Thursday, August 27, 2015

Review: The King's Deception (Cotton Malone #8) by Steve Berry

Cotton Malone is back! Steve Berry’s new international adventure blends gripping contemporary political intrigue, Tudor treachery, and high-octane thrills into one riveting novel of suspense.

Cotton Malone and his fifteen-year-old son, Gary, are headed to Europe. As a favor to his former boss at the Justice Department, Malone agrees to escort a teenage fugitive back to England. But after he is greeted at gunpoint in London, both the fugitive and Gary disappear, and Malone learns that he’s stumbled into a high-stakes diplomatic showdown—an international incident fueled by geopolitical gamesmanship and shocking Tudor secrets.

At its heart is the Libyan terrorist convicted of bombing Pan Am Flight 103, who is set to be released by Scottish authorities for “humanitarian reasons.” An outraged American government objects, but nothing can persuade the British to intervene.

Except, perhaps, Operation King’s Deception.

Run by the CIA, the operation aims to solve a centuries-old mystery, one that could rock Great Britain to its royal foundations.

Blake Antrim, the CIA operative in charge of King’s Deception, is hunting for the spark that could rekindle a most dangerous fire, the one thing that every Irish national has sought for generations: a legal reason why the English must leave Northern Ireland. The answer is a long-buried secret that calls into question the legitimacy of the entire forty-five-year reign of Elizabeth I, the last Tudor monarch, who completed the conquest of Ireland and seized much of its land. But Antrim also has a more personal agenda, a twisted game of revenge in which Gary is a pawn. With assassins, traitors, spies, and dangerous disciples of a secret society closing in, Malone is caught in a lethal bind. To save Gary he must play one treacherous player against another—and only by uncovering the incredible truth can he hope to prevent the shattering consequences of the King’s Deception.

While I didn't find this book as compelling as other Steve Berry and similar books I've read, it still had its interesting moments.

In The King's Deception, Cotton and his son Gary have to escort an escaped teen to London as a favor to Cotton's former boss. However, Cotton and Gary almost immediately find themselves in the middle of a plot that involves several countries and ancient history.

For maybe the first half of the book, I wasn't super impressed with the story. I couldn't see exactly what game the characters were playing, though I saw glimpses of what the ultimate goal and twist would be.

Like with most books from this genre, there are plot twists and history plot twists. The plot twists involving the main characters in the book didn't surprise me all that much. I wouldn't say that I called it immediately, but when the twist was revealed, I didn't exactly gasp either. I found the history plot twist very interesting, though. I've never actually heard that particular legend, but I think it's remotely plausible and possible. It would be so cool if it were true, but I'm glad that the resolution of this book was the way it was.


  1. It's like going on a tour of London.
  2. The book has a happy ending.
  3. The historical legend at the heart of the story is very interesting. 


  1. Some plot twists are predictable. 


  1. You like Steve Berry's other books.
  2. You like both Jason Bourne and Robert Langdon.
  3. You are fascinated by British history. 




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