Monday, June 21, 2010

The Lion

I readily confess to being partial to macho novels. I admit that reading plots that involve fictional characters who are able to solve some of the world's problems (even in a fictional context)  gives me a certain feeling of control and hope that somehow the problems of our country can be managed. I'm not a person who can hide my head in the sand, and say I don't watch TV or read about the news since I can't do anything about the problems, why do I need to know about them? I can't be that Pollyanna about real issues of the world where I live, and I feel we all have an obligation for collective moral outrage when the oceans have been turned into sludge, jobs are disappearing, people are losing homes, and forces from abroad would like nothing better than our total annihilation. When I see the news, I feel helpless. When I read a book, I feel my control issues are pampered, but I'm not naive and I'm not in denial.


When I read The Lion's Game by Nelson DeMille, ten years ago, I was fascinated by the clever plot published in Oct. 2000. After Sept. 11, 2001, I was really troubled by the issues it raised. It is called fiction, but I feel it is fictionalized non-fiction. The criminal mind on a political, religious, and personal vendetta isn't easy to confront. Fanatics are always dangerous. It is a little like swallowing bitter medicine--it is a real wake-up call. It's not pretty, it's not sweet, but I take my hat off to all those folks involved in the struggle to overcome the kinds of adversaries in this work of fiction that are all too real in the world as we know it today. I am a natural worrier so as I look at the struggles and conflicts in The Lion, I look for the real problems and real solutions to challenges raised. The answers and conclusions I reached are not what I would have thought in 1960. Citizens have to make their peace in their own way with the kind of world we have now. This book continues to raise some important issues that have confronted us in the last ten years. Even so, The Lion is a really fun read.

The Lion's Game has always been on my favorite books list and I wouldn't read the sequel, The Lion, without first reading The Lion's Game. Nelson DeMille has a talent for fast paced drama and a cryptic sense of humor that I needed for comic relief while reading this gut wrenching thriller, The Lion. Plum Island, Nightfall and Wildfire, also had NYPD cop John Corey as a central character who seems to be able to handle chaos with his wisecracking irreverence. I'm a huge fan of the character John Corey and I'll inhale any plot by Nelson DeMille. Highly marketable authors like to leave a cliffhanger to segue to a sequel and Nelson DeMille is no exception. Darn his hide--I hope he doesn't wait ten years for the next one.


  1. I've never read any of these books, so I'm glad to have another author to discover. Right now I'm reading the second book in Stieg Larsson's trilogy. I couldn't put it down last night and finally made myself stop. Today I won't pick it up until I know I can finish it. I loe books like these!

  2. Interesting that you mention Stieg Larsson because friends were raving last weekend about The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. I will have to look into this trilogy.I like to discover new authors. I am eagerly waiting for Barry Eisler's next book. I loved his John Rain series. Lee Child and Stuart Woods are favorites too. I have such a long list of favorite authors.

  3. I am just about to start this Trilogy - but I need to know I have hours of interupted reading ahead of me! R. J. I don't have a TV but do have a radio which is on all the time, tuned in to BBC 4 (called world service everywhere else) - the dumping of the TV was a life-style choice because I was tired of all the rubbish I was watching.

  4. I'll pop these on to my growing book list. Amazon keeps my list nice and safe until I decide to order again. Right now I need fantasy. The real world is getting me down. Books are always good for wrapping us in a blanket, even it they're thrillers. Nothing could compare to the news these days. Right now I'm reading The Russian Concubine. It's a great read.

    Thanks for sharing.

  5. I haven't discovered Kate Furnivall but I see on Amazon that she has a 2010 book called The Jewel of St.Petersburg that sounds interesting. The reviews of books on Amazon are fun to read. I will check with my public library for this author. I am trying to discipline myself to read books from the library rather than buying them. I have to have patience to wait sometimes.