Sunday, March 22, 2009

Certain Jeopardy by Capt. Jeff Struecker with Alton Gansky

Certain Jeopardy

Certain Jeopardy
by Capt. Jeff Struecker with Alton Gansky

Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: B&H Publishing Group
First Released: May 1, 2009

Author Website

Source: Netgalley, online ARC from publisher

Back Cover Description:
Six American men live behind a protective fa├žade, their real work hidden from neighbors and friends. Different in countless ways, they are intimately the same in one: at any moment their lives can be altered with a phone call, and their actions may change the world.

They are Special Ops. And one team’s mission is about to hit certain jeopardy status when the discovery of an Al Qaeda base in Venezuela becomes secondary to thwarting the transport of a nuclear weapons expert from that training camp to Iran.

Informed by the true combat experience of Captain Jeff Struecker and finessed by award-winning novelist Alton Gansky, Certain Jeopardy is an immersing and pulsating fictional account of what really happens at every level of a stealth engagement: the physical enemy encounter, the spiritual war fought within a soldier, and the emotional battles in families back at home.

This book is a military thriller. The story was written in short, quick chapters from rotating point of views--and there were a fairly large number of point of view characters. At the beginning, I sometimes got confused as to how everyone was related to each other, but that didn't last long.

The prose felt a little unrefined, but that fit the character of the story.

The book was fast-paced. The author clearly explained the equipment and jargon used in the story without bogging down the pace with too many details. Every moment was full of tension and conflict, both at home with the team's families and on mission with the team. The conflict and reactions all felt realistic and plausible.

Characters were varied and engaging. Several of the characters were Christian. Their faith mattered to them and made a difference in how they reacted in difficulties, but the Christian content was never preachy.

There is no sex in this book and all the swearing is of the "he swore" variety rather than actual printed cuss words. Overall, I'd highly recommend this book as a "good, clean fun" novel.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt: Chapter One
[From an Uncorrected Proof ARC, so the text of the published book might vary slightly from the below.]


Sgt. Major Eric Moyer hated goats. He had a burning desire to swear at the top of his lungs. Not that it would do any good. He stuffed the urge.


The urge returned.

"Junior, get that radio operational. If we don't reach CAS soon, we'll leave this mountain in body bags.

"Working on it, Boss. The snow is giving me grief. I can't find a stable spot for the satellite antenna. Getting shot at from six directions isn't helping."


AK-47 bullets whistled over their heads. Moyer pushed himself up from his shallow trench and fired a few quick rounds from his M4 carbine. He pulled the trigger again but nothing happened. Flattening himself in the trench, he barked, "Reloading."

In a practiced move, Moyer ejected the spent magazine and rammed a full one in its place, giving him another thirty rounds. The weapon could fire seven hundred rounds a minute. Only disciple and training kept him from emptying the magazine in a few seconds.

The sound of enemy gunfire erupted again. Staff Sgt. Pete Rasor grunted and raised his hands to his face.

"Junior. Junior! You hit?"

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