Blogger’s Preface – As an author myself, I cringe at the thought of reviewing another’s fictional work. Knowing the taxing effort one must expend to write a thriller, it’s hard to be objective. Nonetheless, a friend suggested that I review The Last Israelis and after finishing it, I believe that the public at large must hear about this book. Therefore, as dispassionately as I can convey my thoughts, below is my review of The Last Israelis.
The Author’s self-declared goal for the book was to perhaps influence the 2012 P5+1 talks with Iran and thus bolster calls for their nuclear disarmament. Such an ambitious effort aside, at the very least, Mr. Beck’s first novel effectively informed readers across the world about a dangerous nuclear armed Iran. Likewise, details and facts regarding subsequent dangers to the small State of Israel are not in any way overstated in The Last Israelis.
The apocalyptic political thriller is laced with important real-life facts that lend credibility to the story, thus making it all the more chilling. Mr. Beck’s pervasive educational background is also evident in the work. His grasp on an extensive vocabulary is likewise conspicuous in the story as he uses a few words that even this reader had to look up. However, those same “Ivy League” academic leanings also appear to hinder the early narrative because the writing tended to come across as sterile and emotionless. While those with a military background are trained to accomplish their duties automatically, it would seem to this veteran that the weight of millions of lives resting on the shoulders of these submariners would produce much more impassioned thoughts and responses. Nonetheless, as the story advances towards its conclusion, the heat of the crew’s situation eventually comes to the forefront.
The book’s real-life potential makes this novel a must read regardless of its slow start. With facts ripped from today’s headlines, the finale rushes towards you as you are confronted with the horrific truth of “what the world could be”. The Last Israelis challenges even the most politically passive to consider the reality of a world influenced by despites and madmen.
Lastly, at the penning of this review, American warships are steaming toward Syria and preparing for an all-out war due to a reported use of chemical weapons by the Syrian government on their own people. Russia has stated that they will stand with the Syrians. With the recent removal of the Muslim Brotherhood from power in Egypt, escalating violence appears to be driving that country to civil war. Tensions all around the Middle East have rose to a level never before seen in modern history. There are also now countries surrounding tiny Israel that have nuclear and chemical weapons. Some of those countries have threatened to attack Israel in order to unite the Arab world. In this regard, The Last Israelis has succeeded in bringing this most important axiom to the forefront of its readers’ minds: Israel lives in a very dangerous neighborhood.
I highly recommend The Last Israelis. But that recommendation comes with a caveat of caution: As you read through its compelling pages – don’t think for a second that it’s only fiction.
Well done Mr. Beck!