Man of Honor, an Explosive Page-Turner by Chris Malburg

The Bottom Line: A fast-paced page-turner that dwells in the murky world of hackers, cyber warfare and government intelligence.

Li Yong has been training with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA) since childhood. He has finally reached the apex of his professional life: commanding cyber warfare Unit 61398. On the other side of the Pacific are ex-FBI agent Jackson Schilling and his wife, Helen. Both sides live a world where planes fall from the sky with a few keystrokes, and just about everyone lives in fear.

The latest in author Chris Malburg’s Enforcement Division series pits Yong and the Schillings in a race against time. Both sides are engaged in the timeless personal battle of duty versus personal belief. There’s little in the way of clear-cut right versus wrong, and all have grown accustomed to the shades of grey that provide operational traction. For readers, it’s a compelling and fully believable world.

Malburg is hardly afraid to tackle big themes, which he does here with great success. What’s the definition of terrorism? Where’s the line between self-defense, a provocation and an escalation that could cause the next world war?

A truly cinematic writer, Malburg handles the far-flung locations with aplomb, painting them with the eye of a movie director, though Michael Bay fans may have to look for explosions elsewhere. Readers looking for an intriguing romp, however, will certainly be pleased with Man of Honor.

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