No Remorse by Ian Walkley
Publisher: Marq Books
Genre: Action/Adventure, Contemporary, Suspense/Mystery
Length: Full Length (344 pgs)
Contains: Graphic, violent sex, contains multiple child rape scenes, and child exploitation
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Water Lily
Lee McCloud (Mac) has a reputation as a loose cannon. So when a secret agency operating outside the law recruits him for his special operations skills his team leader Tally, a tough, attractive computer genius, is ordered to keep him on a tight leash. But a tight leash is the last thing Mac wants. His intent is to use the agency’s massive resources to track down Sophia, a close friend’s daughter, who has been kidnapped in Mexico.
From the beginning, sparks fly between Mac and Tally. Mac sees Tally as an office worker, not qualified for field operations. For her part, Tally views Mac as little more than a cold-blooded killer. The conflict escalates as the two are forced to play at husband and wife in order to get close to their next target.
Ignoring orders to stay out of trouble, Mac enlists the help of Scotty, a British soldier, and Jog, a Lebanese fixer. They follow the kidnappers’ trail to Paris, where events lead them to suspect Sophia is a captive of Sheik Khalid, a billionaire Saudi exile who is suspected of supporting terrorist groups by shipping weapons, drugs and slaves on his luxury vessel, Princess Aliya.
Mac and Tally discover they have feelings for each other, but events lead Mac to question whether Tally is working to another agenda. With time running out, the group dodges assassins, corrupt generals, evil medicos, Mossad agents, corrupt bureaucrats and sharks. But they cannot anticipate what is waiting for them on Khalid’s fortress island of Andaran, or that there’s much more at stake than Sophia…
This graphic thriller is not for the faint of heart. The characters are well-rounded, believable and many, downright terrifying. The topic, human trafficking, is all too real. From the first line, the reader is drawn into a sordid world where the ends justify the means. This book is a roller coaster ride through a sick “fun” house where the scary clowns are armed and dangerous and the air is tainted with evil.
I certainly felt the horror, agony and desperation of the victims and their families. There is no psychic distance. I bled for the victims. The sexual exploitation of children and the live organ harvesting were particularly hard for me to stomach, as the scenes nearly jumped off the page thanks to the author's skill with words. Mac’s frustration and pain are palatable as he battles his personal demons and the near-misses in his quest to save his goddaughter. The casual cruelty of Khalid Yubani and his shard of society where life is cheap and “pleasure” is both violent and fleeting is all too believable.
This book is well written and the author is amazingly capable, which in this case makes for a difficult, emotionally exhausting read. No Remorse is compelling and riveting, but definitely not for everyone. The characters and their situations were so real, I found myself praying for them. This book is hard to put down, but I don’t know that I “liked” it as "like" isn't a word I'd use for how I felt. I believe I may be too soft or the book to explicit for me.
If you enjoy highly suspenseful books that expose the seedy underbelly of a violent and amoral segment of the world where, whether the good guy wins or not, there’s a lot of collateral damage, and if you don't mind graphic detail, I'm certain you’ll find Ian Walkley’s No Remorse gripping.