An aircraft carrier adrift with a crew the size of a small town. A killer in their midst. And the disgraced Navy SEAL who must track him down . . . The high-octane debut thriller from New York Times bestselling writing team Webb & Mann—combat-decorated Navy SEAL Brandon Webb and award-winning author John David Mann.
The moment Navy SEAL sniper Finn sets foot on the USS Abraham Lincoln to hitch a ride home from the Persian Gulf, it’s clear something is deeply wrong. Leadership is weak. Morale is low. And when crew members start disappearing one by one, what at first seems like a random string of suicides soon reveals something far more sinister: There’s a serial killer on board.
Suspicion falls on Finn, the newcomer to the ship. After all, he’s being sent home in disgrace, recalled from the field under the dark cloud of a mission gone horribly wrong. He’s also a lone wolf, haunted by gaps in his memory and the elusive sense that something he missed may have contributed to civilian deaths on his last assignment. Finding the killer offers a chance at redemption . . . if he can stay alive long enough to prove it isn’t him.
Shivers rippled over Monica Halsey’s naked skin as she peered into the steel mirror and splashed water on her face.
Steel Fear by Brandon Webb and John David Mann
I DNF’d this book the first time I read it. I stopped reading at around 40%. The reason was pretty simple; I wasn’t a fan of how slow the book was. Fast forward to a couple of months ago. I decided to go through my NetGalley Will Not Give Feedback section and read/review all the books on that shelf. I am a little anal with keeping my NetGalley ratio on the higher side of 90. And since Steel Fear was one of those books, I decided it would be one of the first ones I read/review.
Steel Fear is a military mystery/thriller set on the USS Abraham Lincoln. Finn is a Navy Seal sniper who is being sent home for a debriefing after a raid goes wrong. With his memory of the events compromised, Finn settles for the voyage back. But soon, he is embroiled in a mystery when several seamen (and women) are found murdered in various areas of the ship. With the ship on lockdown and people beginning to think he is the murderer, Finn decides to take matters into his own hands and solve the murders. But with the body count piling up, can Finn stay one step ahead of the MPs and solve the murders? Or is he the one they are looking for?
Finn’s character was interesting to read. He was a very unlikely Navy Seal. He wasn’t tall, jacked up, or loud. Instead, he was average height, had an average body build, and was very quiet. He was so quiet that people often forgot he was there. What intrigued me the most about Finn was that he was an enigma to everyone, including the ship’s captain. No one knew why he was on board or where he was going. The authors chose to reveal almost all of Finn’s background slowly. His childhood, the horrific thing that happened, and what happened to his team were slowly revealed. And the more that was revealed, the more I needed to know.
As I mentioned in the first paragraph, this book was a DNF for me because of how slow it was. And, yes, it was still slow. But with the second reread, I noticed that the authors were weaving the story with several of the secondary characters. About halfway through the book, the pacing does pick up, and my interest in the plotline picks up with it. By the last chapters of the book, I was utterly hooked. It was more about the serial killer/murders than the ship.
The mystery angle of the book was well written. While I figured that Finn didn’t do it, I was at a loss for who it was. So when the serial killer was revealed, I was shocked. The authors did keep what happened to Finn on his last mission to the bare facts and what Finn remembered. So, there was nothing new was learned there.
The suspense angle of the book was as well written as the mystery angle. I was glued to the book, wanting to know who it was. I couldn’t hit my Kindle button fast enough.
This is a military book, and with it comes military jargon and talk. I wasn’t very interested in that and did skim over some parts of it. But, I did find it fascinating that the authors chose to highlight how women were treated in the Navy (and military). Let’s say that the women in this book weren’t treated very nicely by their COs. It goes with everything I have heard and seen on the news (rapes, coverups,etc.).
The end of Steel Fear was interesting. The authors were able to wrap up the serial killer/murders plotline in a way that I liked. I felt that person got what was coming to them. But I also liked where the author took Finn’s story. There was also enough left with his story for book 2 (which I will read).
I would recommend Steel Fear to anyone over 21. There is no sex. But there is strong language and graphic violence.
If you enjoyed reading Steel Fear, you will enjoy these books:
What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next?
Miss R had a better week at school. Her teacher only called me once, and that was to let me know that she was begging to go home (which I said no to because she wasn’t sick). She wasn’t my biggest fan for a couple of days but got over it.
Wires were crossed last week. What do I mean by that? Well, I pick up a little boy from school and drop him off at his mother’s work Monday-Thursday. I don’t mind doing this because a) I have known her for over 6 years (Miss R and this boy played t-ball together), and b) I am not going out of my way to drop him off. On Thursday, she never texted me to let me know her husband was picking him up. So, I grabbed him and ignored the horn blaring behind me (people are very aggressive to others waiting in the pickup line. It’s an issue). The secretary, who was directing traffic, made me stop and told me that his dad was behind me. I told her that I would pull over at the first safe area, which was beside the school, in the bus lane. Thankfully his dad was super nice and kept apologizing to me. He also said I would hear from him if he picked up his son other than Friday. I was so embarrassed. BK told me I shouldn’t be and was doing what I was supposed to. That the boy’s mother was to blame for not telling me.
Miss R has gotten her groove back with riding. She finally cantered last week, and if you all could see the look on her face!! Her instructor was very excited and told me she hoped to keep this up. I told her that I do too.
I don’t know if I mentioned this, but Miss B is on her high school’s prom committee (along with several of her friends). She is very excited about prom (it is a combined junior/senior prom). They are also having a winter dance but no homecoming (this school isn’t included in that for some reason).
I am still ahead with reading. I have dipped into the first couple of books on my NetGalley list that I have mentioned. So far, I knocked two off (go me!!). I am hoping to get those reviews posted fairly soon.
Loki and Vinnie had their vet appointments on Monday. Loki weighs a lot less than I thought (10lbs). Both are in perfect health!!
So that’s the essential things for this past week. How was your week?
As always, let me know if you have read or are planning to read any of these books!!
She assigns each Tuesday a topic and then posts her top ten list that fits that topic. You’re welcome to join her and create your list of top ten (or 2, 5, 20, etc.). Feel free to put a unique spin on the topic to make it work for you! Please link to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own post so that others know where to find more information.
I have a lot of books on my TBR at the moment and keep adding more each day. But these books that I am going to showcase here are books I will be reading this fall. Some you might see reviews for, some you might not. Some might be books sitting on my TBR shelf, some might be author/publisher request book reviews, and others might be books I took off my NetGalley Will Not Give Feedback page. But, I plan to read all of these books this fall (and I will let you guys know under which category these books fall).
As always, let me know if you have read any of these books and what you have thought of them!!
1. Nightmares & Daydreams by Dominic J. Anton (author request)
2. The Lost Son by Aidan Lucid (Author Request)
3. The Man without Shelter by Indrajit Garai (author request)
4. Fleshed Out by Rob Ulitski (author request)
5. The Genesis of Evangeline by Rachel Jonas (from TBR pile)
6. Dirty Blue by N.E. Henderson (from TBR pile)
7. Big Summer by Jennifer Weiner (NetGalley Will Not Get Feedback)
8. Steel Fear by Brandon Webb and John David Mann (NetGalley Will Not Give Feedback)
9 Locklands by Robert Jackson Bennett (NetGalley Will Not Give Feedback)
10. The Last Huntress by Lenore Borja (Publisher Request)
It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? a place to meet up and share what you have been, and are about to be reading over the week. It’s a great post to organize yourself. It’s an opportunity to visit and comment and er… add to your groaning TBR pile! So welcome in everyone. This meme started on J Kaye’s blog and then was hosted by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at The Book Date.
Jen Vincent, Teach Mentor Texts, and Kellee of Unleashing Readers decided to give It’s Monday! a kidlit focus. If you read and review books in children’s literature – picture books, chapter books, middle grade novels, young adult novels or anything in those genres – join them.
Happy Monday (well, as happy as a Monday can be…lol) everyone and I hope you all had a great weekend!!
I decided to take a small break from doing my weekly posts last week. I had two reasons. One was that I got busy. The other reason, I needed to catch up on my TBR list and writing reviews.
Miss B had her Drivers Ed class last week. She went Monday-Thursday, 9-5. She passed the class. Now, we are waiting for them to contact me to set up her 6 hours of driving. Then after that, she goes for her level one license (aka learners permit). In order to get her level two (or provisional license), she needs to drive 60 hours and hold the permit for a year. So, she will be 17 by the time she will be able to drive by herself.
What also kept me from posting last week is that we rescued a kitten. My neighbor had called me and said that they had found a young kitten who wasn’t doing well. By the time I got home, he had let it back out. I told BK and the kids that they could look the next day (they looked but he was gone). They found him on Saturday and we took him in. He was in really bad shape. He had zero body fat, you could feel his ribs, spine, hip, and butt bones. He slept the first two days and was super weak. To be honest, I thought we had brought him in to die, that’s how bad he was. But, he improved. He gained weight and is acting like a crazy kitten. His name is Jesper (bonus points if you know what character he is named after). I believe he was an owner dump. He had been handled and knew how to use a litter box. Add on to that, he had zero fleas and look like he had been dewormed (no worms).
I was in a bit of a reading slump (which also factors into me not posting last week). But, I got myself out and finished 5 books between Thursday and Sunday. I started reading at night again and for a couple of hours in the afternoon.
I found out that my all-time favorite TV show is on HBO Maxx, Cold Case. So, guess what I am going to start binging when BK is away on business!!
This week for suppers I am making breaded pork chops, crockpot sweet and sour short ribs, and pork chops/apples/stuffing. I know, a lot of pork chops. But, in my defense, I had taken some out to defrost, then BK went and bought a pork loin and cut that into pork chops.
What are you currently reading? What did you recently finish reading? What do you think you’ll read next?
What I Recently Finished Reading:
I loved this book!! Elya was a very sympathetic character. She had years of abuse to get over and needed the time to come to terms that Charming loved her. And the ending of the book was perfect!!
What I am currently reading:
So far I like this book. The mystery is good (who killed Maggie’s ex-flame fiancee) and I like that it is set against WW2. But, this is book 10 in a series and I worry that I might get lost (if the books have to be read in order). So, we’ll see.
What books I think I’ll read next:
I am putting the books in the order I am reading them. They are all ARCs and I will reading the indie authors books first, then the books by major publishers. There are a couple that I am looking forward to read. They are What We Devour and The Search for Synergy.