The First Hostage by Joel C. Rosenberg


Book reviews are subjective. I tend to rate books not according to how “perfect” they are, seem to be, or are said to be in general but rather to how perfect they are to me. Tyndale House provided me with a complimentary copy of this book for an honest review.

The First Hostage by Joel C. Rosenberg

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

(Click the title to find the book description/blurb.)

After scrambling for his life from a deadly scene in Jordan, New York Times journalist J.B. Collins is caught up in a mission to save the now missing U.S. president in The First Hostage by author Joel C. Rosenberg.

I stepped into the action of this high-stakes thriller without any knowledge of what happened in the novel that precedes it, but the story didn’t leave me feeling lost, and by a quarter of the way through, I was engrossed.

The first-person narration is rather conversational, which I hadn’t expected. The hero addresses the reader as “you” here and there, and his style keeps his story down to earth. I couldn’t help but to feel claustrophobic and unnerved by heights along with him, and particular disturbing and devastating scenes he comes across aren’t merely sensational, when seen through his eyes. Instead, the devastation can’t help but to pull on one’s compassion. Then, the story ends with enough of a conclusion to let you breathe (no jarring cliffhangers) but enough of an opening to leave you in anticipation for more.

The genre is still fairly new territory for me, but I’ve little doubt that this novel has much that will keep other thriller fans on the edge of their seats–or on their toes, as I was.


Here’s my review of the next J.B. Collins novel, Without Warning.

Without Warning


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