked to the core as over 4,000 of its youngest and most vulnerable citizens are slaughtered. Four years later, retired and enjoying a new life, his own family is slaughtered in a bungled attempt on his life. Dealing with his would-be killers, Sam sends a warning to his br Summary (Amazon) When top CIA operative Sam Baker rescues a kidnapped CNN reporter and her cameraman from the hands of Palestinian terrorists, he uncovers a plan to devastate Israel. Unable to stop the attack in time, Israel is rocked to the core as over 4,000 of its youngest and most vulnerable citizens are slaughtered. Four years later, retired and enjoying a new life, his own family is slaughtered in a bungled attempt on his life. Dealing with his would-be killers, Sam sends a warning to his brother, Senator Charles Baker, a presidential front-runner, that he too is about to be assassinated. Sam's hunch is right and thanks to the quick actions of a Secret Service agent, the Senator is saved. Sam is left with no choice but to leave his new life and revisit a life he had left far behind. After the devastating attack on its children, Israel's leaders unleash an old and top secret plan in retaliation - 'Project Ararat'. Rebecca Cohen, mother of one of the slaughtered six-year-olds and ex-Mossad assassin begs to be allowed to help in whatever way she can. With vengeance driving her on, Rebecca uncovers an even greater risk to her country and to America. The terrorists have managed to secure five nuclear weapons and plan to strike Israel and America. Review. This page-turner of a book revolves around two people, Sam Baker and Rebecca Cohen, who have both suffered appalling losses in their lives. Sam has taken himself away to lead a new life, whilst Rebecca has committed herself to avenging her son. Sam’s loss, much more recent, drives him to take action against those who would try to eliminate him. The book is quite complex in the beginning, but once I had the many characters sorted out in my mind, it became compulsive reading. There is very little let up in the action of the book, nor in the connivance of different parties involved who are all playing for very high stakes. At times it is very difficult to tell who can be trusted or who means what they actually say. The greed for power shown by a number of US politicians is quite amazing, vying for the Vice Presidency and subsequently the Presidency is quite amazing. The most amazing part to me, however, is the development of the New Israel – the solution is stunning in its simplicity, but very complex in its achievement, and is so unlikely – but, it works in dealing with the situation, and the author is to be congratulated in coming up with it! It is a high octane novel that means that I will be returning to this author in the future.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Steven Konkoly

    I had read MacDonald’s two previous offerings back to back, thoroughly enjoying them, and have eagerly awaited the opportunity to direct my attention to his third, and apparently most critically acclaimed and controversial novel. The inexcusably long hiatus on my part was well rewarded. MacDonald is one of few authors in this genre that can write an internationally sweeping, plot driven technothriller, without burying the reader in details, while at the same time fully satisfying technical reade I had read MacDonald’s two previous offerings back to back, thoroughly enjoying them, and have eagerly awaited the opportunity to direct my attention to his third, and apparently most critically acclaimed and controversial novel. The inexcusably long hiatus on my part was well rewarded. MacDonald is one of few authors in this genre that can write an internationally sweeping, plot driven technothriller, without burying the reader in details, while at the same time fully satisfying technical readers like myself. In Critical Error, MacDonald goes above and beyond his previous efforts to keep the reader unseated. I continuously anticipating the next twist or turn, which catapulted the plot forward at a blistering pace. The villains and puppet masters are diabolical, yet not cartoonish. The protagonists are complex, flawed and not unstoppable…though they certainly don’t go down without an incredible fight. The action is believable and gritty, with an emphasis on “economy of violence.” Double crosses and backstabbing are the order of the day, and you’ll never know exactly whom you can trust among his cast of characters. All of these aspects combine to create a richly entertaining read. Reviewers have criticized the greater plot driving much of the novel’s action, and while it is undeniably ambitious, MacDonald pulled it off with what I considered to be a minimum suspension of belief. After all, this is technothriller fiction, and the author tackled a sensitive topic with particular skill and research-based logic. The culmination of scenes at the end of the novel is brilliant, and well worth the price of admission in the case of Critical Error. MacDonald has a keen talent for pulling everything together in end, leaving no stones unturned. Overall, this is the author’s strongest novel to date. I look forward to his next offering, which I can only hope will be released soon.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Charles

    I was given the opportunity to read and review this book. I've read another book by Murray McDonald and this one sounded interesting, so I decided to give it a shot. I'll start by saying that this genre of writing is not my normal reading, so I focused on enjoying the story rather than trying to get bogged down in the details. This said, I did enjoy the book very much. The plot was intersting and the storyline has plenty of action to keep the plot moving forward. The first 50 pages or so were fu I was given the opportunity to read and review this book. I've read another book by Murray McDonald and this one sounded interesting, so I decided to give it a shot. I'll start by saying that this genre of writing is not my normal reading, so I focused on enjoying the story rather than trying to get bogged down in the details. This said, I did enjoy the book very much. The plot was intersting and the storyline has plenty of action to keep the plot moving forward. The first 50 pages or so were full of information and characters, so it was a little difficult to keep up with what was happening and who was who. However, once the story begins focusing on the main characters, my interest was peaked to find out what happens. Throughout the story, new characters are introduced simply to introduce information we wouldn't have otherwise; these characters were not around long and made following the story a little confusing at times. I also wish that we had more interaction with Agent Clarke. I really liked her character. Perhaps we will see her again in the future with her own book. Overall, I really liked the story and adventure, despite the many characters interjected throughout. If you enjoy books regarding politics and the threat of a nation's destruction, this is a good book to sit down with. I'll definately be on the lookout for Murray McDonald's next story.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Lindsay

    A plot that is not in any remote way believable, copious grammatical errors, and too many cliches to count. I don't know anything about this author, but by his use (and misuse) of cliche after cliche, I could only assume he is not a natural American English speaker. I won't even give you examples. Just take a look at the sample or use the peek inside feature on Amazon, and you'll see what I mean. The lack of editing was not quite enough to make me quit reading - I'm stubborn like that - but it di A plot that is not in any remote way believable, copious grammatical errors, and too many cliches to count. I don't know anything about this author, but by his use (and misuse) of cliche after cliche, I could only assume he is not a natural American English speaker. I won't even give you examples. Just take a look at the sample or use the peek inside feature on Amazon, and you'll see what I mean. The lack of editing was not quite enough to make me quit reading - I'm stubborn like that - but it did make me want to throw my kindle across the room in frustration. Incorrect and unexplained shortened versions of words (e.g. speedo, which I could only assume meant speedometer from the context?), wrongly capitalized words (Carrier, as in a type of ship), dizzying spells of head hopping - you name a writing error, you can find it in this book.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Apurva Jain

    UNBELIEVABLE I have read other books by Murray McDonald with very believable plots. Thus I started this one with high hopes and as I read through the book, I wasn't disappointed. The characters are well defined. Sam and Rebecca are outstanding. Ben is a mystery. The story moves along at a fast pace which doesnt let the narrative get boring. Except when I reached the end. The (believed to be) main characters end up being sidelined. The ending was a let down and was too preposterous to believe. Read UNBELIEVABLE I have read other books by Murray McDonald with very believable plots. Thus I started this one with high hopes and as I read through the book, I wasn't disappointed. The characters are well defined. Sam and Rebecca are outstanding. Ben is a mystery. The story moves along at a fast pace which doesnt let the narrative get boring. Except when I reached the end. The (believed to be) main characters end up being sidelined. The ending was a let down and was too preposterous to believe. Read the book as purely fiction - as something that cannot possibly happen in the real world.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Charles Robinson

    Critical Error Okay, I did find some parts of the story far fetched but it really did keep me interested and entertained regardless. The important characters were well developed and the story was truly fast paced. . I believed the author did a good job going out of the norm with political thrillers so you must have a good imagination in order to get off 1st base with it. Looking forward to more.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Rohit Kilpadi

    The story is definitely action-packed. More so than most thrillers, however, it is a bit too far fetched and completely void of any connection to reality. Lots of twists and turns, but all basically coming out in favor of the protagonist. Every. Single. Time! That coupled with a fatal lack of understanding of politics in the Middle East, as well as the US turns a potentially good story into something just not worth reading. The flat characters also do not garner any sympathy. Terrible waste ..

  24. 5 out of 5

    Beth

    A political/suspense novel, the characters range from upper level politicians to spy masters all joined together in a major plot to change the way of the world. Lots of Arab/Jew conflict, good guys being targeted for murder because they are in the way of the plot, a very large surprise ending. I liked most of the book, the characters were real and the action not totally over the top. The surprise at the end was more than a bit unbelievable.

  25. 5 out of 5

    John Falcone

    Another wonderful masterpiece written by this up and coming author. Just like his other books, Mcdonald writes them so they are quite hard to put down. I have recently breezed through two of his books, and now this one. Full of action, an incredible plot, and interesting characters, ths author leaves you desperate for more.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Jack A. Linn

    It Is What It Is It Is What It Is It's not literature. It's not fact-based fiction. It's entertainment pure and simple. An interesting story . . . good guys and bad guys . . . some suspense and lots of action. It's just what the author promised . . . and exactly what he delivered.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Arthur

    Critical Error (by Murray McDonald) Get ready for thrills and chills, before you get to Chapter 3, you'll have to be able to make sure you are following the action. Twists and turns that will leave you wondering if what you've read is "possible and probable." Thanks for letting me know how much the international world of politics can be convoluted. Great read.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Joe Arieno

    While the main characters were likable, there were too many sub characters to keep track of without a scorecard which made the story too long and drawn out. The same story could have been told without all the tedious detail. I had to keep on rereading sections to understand the plot. Not my favorite book

  29. 5 out of 5

    Rex Fuller

    Good read. I disagree with the author on political issues, which may bias my assessment. The author kindly contacted me and convinced me the political views were used for a literary purpose, which prompted me to change my assessment.

  30. 5 out of 5

    nancy m drexler

    DYN-O-MITE!!! loved the book! couldn't put it down. BUT... just thinking about the scenario doesn't seem that unlikely with what's going on with our government. SCARY!!!! isn't it....

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