THIS book is the latest in Chris Ryan’s Strike Back series. This time, the author has set the story in the run-up to Britain’s exit from the European Union.
Red Strike revolves around ex-SAS operative John Bald who finds himself down on his luck after his ex-fiancee swindled him out of the gold bullion that he’d stolen from some Russians.
His past then catches up with him when agents employed by the Russians try to kill him and recoup the gold bullion.
Luckily for Bald, he is saved by two SAS soldiers. They then tell him that he’s wanted for a job by his old bosses in MI6.
Bald is paired with his old regiment friend and former partner, John Porter, to go undercover as bodyguards for politician Derek Lansbury who’s suspected of being a Russian agent.
As the clock ticks down in Brexit Britain, we also find out the fate of former Russian intelligence officer Nikolai Volkov, who had cut links with his employers in the previous book to work with MI6.
Volkov becomes the victim of a nerve agent attack and is moved to a MI6 safe house in the countryside. But the Russian agents after him still manage to locate him.
As for Bald, he finds that he and Porter still make a formidable team.
They prove they are still in their element despite their age, and are determined to get the job done.
In the process, they manage to foil a nefarious plot concocted by Russian President Kolotov and his American counterpart, President Drummond, to establish a Christian empire.
As always, Ryan tells a good story, with plenty of gripping action, although the beginning is a bit draggy.
The finale is a classic ending to a good thriller.