James P. Sumner | International Bestselling Author

Critical Strike: A Thrillerverse Event

(6 customer reviews)


Format: Trade Paperback (ISBN: 9781914191268)

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Critical Strike: A Thrillerverse Event

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They knew something was coming. But nothing could’ve prepared them for this.

The attack that Adrian Hell and GlobaTech have been working to prevent finally transpires. What begins with a violent attack on the streets of Washington, DC sets in motion a chain of events that will change the world forever.

Old enemies must forge new alliances. Individual agendas must give way to common goals. The fight everyone has been fearing is finally upon them, and only one thing is certain:

Not everyone will survive.

An epic thriller that tells a compelling story on an unprecedented scale, Critical Strike brings together James P. Sumner’s three bestselling series for one blockbuster literary event that will take your breath away! There is nothing like this on the bookshelves. This is what would happen if you crossed Reacher and Bourne with The Avengers. It will grab you from the first page and never let go. Simply unmissable!

6 reviews for Critical Strike: A Thrillerverse Event

  1. Margaret Bowerman

    Critical Strike is the most compelling book I’ve read this year! James Sumner is acutely aware of events in the current political and social climate as he unites former enemies in a quest to save and rebuild democracy. He takes Lord Acton’s quote, “Absolute power corrupts absolutely,” and uses this to create a frighteningly perceptive look at how influence and authority yield to dominance and supremacy through violence.

    With so much at stake, old enemies must come together to engage in a battle that could mean the very end of a democratic republic. Richly drawn characters and mesmeric action make this a story that will stay with you long after reading Critical Strike!

  2. Kathryn A Defranc

    No one is ready for what happens,on the streets, in the cities, in every little crevice of our country…A series of attacks so devastating that the country as we have known it can be No More. Old enemies must work together, hated foes become ‘friends’ for the best of everyone. And everything…This book Will shock you, scare you, open your eyes to so many things that Can Happen today. All it takes is one idea that is taught to others, that becomes a ‘mission’ and spreads evil throughout. This author weaves an intricate tale bringing together characters of differing thoughts, occupations and places in life to work, together, for one purpose,and Nothing will Ever be the same.
    Violence against begets violence from within, those brutalized and ravaged will commit violent acts themselves to attempt to regain control. Characters we have seen in action before must overcome their own priorities for a fight bigger than any before. A fight to maintain Our way of life, or forever be hiding in fear. A story that will hold you spellbound from the first action until the very last. That Will make you think, that you will Not forget long after you close the page.

  3. Paul Everett

    A superb culmination of all the books and all the various and varied characters, zipped into rip-roaring action-packed finale. Perfect.

  4. Bruce Bockman

    Well, this is it.
    The Big One.
    The culmination, many years—and many novels–in the making.
    The Thrillerverse, James P. Sumner’s original, and some would say, audacious undertaking of linking multiple characters and overlapping plot lines from separate novels into one cohesive grand, overarching, novel, Critical Strike, that unifies not only the characters in time and space, but reveals the final destination, the final confrontation, that all the previous novels were unknowingly hurtling towards: an all-or-nothing battle against an impossible foe unlike any anyone has ever seen before, for nothing less than the very future of the entire nation.
    With ambitions this monumental, this epic, there really is only a single question: was Mr. Sumner successful—did he pull it off?
    And, no…
    Critical Strike does, in fact, bring together the World’s Greatest Assassin, Adrian Hell; his girlfriend/fellow assassin, Ruby, and the rest of the Blackstar crew; together with the Globatech team (Julie Fisher, Jericho Stone, Ray Collins, under Moses Buchanan); as well as Roach and his sister Rebecca; and Orion/Tristar baddies Quincy Hall, Brandon Crow and super-killer Jay—and a veritable cast of thousands. They form separate factions and undertake different approaches to tackle the problems at hand, so they are united in purpose, but sometime separated in actions.
    The overall evil plan, which had been foreshadowed and hinted at frequently in the previous novels, hanging like an ominous dark cloud over all that had come before, turns out to be a formidable and worthy plot, a malevolence so dark as to be almost unthinkable in its simplicity and genius. Surprise–we’re all screwed.
    I shall say no more for fear of revealing spoilers.
    This is where the novel shines, engaging all the characters in a creative, larger-than-life drama that truly is “epic” as promised. Sumner creates a truly ingenious scenario, grounded in current events and historical precedent that is as frightening as it is prescient. It’s a take that is obvious yet under-examined, all the more menacing in its simplicity and therefore plausibility, and as such, absolutely terrifying.
    All our old friends retain their uniqueness—Adrien Hell chapters, for example, are still told in the first person, still filled with dialogue with his inner Satan, and of course is still irreverent—and freaking hilarious.
    There are many moments that are poignant and deep, that can bring a tear to your eye, or give you pause to think a moment on a truth revealed. Plus, mayhem; and lots and lots of killing. And maybe some more mayhem, just for good measure…
    The typical Sumner novel follows a pretty set formula, much like a roller coaster ride. There is the long, sweetly-agonizing climb up the hill as the story is set up. And once the cars all crest the top of the hill, you better be hanging on because the train is off like a bat out of hell, screaming down the hill, slamming into turns, shooting up a short hump only to jam you back down again—leaving your stomach somewhere behind on the tracks—and baby, there are no brakes on this thing; scenery is just a blur as you laugh and scream all the way into the station—eyes watering, tongue hanging out as you pant trying to catch your breath, laughing hysterically, with only one thought—can we go again? That is a James P. Sumner thriller, and the final third of Critical Strike delivers this in spades.
    The first two-thirds, well, not so much…
    Critical Strike is a different animal. There are a lot of moving parts, a lot of territory to cover, so much to set up and move around. More of a chess game than a thrill ride. Sometimes, when an artist tries to stretch and grow, his hardcore fans resist and want him to keep doing what he has been doing, what they’ve always loved, what they expect. Sometimes they come around, as with, say, The Beatles; sometimes they don’t. So, there’s that.
    Beyond the challenge of evolving beyond his audience, there’s a small matter of execution. In Critical Strike the single largest plot point (which I will not reveal) is accomplished with essentially a single line of exposition. There is no explanation as to how it was possible. There is no questioning from any of the characters; a fairly outrageous and critical action just happens, and we are just supposed to swallow it whole. There are other, smaller actions that are introduced in order to move the narrative that are similarly either out of character or do not make any logical sense within the context of the reality of the book, yet there are no explanations; they just are. Regrettably, even a few lines or paragraphs of explanation could have woven these actions back within the framework of the story presented.
    The net effect is to distance the reader, and lessen, rather than increase, tension.
    Credit must be given to Sumner for expanding the scale of the narrative, even taking a stab at “myth making” (for lack of a better term). Perhaps the previously mentioned missteps in execution prevented these sometime disparate elements from feeling integrated into the broader narrative, and however clever and well thought out, occasionally feel disjointed, and the narrative flow, bogged down.
    In summary, Critical Strike is a really good, if slightly uneven, effort to create the grand, epic Thrillerverse climax novel. It is highly successful in uniting all the characters, “good guys” and “villains”, from multiple novels and having them clash in a truly monumental, heroic battle befitting the lengthy build up over the course of several years. The cause is righteous, timely, and raises important issues to consider, while being entertaining, fun, and thoughtful.
    I would definitely recommend Critical Strike to anyone familiar with James P Sumner, and an absolute must-read for anyone who has been following the unique, unprecedented, Thrillerverse saga. I would not recommend this to anyone unfamiliar with Mr. Sumner’s work, but would urge you to become-so immediately by starting with Adrian Hell book #1, True Conviction, and very soon you will find yourself ready for Critical Strike. Warning, this is highly addicting…
    I have been given an advanced copy of this book in exchange for this honest review.

  5. Julie Stafford

    A fantastic read that brings all the strings from all the past Adrian Hell books together. This read is very complicated and to follow it in order to understand what you reading you have to pay close attention. Oh course all of James Sumner’s books are not easy reads, which is one of the things I love about this author’s books. I love the complicated thrills and spills that Mr. Sumner so skillfully plants in all his stories. I guarantee that you will love them as well. This is not a stand alone book by any means. You need to start with Adrian Hell #1 and read forward from there. I highly recommend any of Mr. Sumner’s books. But the Adrian Hell Series I dare say is his best to date. Start it today!

  6. Mike Carney

    I received an advance copy of Mr Sumner’s latest book and it didn’t disappoint. Whilst it can be read as a standalone novel, it would assist readers not conversant with the characters to read some of the Adrian Hell franchise, which are highly recommended, to become acquainted with some of the main characters. This novel is fast paced, has many unexpected twists and turns and for me the sign of a good novel is one where the reader does not want to put the book down and I certainly didn’t want to put the book down. It flow really well as the gang travel across the length and breadth of the USA. Mr Sumner is certainly on form with this latest novel and I can recommend this to anyone who has not come across this author before. Do not miss out on an explosive finale. I can’t wait for the next installment.

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