The Gryphon Heist – James R. Hannibal – Talia Inger #1 – Revell – Published 3 September 2019




Talia Inger is a rookie CIA case officer assigned not to the Moscow desk as she had hoped but to the forgotten backwaters of Eastern Europe–a department only known as “Other.” When she is tasked with helping a young, charming Moldovan executive secure his designs for a revolutionary defense technology, she figures she’ll be back in DC within a few days. But that’s before she knows where the designs are stored–and who’s after them. With her shady civilian partner, Adam Tyler, Talia takes a deep dive into a world where only criminal minds and unlikely strategies will keep the Gryphon, a high-altitude data vault, hovering in the mesosphere.

Even Tyler is more than he seems, and Talia begins to wonder: Is he helping her? Or using her access to CIA resources to pull off an epic heist for his own dark purposes?

My thoughts

You can tell Gryphon Heist is set to be a tense thriller from the very first page. From the finishing touches of CIA training to undercover ops, double crosses, big reveals and enough high-action, crazy scenes to classify for a big-budget Hollywood film, Gryphon Heist is sure to please action and thriller fans.

Natalia Inger is just about to complete her CIA training when she fails the last practical. So, when her mentor offers her one last chance to join the Agency, Talia accepts, even if it means she is placed in Eastern European Other division – the placement furthermost from her ideal goal of Moscow. Her first assignment appears to be a glorified rent-a-cop situation until word comes of a high-stakes heist to steal world destructive technology. Talia and a carefully selected team will have to steal it first to secure her country’s safety.

Gryphon Heist is accurately marketed as Ocean’s Eleven meets Mission Impossible. It has all the high-stakes action scenes that seem totally outside the realms of possibility, and a team of criminals – from con women to chemists who excel in bomb making – who must work together. The combination of complex schemes and dangerous stunts makes Gryphon Heist an exciting read.

The one problem I had with this book was the main character. I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to find her annoying as she swings from an uptight goody two shoes to an insufferable know it all and then back to someone who seems so incompetent it is hard to believe she made it through the CIA training. Then I was doubting myself – maybe that’s exactly how I was to view her to create loopholes in the story. Yet all it seemed to do was make me trust the other characters and continue to doubt Talia’s judgement so it was a little hard to know if she is a fool or a genius. However, she is just beginning her CIA career — and this series — so it will be interesting to see how she develops in subsequent books.

Gryphon Heist is published as a Christian novel. There are mentions of faith through the book and one scene that centres around Talia’s return to faith in God and the importance of forgiveness.

Fans of action movies and suspense novels alike are sure to enjoy this first book in what is set to be an exciting series.

The publishers provided an advanced readers copy of this book for reviewing purposes. All opinions are my own.

More information

Category: Adult fiction

Genre: Christian – Suspense.

Themes: Heists, CIA, undercover work, teamwork, robbery, technology.

Advisory: References to assassinations and violence.

Published: 3 September 2019 by Revell.

Format: Hardcover, paperback, ebook. 400 pages.

ISBN: 9780800737139

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