HOME SCHOOL BOOK REVIEW
Book: Targets of Revenge: A Jordan Sandor Thriller
Author: Jeffrey S. Stephens
Publisher: Gallery Books, 2013
Related websites: http://www.jeffreystephens.com (author), http://www.SimonandSchuster.com (publisher)
Language level: 5
(1=nothing objectionable; 2=common euphemisms and/or childish slang terms; 3=some cursing or profanity; 4=a lot of cursing or profanity; 5=obscenity and/or vulgarity)
Reading level: Adults only (if that)!
Rating: 0 stars (NOT RECOMMENDED)
Reviewed by Wayne S. Walker
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Stephens, Jeffrey S. Targets of Revenge: A Jordan Sandor Thriller (published in 2013 by Gallery Books, a division of Simon and Schuster Inc., 1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York City, NY 10020). Jordan Sandor is a CIA Agent in his late thirties who is on a mission to stop a Venezuelan drug-runner and terrorist Rafael Cabello, known as Adina. After crash-landing in the heart of the Venezuelan jungle and infiltrating Adina’s secret compound, he learns that in addition to cocaine Adina is also manufacturing anthrax. After he manages to escape, finding out what Adina’s plans are takes Jordan to Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt, and Adina’s co-worker, Russian mobster Roman (Ronny) Sudakov. Managing to foil an attempt on his life by Sudakov‘s men while on a diving expedition, Jordan flees Egypt and flies to Moscow to learn more about Sudakov and his activities but must survive still another plot to kill him. There even seems to be a leak that results in one of Jordan’s co-workers being killed. Will Jordan ever accomplish his mission? Can he even find out what Adina intends to do with the anthrax and where?
Targets of Revenge is the third of author Jeffrey S. Stephens’s Jordan Sandor Series, after Targets of Deception and Targets of Opportunity. Not having read the first two, I felt somewhat as if I were stepping right into the middle of something. I will say that the politics in the book appears to be fairly conservative, and it is an interesting story with lots of suspense, but a great deal of killing occurs, although one almost expects that with this kind of book. However, I normally don’t read spy thriller novels because the vast majority of them are filled with scenes of sexual immorality and lots of foul language, but Targets of Revenge was sent to me by the publisher for review, so I read it. Unfortunately, this book is no exception to the norm. Of course, there are copious instances of drinking alcoholic beverages. Nearly every profanity, curse word, and vulgar term known to the English language, and perhaps a few other languages, are used. And the requisite examples of promiscuity are found.
Early on in the book, Jordan meets up with an old friend on St. Barthelemy and mentions a mutual female acquaintance. The friend asks, “The one you spent the night with at Guanahani?” Jordan responds, “How indiscreet of you to mention that.” Then later on, in Sharm el-Sheikh an innocent and naive young New York model named Lilli Mindlovich, who is on vacation there, is sent by Sudakov to find Jordan in a bar and bring him to Sudakov’s yacht. Before they leave for the yacht, Jordan takes her to his hotel room where “They spent the next part of the next two hours exploring some of each other’s secrets—such as…a mutual affinity for long kisses, slow erotic movements, and each other. They finished creating a damp, tangled jigsaw puzzle of the sheets.” Not necessarily a pornographic description, but enough detail to let the reader know that fornication has been committed. After reading through Jordan’s little romp in bed with Lilli, I determined if there were any further sexual activity, I would quit reading. There was not, so I finished it, but the two mentioned were enough. I am not in the habit of recommending books that appear to glorify or glamorize immorality. When I received the book, I was hoping to be able to report about a nice, clean spy thriller novel that decent people could read without all the usual objectionable elements. Alas, I cannot.