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Black 13 is the brilliant first novel in the Scott Pearce series from Adam Hamdy. In this addictive and fast-paced thriller, ex-MI6 officer Pearce is about to show us that in a world where there is no loyalty to the nation state, it's time to burn the espionage rule book. An exiled agent. A growing threat. A clandestine war. The world is changing beyond recognition. Radical e Black 13 is the brilliant first novel in the Scott Pearce series from Adam Hamdy. In this addictive and fast-paced thriller, ex-MI6 officer Pearce is about to show us that in a world where there is no loyalty to the nation state, it's time to burn the espionage rule book. An exiled agent. A growing threat. A clandestine war. The world is changing beyond recognition. Radical extremists are rising and seek to enforce their ideology globally. Governments, the military and intelligence agencies are being outmanoeuvred at every step. Borders are breaking down. Those in power are puppets. The old rules are obsolete. To fight this war a new doctrine is needed. In a world where nothing is at it seems, where trust is gone, one man will make the difference. Meet Ex-MI6 agent and man in exile, Scott Pearce. It's time to burn the espionage rule book. Watch Pearce light the fire.


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Black 13 is the brilliant first novel in the Scott Pearce series from Adam Hamdy. In this addictive and fast-paced thriller, ex-MI6 officer Pearce is about to show us that in a world where there is no loyalty to the nation state, it's time to burn the espionage rule book. An exiled agent. A growing threat. A clandestine war. The world is changing beyond recognition. Radical e Black 13 is the brilliant first novel in the Scott Pearce series from Adam Hamdy. In this addictive and fast-paced thriller, ex-MI6 officer Pearce is about to show us that in a world where there is no loyalty to the nation state, it's time to burn the espionage rule book. An exiled agent. A growing threat. A clandestine war. The world is changing beyond recognition. Radical extremists are rising and seek to enforce their ideology globally. Governments, the military and intelligence agencies are being outmanoeuvred at every step. Borders are breaking down. Those in power are puppets. The old rules are obsolete. To fight this war a new doctrine is needed. In a world where nothing is at it seems, where trust is gone, one man will make the difference. Meet Ex-MI6 agent and man in exile, Scott Pearce. It's time to burn the espionage rule book. Watch Pearce light the fire.

30 review for Black 13

  1. 5 out of 5

    Maureen

    *4.5 STARS * Scott Pearce is reminiscent of your all action, comic book super hero, and oh boy, it makes for a truly gripping, action packed start to this new series! Ex MI6 agent Pearce, took the blame for an operation that went wrong in Islamabad, an operation that led to his dismissal. We meet him working on his own undercover, trying to discover what went wrong and why. His cover is blown when lawyer Melody Gold travels half way round the world at the request of a client, inviting Pearce to he *4.5 STARS * Scott Pearce is reminiscent of your all action, comic book super hero, and oh boy, it makes for a truly gripping, action packed start to this new series! Ex MI6 agent Pearce, took the blame for an operation that went wrong in Islamabad, an operation that led to his dismissal. We meet him working on his own undercover, trying to discover what went wrong and why. His cover is blown when lawyer Melody Gold travels half way round the world at the request of a client, inviting Pearce to help infiltrate the private bank Bayard Madison. The previous investigator Nathan Foster, (a former colleague of Pearce’s) was murdered for his efforts. Gold seems to know way too much about Pearce, but more worryingly she’s led the bad guys right to his door. It ends up with the pair being pursued by some very vicious individuals, and quite honestly, the action is non stop from there on in! Wow! What an intense start to a new series. It was well written, the characters are great, and it was totally addictive! Should you choose to read Black 13, hold on to your hats, because you’re in for a very bumpy ride! * Thank you to Netgalley and Pan Macmillan for my ARC. I have given an honest unbiased review in exchange *

  2. 5 out of 5

    Paromjit

    Adam Hamdy writes a riveting fast paced thriller that really grew on me the more I read, featuring ex-military, ex-spook, mixed race Scott Pearce, a terrific all action central protagonist. Hamdy focuses on how our contemporary world has changed, the power of social media and how it can be manipulated by unseen forces seeking to sow the seeds of national division, strife and conflict with the goal of ensuring specific political outcomes. This underpins this thriller which begins with the murder Adam Hamdy writes a riveting fast paced thriller that really grew on me the more I read, featuring ex-military, ex-spook, mixed race Scott Pearce, a terrific all action central protagonist. Hamdy focuses on how our contemporary world has changed, the power of social media and how it can be manipulated by unseen forces seeking to sow the seeds of national division, strife and conflict with the goal of ensuring specific political outcomes. This underpins this thriller which begins with the murder of PI Nathan Foster, hired by lawyers from the law firm of Denton Fraser, instructed by a shadowy client to look into the private bank, Bayard Madison, run by an aristocrat Viscount. The lawyer Melody Gold travels half way across the world to convince Scott to continue the investigation, which Scott agrees to because Foster is an old military mate of his, but first the pair have to survive an all out assault by forces that have followed Melody. The dangers does not subside as they make a covert arrival back home to Britain. Scott brings in another military friend, the black Wayne Nelson, to act as a bodyguard to Melody, whilst he tries to discover what happened to Nathan and what he knew that necessitated his death. Leads are few, but there is a cover up as the official verdict is that Nathan committed suicide. Feeling that his team needs bolstering, he brings in The Syrian, the disabled and traumatised Leila Nahum, a whizz when it comes to the online world. As Scott and his team run their operation according to conventional practices learnt in the past from the intelligence community, they find themselves having to rip up the old rule book, and having to fight fire with fire, taking the fight to their foes. In a narrative that takes in co-ordinated geopolitical machinations, the involvement of undercover French agents, a Ukrainian mobster, sex rings and the far right, Scott tries to get to the truth of why Nathan had to die and simultaneously foil a terror plot of unimaginable proportions. Hamdy writes an intelligent thriller that portrays many of our contemporary world issues and fears, and gives us plotting and nightmare storylines that, sadly, really do not feel all that far fetched. It took me a little while to become engaged with the novel, but once I did, I was completely hooked, right up to the very last page. My favourite character was Leila, a woman with a heartbreaking backstory, traumas that continue to plague her, but which contribute to the strong woman she has become as she ruthlessly exploits those who underestimate her. This was a wonderful thriller that I really enjoyed, and it looks as if it is the first in a series, I cannot wait to read the follow up and reaquaint myself with Scott and his team. Many thanks to Pan Macmillan for an ARC.

  3. 5 out of 5

    The Cats’ Mother

    Update 09 Feb: can anyone tell me why Amazon would’ve refused to publish this review? I’m a bit gobsmacked - no swearing, nothing promotional, nothing defamatory... I don’t see any point resubmitting it until I know what I’ve done wrong!! 😫 This will be my 200th review for NetGalley, so I'm glad it can be an unreservedly positive one! The first in a series about disgraced former MI6 agent Scott Pearce, this was a fast-paced exciting action/spy thriller introducing a hero who resembles a British M Update 09 Feb: can anyone tell me why Amazon would’ve refused to publish this review? I’m a bit gobsmacked - no swearing, nothing promotional, nothing defamatory... I don’t see any point resubmitting it until I know what I’ve done wrong!! 😫 This will be my 200th review for NetGalley, so I'm glad it can be an unreservedly positive one! The first in a series about disgraced former MI6 agent Scott Pearce, this was a fast-paced exciting action/spy thriller introducing a hero who resembles a British Mitch Rapp (that's a very good thing!) Scott Pearce is on an obsessive one-man mission to track down the terrorists whose attack he thwarted in Islamabad, but political wrangling in the aftermath ended his career so he's carrying on alone. In Thailand posing as a climbing guide, he is tracked down by a Melody Gold, young lawyer who offers him a job finding the people who killed his friend. Realising she has been followed by sinister figures intent on killing them both, and that his cover is now blown, Pearce escorts her back to Britain and enlists the help of his friends to protect Melody and expose a dark conspiracy with roots in the far right extremist movement. The author has a background as a screenwriter, and it shows in his storytelling - I could vividly picture every scene and think this would make an excellent TV series. Scott is an appealing hero - super tough but caring, not too damaged - unlike his friend Leila, a fantastic character, who has risen above the horrors of her past to become a powerful ally on Scott's mission. There were some other interesting side characters who will hopefully be developed further in future books, and hopefully we'll learn more about Scott's past missions. The plot was exciting if unoriginal, and the baddies rather stereotypically evil, but the set-up was scarily convincing and while Scott's escapades seemed far-fetched, the nefarious plot was depressingly believable. In his afterword, the author describes his rationale for telling his story this way, and the extensive research he did. I like political thrillers and this felt very Now. The action shifts between various UK locations, which made a nice change as most of the books I've read in this genre have been American. It's told in traditional close third person past narration, which was a relief. It's well written and the dialogue was just right. There is quite a lot of violence but it's not gratuitous, and no animals are harmed. I liked the way the story wrapped up satisfactorily but led us on to the next one, which I look forward to reading in due course. 4.5 stars. My thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC which allowed me to give an honest review, and apologies that it's a little late. Black 13 is available now, but looks like it's still available to request (until 29.02.20) so grab it now if you're a fan of 24, Mr Rapp, or Mick Herron's Slow Horses series.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    This is an exciting, fast paced and modern thriller. P I Nathan Foster is hired by a law firm to investigate a private bank, on behalf of a wealthy client. When he is killed, lawyer Melody Gold is sent to find ex-M16 agent, Scott Pearce. Pearce once knew Foster and, with Gold revealing the cover he has worked so hard to maintain, he returns to the UK with her, to help investigate. From the first page, the reader is thrown right into the action. However, Pearce is a man who is well aware of what This is an exciting, fast paced and modern thriller. P I Nathan Foster is hired by a law firm to investigate a private bank, on behalf of a wealthy client. When he is killed, lawyer Melody Gold is sent to find ex-M16 agent, Scott Pearce. Pearce once knew Foster and, with Gold revealing the cover he has worked so hard to maintain, he returns to the UK with her, to help investigate. From the first page, the reader is thrown right into the action. However, Pearce is a man who is well aware of what it takes to stay alive. He involves some old friends, including the mountainous Wayne Nelson and Syrian tech specialist, Leila Nahum, to help him. Meanwhile, Melody finds herself totally out of her depth and in danger, with no idea of what Foster discovered, or for whom… If you like exciting thrillers, with more depth, then you will enjoy this. It starts running and keeps going until the last page. With some wonderfully, stereotypical baddies, alongside the modern storyline, this combines action and characters to care about. All of them have their demons, but I found Leila the most intriguing and look forward to reading more about Scott Pearce and his team in future reads. I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, for review.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Kate

    Absolutely excellent. Scott Pearce and Leila Nahum are a formidable team and one that I'm looking forward to following in many more books to come. Leila, in particular, is extraordinary. Adam Hamdy certainly knows how to tell a good story and this thriller is tense, action-packed, disturbing and at times shocking. Fabulous! Review to follow shortly on For Winter Nights.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Bookoholic.me

    Black 13 is a first novel in the Scott Pearce series. An ex-M16 agent gets involved in dangerous game which he must play whether he likes it or not. Our world is full of manipulation, extreme movements and far-left/far-right political parties are getting into power. The hate spreads easily. During the research of the book, the author did a small social media experiment by himself and the results were terrifying. The author's note at the end of the book is probably the best and the most important Black 13 is a first novel in the Scott Pearce series. An ex-M16 agent gets involved in dangerous game which he must play whether he likes it or not. Our world is full of manipulation, extreme movements and far-left/far-right political parties are getting into power. The hate spreads easily. During the research of the book, the author did a small social media experiment by himself and the results were terrifying. The author's note at the end of the book is probably the best and the most important one I've ever read. The story is a fast-pace, full of action and unusual twists. It shows how easily powerful people can manipulate us and be in charge of many illegal activities, like sex slavery or terrorism. I love Leila's character, who is a computer and engineering genius (living with her own trauma and PTSD), and a crucial member of the team. A wonderful woman, her fight with her own demons makes her stronger and more determined to help others. When you start Black 13 it's hard to put the book down. I can't wait for the 2nd part because the epilogue was a perfect introduction to the new story. I'd love to see the story on a big screen, as it'd be perfect for a full-length action movie.

  7. 4 out of 5

    RG

    Fast paced and heavy action. I went in expecting more after so many good reviews. Its fun but cheesy. A few roll the eye moments both with action scenes and dialogue. Weirdly i preferred Leila as the main character and wasnt overly fond of Peace. I guess this will be a series at some point and does has super potential. Thr back Story of some of the characters espcially dealing with PTSD is superbly written.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Melisende

    Pre-review: I haven't even finished this - and HOLY CRAP ... what a roller-coaster ride this is already! One of the best action thrillers I have read in a long while and I'm only half way through! Well, now I have finished it, and what can I say but what a read! My thoughts above, when only halfway through, are still applicable. The characters, the story, the descriptiveness, the action sequences (and there are plenty of those) - I felt every heartbeat, sat there breathless, winced at every punch. Pre-review: I haven't even finished this - and HOLY CRAP ... what a roller-coaster ride this is already! One of the best action thrillers I have read in a long while and I'm only half way through! Well, now I have finished it, and what can I say but what a read! My thoughts above, when only halfway through, are still applicable. The characters, the story, the descriptiveness, the action sequences (and there are plenty of those) - I felt every heartbeat, sat there breathless, winced at every punch. We already know this is going to be a series so no spoiler alert there - but for a while you wonder .... is this man made of kevlar ... by the end of it, I can hear the words ... "we can rebuild him" ... Now for a spoiler alert: this is no fairy tale; there is violence and a lot of it; so if you are easily offended, turn away now. If you want one of the best thrillers around, read on!

  9. 4 out of 5

    Luisa

    Black 13 Wow! I judged this book by its front cover - I didn’t even read the synopsis, and I wasn’t let down. The cover was true in its luring me into an exquisite piece of literature. Adam Hamdy has produced a masterpiece that was addictive from Page 1 of the Prologue. I read this book in record time; faster than any other. The story of Pearce and his colleagues is well written, and the action described in perfect detail so I could literally see every corner of each scene. The content is confronti Black 13 Wow! I judged this book by its front cover - I didn’t even read the synopsis, and I wasn’t let down. The cover was true in its luring me into an exquisite piece of literature. Adam Hamdy has produced a masterpiece that was addictive from Page 1 of the Prologue. I read this book in record time; faster than any other. The story of Pearce and his colleagues is well written, and the action described in perfect detail so I could literally see every corner of each scene. The content is confronting and may upset some readers, but it’s reality and what takes place around the globe more often than we’d like to acknowledge. There are many hero characters for different reasons. A core team of ex-military personnel is infiltrating a criminal gang that infects society all the way to the top. The interwoven plots lead the reader through intricate webs of deception. Please someone in a production house make this novel into a movie …. It’s begging to be a box office hit. Thank you to @beautyandlacemag and @panmacmillan for the opportunity to read and to review ‘Black 13’ by Adam Hamdy. I very much look forward to my next book.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Bodo Pfündl

    The perfect tale of espionage for our troubled times Adam Hamdy has created something truly unique with BLACK 13 - A story about asymmetric warfare, fanatism and the evolution of evil and espionage alike. Scott Pearce makes for a compelling protagonist, differing from the stereotypical PTSD heroes, who have to claw their way back to humanity. He rather is a driven man with a mission, who finds himself unable to quit. I also enjoyed how the author shrouded parts of his past in mystery and didn’t r The perfect tale of espionage for our troubled times Adam Hamdy has created something truly unique with BLACK 13 - A story about asymmetric warfare, fanatism and the evolution of evil and espionage alike. Scott Pearce makes for a compelling protagonist, differing from the stereotypical PTSD heroes, who have to claw their way back to humanity. He rather is a driven man with a mission, who finds himself unable to quit. I also enjoyed how the author shrouded parts of his past in mystery and didn’t reveal his whole backstory at once. Leila Nahum on the other hand is such a special character that I won’t spoil her here. The other characters and their motivations are fleshed out in great detail as well, including the villains. The action is mesmerizing and the pacing just perfect, with the author throwing in a new twist every time you think you are one step ahead of the game. The ending bodes well for the next entry into the series and I couldn’t be more excited!

  11. 5 out of 5

    PETER ODUKWE

    This is a very very good book. Its underlying premises are very relevant to our daily lives. I am very much looking forward to what comes next. I can't recommend it highly enough.. The authors notes at the end are quite chilling. Highly recommended.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jackie Law

    Black 13, by Adam Hamdy, is the first in a proposed new series from the author of the high octane Pendulum trilogy. It introduces the reader to Scott Pearce, a former operative with MI6 who was driven out of the service when he refused to stand down after an horrific engagement in Islamabad. He believes the perpetrators are still at large and seeks some form of retribution. Scott is a formidable individual whose skills, strengths and lack of personal ties allow him to make clear decisions that m Black 13, by Adam Hamdy, is the first in a proposed new series from the author of the high octane Pendulum trilogy. It introduces the reader to Scott Pearce, a former operative with MI6 who was driven out of the service when he refused to stand down after an horrific engagement in Islamabad. He believes the perpetrators are still at large and seeks some form of retribution. Scott is a formidable individual whose skills, strengths and lack of personal ties allow him to make clear decisions that may put him in mortal danger but for what he believes is the greater good. He is loyal to the former colleagues who have remained loyal to him. The story opens with the murder of one of these colleagues, Nathan Foster. Like Scott, Nathan is no longer working for a government agency but is struggling to get by as a civilian. When a young lawyer, Melody Gold, recruits him on behalf of a shadowy client to investigate goings on at a bank, Nathan is drawn to the chance of some danger and glory. He has grown bored with his mundane work as a private investigator for suspicious wives or employers. However, what he discovers at the bank terrifies him and ultimately leads to his demise. The action then moves to a beautiful beach location in Thailand where Scott is working under an assumed identity as a climbing guide and tutor while seeking gunrunners he believes are connected to what happened in Islamabad. He is appalled when Melody turns up to recruit him in place of Nathan as only three people in the world should have known Scott’s location. With his cover compromised and powerful enemies on his tail he returns to England. On confirming the details of what happened to Nathan he plots revenge. Scott asks another of his trusted former colleagues, Wayne Nelson, to act as bodyguard for Melody who is now also in danger. He contacts Leila Nahum, a disabled Syrian refugee and accomplished IT expert with an horrific personal history, whose life Scott saved during an MI6 operation. This small team works to find out who Nathan’s client was and who was behind his killing. What they uncover goes to the heart of the British establishment and beyond, into global networks of politics and wealth. This is a slick, tense and fast paced thriller. Beneath the vividly described action – the fights, car chases and imaginative means of escape – the author effortlessly slips in thought-provoking social commentary. Arguments put forward can be made to sound reasonable to the disaffected who see their concerns being ignored by those in authority. The narrative explores how ordinary people can be radicalised and how some will go on to commit indefensible atrocities. It is a warning, a clarion call, for what could be happening in Britain today. The varied and well drawn characters add to the enjoyment of what is an intense and compelling story. It offers escapism but is inventive enough to carry the reader through the many battles and complex conspiracies. Explication never detracts from the adrenaline fuelled escapades. Recommended for those who enjoy well written and electrifying action thrillers.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Kath

    I am going to ignore the fact that Scott Pearce spends the majority of this book channelling Captain Scarlet insofar as he is pretty much indestructible whatever situation he finds himself in. Not a spoiler, this is the start of a series so we pretty much know from the off that he probably won't die! We first meet him when he is in action investigating on his own when he is interrupted in this by someone who wants, no needs, his help. This marks the first "fleeing for his life" action sequence w I am going to ignore the fact that Scott Pearce spends the majority of this book channelling Captain Scarlet insofar as he is pretty much indestructible whatever situation he finds himself in. Not a spoiler, this is the start of a series so we pretty much know from the off that he probably won't die! We first meet him when he is in action investigating on his own when he is interrupted in this by someone who wants, no needs, his help. This marks the first "fleeing for his life" action sequence which pretty much sets the tone for the rest of what follows. An investigator has been murdered, ruled suicide despite evidence that proves otherwise. Evidence that the powers that be have chosen to ignore. But why? And who is pulling the chains? What did the investigator discover that needs to be kept quiet... at all costs? This is a scary book as it highlights the ease that certain factions find to manipulate things for their own ends. I can't, and won't, expand on this as to do so might contain spoilers and the blurb gives little away. Suffice to say that there was so much that appeared to be wholly credible contained within the pages of this book, especially with what the author says at the end with regard to a social experiment he himself carried out, well... dark times indeed... Sorry for being cryptic but you will get what I mean when you read it for yourself. Characterisation was excellent. Each one was well crafted - main and bit part players alike - and all played their parts with aplomb. I especially loved Leila and her courage through all the adversity that life has already thrown her way before we even meet her and see what happened next! Everything else a good action thriller should have, this book has in spades. How Pearce is still alive beggars belief but he is a master of the skin-of-his-teeth, seat-of-his-pants escape. Good thing too as he does put himself in harm's way more than the average super hero. The action is complemented by some really nifty techno support, mostly from Leila and I especially enjoyed this side of things. The whole thing does read at tad like it has the small (or even big) screen in mind. I for one would love to see this happen. But for now, I will be sitting back and hotly anticipating the next in series, especially given the (not a cliffhanger, don't worry) epilogue... the game has only just begun... My thanks go to the Publisher and Netgalley for the chance to read this book.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Jem

    Thank you to @macmillanaus for sending me a copy for review. I absolutely loved this book! I really enjoy a good crime thriller and this was definitely one. It reminded my of the Jason Bourne movies and I loved it. I was hooked from the start and I was up late finishing it off, once you get to part 2 there is no putting it down. It was fast paced from the start and lots of action happening, but not too much that you get overwhelmed. The world of spies was explained well and I didn't feel as if I Thank you to @macmillanaus for sending me a copy for review. I absolutely loved this book! I really enjoy a good crime thriller and this was definitely one. It reminded my of the Jason Bourne movies and I loved it. I was hooked from the start and I was up late finishing it off, once you get to part 2 there is no putting it down. It was fast paced from the start and lots of action happening, but not too much that you get overwhelmed. The world of spies was explained well and I didn't feel as if I was missing information or not knowing what was going on. . I loved the characters and had many emotions when different things happened to them. As the story progresses we learn more about what makes them who they are and why they are doing what they are doing. The suspense and intrigue of the story was brilliant and I found myself wanting to immediately know more and what was going to happen next. . Overall a brilliant read that I will definitely be recommending and can't wait to read more about Scott Pearce 😊

  15. 5 out of 5

    Ryan Hillis

    This was more of banking thriller.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Susan Hampson

    What a cracking read this is! The prologue sets the scene and pace and the intensity never goes away throughout the book. The death of Nathan Foster by two thugs that I cannot imagine were ever human was quite sickening but then you realise that he had been a man that had been trained as an MI6 agent and who had served in some of the worst fighting campaigns, then you shudder. When Scott Perce’s 2-year uncover alias as a climbing guide is broken by Melody Gold, a lawyer, things do go south rather What a cracking read this is! The prologue sets the scene and pace and the intensity never goes away throughout the book. The death of Nathan Foster by two thugs that I cannot imagine were ever human was quite sickening but then you realise that he had been a man that had been trained as an MI6 agent and who had served in some of the worst fighting campaigns, then you shudder. When Scott Perce’s 2-year uncover alias as a climbing guide is broken by Melody Gold, a lawyer, things do go south rather quickly. After making a spectacular escape with Melody he has little choice other than listening to what she has to say. He knew he already wanted to take out the people that had killed his former MI6 agent buddy. This is just one action-packed chapter after another, each quite very distinctive, each high octane reading. Brilliant vivid descriptions of places and situations bring it all to life like a cinema epic movie. The plot has a real modern feel and the characters solid. A stop you in your tracks could this happen sort of read and yes scarily one day it could. This is going to be a solid series to keep up with if this book is anything to go by. Just superb! I wish to thank the publisher and NetGalley for an e-copy of this book which I reviewed honestly.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jude Wright

    Having read Adam Hamdys Pendulum Trilogy which I rated highly, i wondered how he could better those books. I needn’t have worried! Black 13 is an intelligent and highly addictive read, delving into current affairs and politics, with our new hero Scott Pearce. Masterful writing means you are always on the edge of your seat and actually feel like you’re on the ride with the characters in the underbelly of Society and the world of spies and espionage! Each character has a good background story, and t Having read Adam Hamdys Pendulum Trilogy which I rated highly, i wondered how he could better those books. I needn’t have worried! Black 13 is an intelligent and highly addictive read, delving into current affairs and politics, with our new hero Scott Pearce. Masterful writing means you are always on the edge of your seat and actually feel like you’re on the ride with the characters in the underbelly of Society and the world of spies and espionage! Each character has a good background story, and they are all easy to like....the research into this book took over 2 years, and I can see why! I’m certainly not going to give anything away but I urge you to buy Black 13 and read it, you won’t be disappointed.... from the first chapter it grabs you by the balls and doesn’t let you go until the last page, and only then to make you wish you could read the sequel immediately! I’ve always been a reader of crime novels, but I have now found a new genre Thrillers, and a new hero in Scott Pearce and cannot wait for the next breathtaking round from Mr Hamdys pen. A thriller that’s begging to be made into a movie, if you read one book this year, make it Black 13!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Mike Sumner

    So many five star reviews for Black 13, but for me I felt like I was on the outside looking in. I could not get totally immersed in the plot built around a world of extremism, radicalisation and extreme violence. The survival of the protagonist Scott Pierce was at times hard to swallow, given what occurred. A lengthy read with plenty of action, at times confusing. Other reviewers clearly enjoyed Black 13 more than me...

  19. 5 out of 5

    James

    As someone who has an enduring fascination with the far-right, Adam Hamdy’s Black 13 was a novel that I was looking forward to reading. I must stress at this point, that my fascination with the far-right doesn’t translate into approval or support, quite the reverse. But as a former current affairs television journalist I was always interested in how people bought into their poisonous ideology. I worked on many a programme that looked at the far-right and spent many an hour studying them. But the As someone who has an enduring fascination with the far-right, Adam Hamdy’s Black 13 was a novel that I was looking forward to reading. I must stress at this point, that my fascination with the far-right doesn’t translate into approval or support, quite the reverse. But as a former current affairs television journalist I was always interested in how people bought into their poisonous ideology. I worked on many a programme that looked at the far-right and spent many an hour studying them. But the best way to educate people is not documentaries or non-fiction, important as these mediums are, but to incorporate such research into popular entertainment. And that’s exactly what Adam Hamdy has done with Black 13. Scott Pearce is an ex-MI6 officer, and former SAS man, who’s been exiled by the spy agency. After single-handily foiling a major terror attack in Pakistan, Pearce was convinced there was a wider conspiracy and despite being ordered not to, continued to investigate. Dismissed as a crank and conspiracy theorist, he was forced out and now continues his investigation off-the-grid while working as a climbing instructor. When a lawyer turns up in Thailand where he’s working with footage of a former colleague lying dead on a London street with two thugs standing over him, Pearce is dragged into a major far-right conspiracy that threatens bloodshed the likes of which the UK has rarely seen. Black 13 is first and foremost a high-octane and gripping spy thriller, in the genre of Jason Bourne. The action is well portrayed, and it is an exciting and page-turning read. This is a book that has film or tv-series adaptation written all over it. But while it can be enjoyed simply on that level, there is a bit more depth to the novel than that. For a start, the author has done his research on military and espionage topics and there are a number of revealing passages that hint at some of the capabilities in use by the intelligence services. I worked in current affairs television for almost twenty years and in that time I made a number of contacts of my own. There were points in the book where I read things that I know aren’t widely disseminated. More important is the author’s use of the far-right as the plank of the novel’s plot. Far-right violence is the single fastest growing threat, and while still dwarfed by that of Islamist terror, it’s quickly catching up. It’s high time that popular entertainment takes note of this, as this is how issues are disseminated most widely. While as a former current affairs journalist I have nothing but respect and appreciation for serious journalism and non-fiction, I’m under no illusions that it’s through popular entertainment – computer games, Hollywood movies, music, genre fiction – that awareness is raised most. Again, the author’s clearly done his research and has familiarised himself with the far-right. This leads me to my only criticism of the novel, and it’s a small one. The author is at pains at points in the narrative to suggest that it is at the extremes of politics where danger lies, and seems to suggest that the far-left is as dangerous as the far-right. While this is undoubtedly true in the broader, historical sense (few would deny that Stalin was as much of a monster as Hitler) it is simply not true in the current climate in which the book is set. The violence of such groups as Antifa is undoubtedly troubling and counter-productive, but simply pales into insignificance when compared with groups such as Combat 18 or National Action. Find me an Antifa equivalent of Anders Breivik who murdered 77 and injured over 319. Or the Christchurch perpetrator who murdered 51 and injured 40. *SPOILER WARNING* Towards the end of the novel, there are strong hints that the far-right plot has been sponsored from abroad, and I’ve seen that the author’s next novel (and sequel to Black 13) is titled Red Wolf. It’s clear where this is going – that the far-right was sponsored by Russia (or elements within) with the view to destabilising the west. As it’s well established that Putin’s Russia has indeed sponsored far-right organisations and parties throughout the west for just such a purpose, this is not far-fetched and shows once again that the author has done his research. In conclusion, Black 13 is a brilliant novel, a page-turner than can be enjoyed on the beach but which also carries an important message. This is a great read and I look forward to the next book in the series.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Sue Blanchard

    Thankyou to NetGalley, Pan McMillan Australia and the author, Adam Hamdy, for the opportunity to read a digital copy of Black 13 in exchange for an honest and unbiased opinion. Adam Hamdy has certainly delivered a rollercoaster plot that will keep you on the edge of your seat. I was hooked. The storyline was well thought out and written with well developed characters. It sucks you in and doesn't let go. Well worth a read.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Mark Pearce

    A humdinger of a page turner. Scott Pearce is a brawny protagonist who could do with showing a bit more brain when planning and reacting. A great story though the number of times he got himself into life or death situations and came through did start to stretch credulity. A good character and one I would like to read more.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Abin

    Gripping and bloody brilliant. Looking forward to more of Scott Pearce novels by Adam Hamdy. Finally the Gabriel Allon series by Daniel Silva has competition!

  23. 5 out of 5

    Alan

    Didnt work for me

  24. 4 out of 5

    Jane Blake

    Really enjoyed this, thrilling from start to finish. Found the main characters very good and believable. If there was any more books with those in I would certainly buy it. Recommend it.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Philip Isaacs

    Absolutely incredible, one of the best books I've read in a very long time! We have a new hero, and his name is Scott Pearce!

  26. 4 out of 5

    Adrian Guretti

    Pretty average. It's somewhere between an Arnold Schwarzenegger movie from the 80s and anything from Spike Lee.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Colleen Winter

    This is one of those rare books that actually delivers on everything that it says on the blurbs on the cover. This is a unique, contemporary thriller that deals with issues that are happening in our world today and brings new rules to the espionage rule book. Fast paced and compelling, I loved the intelligence Adam Hamdy brought to the topic and to the events of the book as they unfold. A great read and one that I have thought of many times since finishing it. Highly recommend it.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Lizz

    Scott Pearce is a former member of MI6, a secret intelligence service based in the United Kingdom, who is trying to live a somewhat secluded life after he blames himself for a mission gone wrong. His secluded peaceful life comes to an end when he is approached by Melody, who was sent by her boss to search for him, after his friend and fellow comrade Nathan Foster, was killed. After Melody finds Pearce and asks for his help, the story takes a drastic turn of being hunted by a crew called Black 13. Scott Pearce is a former member of MI6, a secret intelligence service based in the United Kingdom, who is trying to live a somewhat secluded life after he blames himself for a mission gone wrong. His secluded peaceful life comes to an end when he is approached by Melody, who was sent by her boss to search for him, after his friend and fellow comrade Nathan Foster, was killed. After Melody finds Pearce and asks for his help, the story takes a drastic turn of being hunted by a crew called Black 13. Pearce asks for the help of Wayne and Leila, who he has worked with previously, to find the truth and bring it all to an end. The characters were very well written, all with their own secrets and past hardships, especially in my opinion with Leila, the horrible things she has seen and had to be a part off previously, and the PTSD she suffers with now, but her stubbornness and fight she continues to have really stood out to me. Overall a well done action packed, thrilling read that will leave you on the edge of your seat until the end.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Claire at Wine Ladies Books and Reviews

    Excellent,  Face Paced Thriller. Black13 starts straight away in a shroud of mystery. It just gets better when you meet main character Scott Pearce.  This has been listed the first of Pearce novels and I can't wait for the others. Especially if anything like this one. Scott is an ex-MI6 operative who since leaving under a dark cloud has been working on his own thing.  He is tracked down by lawyer Melody who is working for a mysterious anonymous client. But she's now in danger and Scott must try and Excellent,  Face Paced Thriller. Black13 starts straight away in a shroud of mystery. It just gets better when you meet main character Scott Pearce.  This has been listed the first of Pearce novels and I can't wait for the others. Especially if anything like this one. Scott is an ex-MI6 operative who since leaving under a dark cloud has been working on his own thing.  He is tracked down by lawyer Melody who is working for a mysterious anonymous client. But she's now in danger and Scott must try and keep them both safe. I loved Scott and his friends characters. The book had many twists and turns to keep me interested. To be honest after I got into the first few chapters I didn't want to put it down. I can see amazing things happening with this series. Would highly recommend.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Karen Cole

    It's been several hours since I finished Black 13 and I still feel as if I've been through the wringer - what a book this is! As the first novel in The Scott Pearce series, it's not a spoiler to say Scott somehow makes it through even the most dire of circumstances but he - and my nerves - were tested to the limit in an exhilarating thriller which never lets up from the word go. The shocking events in the prologue means it is immediately obvious that there are deadly forces at play here and even It's been several hours since I finished Black 13 and I still feel as if I've been through the wringer - what a book this is! As the first novel in The Scott Pearce series, it's not a spoiler to say Scott somehow makes it through even the most dire of circumstances but he - and my nerves - were tested to the limit in an exhilarating thriller which never lets up from the word go. The shocking events in the prologue means it is immediately obvious that there are deadly forces at play here and even those who have experienced working in the most dangerous circumstances will be up against a ruthless enemy who always seems to be one step ahead. Scott Pearce was once hailed a hero for preventing a catastrophic attack in Islamabad but when he continues to insist that some unidentified perpetrators manged to escape, he is viewed as a conspiracy nut and eventually forced out of MI6. We are first introduced to Pearce in Railay, Thailand and he clearly hasn't given up the risk-taking or the pursuit of justice. However, his life rapidly becomes even more dangerous when he is hired as a climbing guide by a woman called Melody Gold who knows his real identity. She informs him she doesn't want him to teach her how to climb and instead shows him grainy footage of a dead former comrade. From this point onwards, the tension rarely eases up as Pearce and Melody are forced to flee Thailand before discovering that they aren't any safer in London. As Pearce gathers some trusted former associates around him (my favourite being Leila) the breakneck pace of the plot meant I was glued to the pages, my heart in my mouth as just as it seemed things couldn't get much worse, they often did. There are some hugely tense scenes in Black 13 as the protagonists desperately try to untangle a sordid, shadowy web of deceit and corruption. Although there are several nail-biting moments, there is a scene towards the end of the novel which I found particularly difficult to read. I can't give anything away but it's the most terrifying part of a story which should give anybody nightmares. Scott Pearce is a complex, enigmatic protagonist and the glimpses into his background provide some explanation as to why he has become such a driven, intelligent and accomplished man. I welcomed the recognition that his lifestyle might be addictive but has still left him with psychological scars. Likewise, although Leila is a highly skilled, resolute woman who refuses to let her past define her, there are still moments which are a poignant reminder that she will always live with the horrors she endured in Syria. Black 13 isn't just an exciting action thriller however, and as noteworthy as the high-octane scenes are, it's the underlying themes which really made the book for me. Adam Hamdy takes a timely look at some of the biggest issues we currently face; radical extremism, indoctrination by stealth and our increasingly polemical discourse, particularly on social media. Although Russian interference in global state affairs is widely accepted, few people ever stop to really question whether the other information they are presented with has been put there to manipulate them; beyond a vague recognition that sock-puppet and bot accounts exist, many of us are guilty of reacting to tweets and posts which confirm our own biases one way or another. As Pearce discovers the shocking truth about the deadly intentions of his enemies, perhaps the real message is that society is allowing itself to become ever more radicalised by populism and that we all face a propaganda war of words and beliefs, the eventual consequences of which are too frightening to contemplate. I loved Black 13, it's an outstanding contemporary thriller with a breathtaking, intelligent storyline and a vividly realised cast of characters. I'm delighted that there is more to come as the conclusion left me desperate to find out what lies in store for Scott Pearce in the next book. Very highly recommended.

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