Sunday, December 18, 2011

Blood Brothers by E. Thomas Behr

In 1805 in the war-ravaged Mediterranean, Henry Doyle, a soldier of fortune and professional killer arrives at a squalid tavern in the roughest section of Malta for a meeting with a man he should hate.
His appointment: William Eaton, an American army officer, Indian fighter, and secret agent for Thomas Jefferson. Eaton is plotting a daring venture: the invasion of Tripoli to liberate three hundred Americans held hostage by the Pasha of Tripoli, place a pro-American ruler on Tripoli’s throne, and bring freedom to a Muslim country that has known only tyranny.
Eaton has money to spend for a scout to lead a rag tag invading army of Arabs, Eurpean mercenaries, and seven U.S. marines across 500 miles of merciless desert to attack an enemy force ten times their size.
Raised by the Mohawk Indians in 1770’s, Doyle’s memories of the destruction of his people by the American army during the Revolution are still painful after twenty five years and bitter. But in spite of his feelings, Doyle accepts the assignment.
Eaton’s mission throws together two unlikely allies: Doyle and the half-brother he never knew he had, Peter Kirkpatrick, the young, brashly confident captain of the U.S.S. Eagle.
When he joins Eaton’s mission, Kirkpatrick plunges into an unfamiliar, unforgiving world that will test his – and America’s character as a nation – to the breaking point. For Doyle, the question becomes: do I help my brother – or let him die? 
“Blood Brothers” is the story of Henry Doyle as much as it’s the tale of the U.S.’s actions in Tripoli. The book’s first quarter is weighted with Doyle’s history and the pace of the book suffers because of it. Also, there is a legion of characters with few identifiers to help us love or hate them. However, for the reader who sticks with the story, the military engagements are realistic and the multiple settings of America, Malta, and Turkey engage the senses.

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