Review: The Brave and The Bold

Finally, we get The Brave and the Bold: Book 3 of The Hidden Truth.

You may remember that the previous two books in the series explored an alternate history where 9-11 killed President Al Gore, destroyed the White House, spared the twin towers, and revealed a shadowy conspiracy that had been twisting fate, warping history, and bending culture and all of society to their will.

And most of that was in the opening chapters of book one.

Book two was a chess game, as the enemy came closer and closer to encroaching on our heroes’ turf, raiding academia, targeting professors for personal destruction, and a game of wills that only the wary would pass.

Then there came the Order of Preacher spies, the tong assassins, and the forces of counter revolution, for lack of a better term.

And now, book three. 

As the write up says,

Where we go one, we go all!
When the Civic Circle tries to embroil the U.S. in a senseless war, Pete must leverage his summer intern position to infiltrate their Social Justice Leadership Forum on Jekyll Island, and disrupt their plans.The danger – and the opportunity – are far greater than he imagines. The sinister power behind the Cabal – a power that aims to reshape society, destroy our civilization, and cast humanity into bondage – tolerates no rivals. Deep within the conspiracy’s stronghold Pete discovers not only the secrets by which they retain their power, but also a crucial vulnerability that could cripple the Cabal with one decisive blow.

With his plans in jeopardy and his life at risk, Pete must forge an unlikely alliance of rivals, turn The Civic Circle against itself, expose their secrets, and end their threat once and for all.The ultimate struggle for the ultimate stakes hinges on one simple question:

Will fortune favor the brave and the bold?

While much of the series has been espionage with a hint of satire, with a heavy slathering of science, this one was extra heavy on all three. The spy stuff with countermeasures and counter surveillance, the pages of manipulation through mind-bending “feelz logic” of special snowflakes, and very heavy on the science.

Right off of the bat, I can say that they had some very nice twists in this one, just in the opening pages. Let me just say that that’s one way to do a recap. And while the front half is a solid recap with laying some solid foundations, the back half is the really fun part. I won’t say any of it is a slog, but the pacing was a little uneven, especially in the first hundred pages or so.

However, the one thing I should point out here is that this is possibly the best conspiracy theory I’ve seen since Foucault’s Pendulum. What Umberto Eco did with conspiracy theories, Hans has surpassed, weaving together a collection of real life events that create a dark pattern when you look at the convenient timing.

Also of interest is that, while this is an alternate history, unlike many of the ones I’ve read, with some exceptions — there is a concrete reason discussed in the novel for why the timeline has diverged.

All in all, a fun read. Thoroughly enjoyed.

Click here to buy it today.

And, while you’re buying that anyway…



About Declan Finn

Declan Finn is the author of Honor at Stake, an urban fantasy novel, nominated for Best Horror in the first annual Dragon Awards. He has also written The Pius Trilogy, an attempt to take Dan Brown to the woodshed in his own medium -- soon to be republished by Silver Empire Press. Finn has also written "Codename: Winterborn," an SF espionage thriller, and it's follow-up, "Codename: Winterborn." And "It was Only on Stun!" and "Set To Kill" are murder mysteries at a science fiction convention.
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