Monday, February 11, 2013

Book Review: Damascus Countdown

Joel Rosenberg has made a name for himself writing novels that carry an echo of prophetic fulfillment mixed with story lines straight from modern newspapers, all the while avoiding the explicit "thus saith the Lord" of the Left Behind Series. Damascus Countdown is his newest novel, and it doesn't disappoint. What would happen if Israel launched a preemptive strike against Iran, and the Islamic world forms a caliphate of nations to strike back, engaging in all-out war with God's chosen nation? Rosenberg goes there, and sticks in the middle of the action David Shirazi, a top CIA agent and undercover operative within the Jihadist caliphate.

            Rosenberg does a phenomenal job of combining action that is fast-paced and fun to read with a storyline that moves along well. The action is believable and realistic, but not over the top graphic. The message of the Gospel is clear in the story, but without making the story feel preachy. Characters incorporate Old Testament prophecies that hint at the events being described, without making it sound like the author is saying, "it must happen like this." The reader experiences the struggles of young faith along with Shirazi, who must attempt to balance Christian belief with the demands of a CIA operation. We are introduced to other converted Muslims whose passion for their countrymen's souls leaps off the page and adds yet another dimension to the story. 

            If there was a weakness, and I'm not sure there is, it would be that the ending happens quickly, and without adequate explanation. I won't give it away, but much like a movie in which one thing seems assured, but in the next frame you see something completely different, the book ends in a very similar way.
 I would give Damascus Countdown 5 out of 5 stars. An excellent read.
I received a free copy of this book from Tyndale Publishers in exchange for a fair and honest review.

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