Rosenberg ties in a brilliant novel of conflict and terror in the Middle East with a story about two crusading foreign correspondents. These are men that live to get that story and will do anything to be first on the scene, scooping the competition and delivering the news as quickly as possible to the readers of the services they work for.
The first reporter we meet is A. B. Collins, who had been granted an interview with the King of Jordan forty years previously. He is a reporter working for the Associated Press and goes to the place where the King has agreed to meet him. Events ensue preventing the meeting but allowing A. B. a major scoop.
In the next segment, J.B. Collins, grandson of A.B. and a foreign correspondent for the New York Times, manages a meeting with a jailed officer of ISIS and learns of their plan to launch an attack on a third country. The terrorist’s insinuation is that ISIS has obtained weapons of mass destruction, quite possibly poison gas which they will use in their attack on the country they have in mind.
Action accelerates, J.B. meets and begins a love affair with a beautiful agent of the Israeli Mossad. He then manages to arrange a meeting with the actual head of ISIS held in a Jordanian prison and is advised that the terror group does have poison gas. In a well executed escape from the prison by the Terrorists, J.B. is forced to view the killing by the gas of several members of the prison’s authorities.
Next on J.B.’s list of events is to witness and write about a high level meeting in Jordan of the U.S. president, the King of Jordan, the prime minister of Israel and the head of the Palestinian people living next to Israel. The events of the meeting’s organization and what happens there are realistically described by Rosenberg, who in several prior books, has proven himself a master of events that took place and are taking place in the volatile Middle East.
The ending is a well executed cliff hanger that is obviously page one of the next book, in what should be more than one, possibly more novels utilizing the author’s prodigious knowledge of what is really happening in the Middle East.
1/15 Paul Lane
THE THIRD TARGET by Joel C. Rosenberg. Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (January 6, 2015). ISBN: 978-1414336275. 448p.