Holed up in a frigid New York City basement lair, Ben Blackshaw gets a coded distress call from his former commanding officer. The new mission takes Blackshaw on an international manhunt for a mysterious serial sniper whose latest victim is a rising Latin pop star.
To launch the mission, Blackshaw is secretly flown across the country in an unmanned drone. When the UAV’s encrypted guidance system is hacked by a sleeper cell of terrorists, the plane crashes, delivering Blackshaw into the hands of gunmen intent on killing him. He barely survives this opening skirmish, only to come under fire on a Los Angeles rooftop from the rogue sniper. His former CO, and two innocent bystanders are cut down in the barrage of bullets.
Racked with grief, driven by guilt, Blackshaw reconnects with his old friend, Knocker Ellis Hogan, and together they try to lead the murderer away from populated areas before making the kill. The chase leapfrogs from the high Chilean desert to the icy wastes of northern Canada. At every turn, the killer slips away from their traps like a ghost.
Along the way, Blackshaw learns that the sniper’s deadly work is directed from the highest offices of the United States Government, and is part of a larger conspiracy to ignite a genocidal war-for-profit in South America.
With Ellis gravely wounded, Blackshaw makes a final stand on a wrecked ship in the Chesapeake Bay, only to discover that the killer’s identity could make completing the mission next to impossible.
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Praise for Nitro Express
- Cyrus Webb, Host of Conversations LIVE, Editor-In-Chief of Conversations Magazine
Ben Blackshaw is back and at the top of his game in Nitro Express, the latest offering from author Robert Whitehill. The action is fast-paced, the characters engaging and the storyline keeps you turning the pages. If you thought lightning couldn’t strike twice for an author, then this book proves you wrong. Whitehill brings his literary best with Nitro Express.
- Michael Lipoma, Producer, HatLine Productions
If you’ve ridden along with Ben Blackshaw’s adventures in Deadrise, strap yourself in to binge-read Nitro Express! From drones to the latest lethal tech, Robert Blake Whitehill pits Blackshaw against a foe worthy of his unique skill set. Whitehill’s latest page-burner is visceral and visual, and we at HatLine Productions couldn’t be more delighted to help Ben Blackshaw assume his rightful place alongside Jason Bourne and James Bond!
- Richard Marek, Author, Works of Genius
A nifty thriller. Intricately plotted and excellently paced.
- Brinda Glatczak, Editor in Chief, WiLoveBooks.com
Nitro Express is an exciting, fast-paced thrill-ride even better than the first. I couldn’t read fast enough, and was racing through the pages to reach the conclusion, which blew me away. Fans of action, suspense, speed, and big guns will not want to miss this.
- Kirsten Lagatree, Author, Feng Shui: Arranging your Home to Change Your Life
Ben is back! Nitro Express is a ride you don’t want to miss! Impossible to predict. Impossible to put down. Whitehill’s prose is profound and glitzy all at once. You will want to live in this world a little longer than the pages permit!
- Cindy Swabsin
Nitro Express explodes on impact! It draws you in right from the beginning and takes you on an exciting thrill ride whether it be a drone strike, or shots from a far-away sniper. Whitehill sets the stage, then throws the unexpected at you. Like Deadrise before, Nitro Express delivers excitement, great characters and has you guessing right up until the end. Mission accomplished Mr. Whitehill.
- Walt Whitehill, The Ice Man
An absolutely hair-raising, on the edge of your seat, riveting novel. If you thought Deadrise was a home-run, then you will find that Nitro Express is a Grand Slam. Robert has a way of taking you completely by surprise with his endings. Loved it all.
- Diane Wilder
Notch another hit for Whitehill, Nitro Express is an often light-hearted, always gut-splattered dance with death that finds Ben Blackshaw partnered with a new nemesis. Nitro Express’s bloody misdirections are built upon eloquent riffs on ballistics, planes, jihadists, genetic hang fires, and political abuse. The bad guys and gals who try to put the “dick” in “Blus ist dicker als Wasser,” get theirs in the end.
- Naomi Dschaak
Author Robert Blake Whitehill has hit gold again, in his second installment of the Ben Blackshaw series. In Nitro Express, Blackshaw traverses the world, and explores the good, bad, and apathetic human psyche, in this operative-laden espionage thriller. He opens windows of what could be happening right here and now in a socio-politically charged atmosphere. Make no mistake, this high-action page-turner will keep you riveted to the very end.
- Adam Gubar
Fast and engrossing, Nitro Express delivers on the legacy of Mr. Whitehill’s first novel, Deadrise, and builds on the growing bona fides of reluctant protagonist Ben Blackshaw. Plot-twists and danger abound as Ben Blackshaw dodges fire from all directions, never quite knowing who to trust, as he tries feverishly to extricate himself from the back-dealing of ruthless power brokers. Nitro Express draws you in with all the intrigue of classic Cold War spycraft. The world that Mr. Whitehill has created once again teems with complexities of multinational politics, rogue militants, and government agencies fraught with the morally compromised. Whitehill regales his readers with over-the-top characters constructed like a multi-tiered cake, rich with distinctive language and piled high with hidden motives and machinations. The familiar characters of Blackshaw and his compatriots are joined by a chorus of new allies and enemies, and leave the reader to wonder just how much difference exists between them.
- John Francone
Robert, thanks for another exciting thrill ride of an adventure with Ben Blackshaw. I really enjoyed reading your new book. So much so that I could not put it down, and finished it in 4 hours. For me to finish a book that fast is epic; you had me hook, line and sinker. I even passed on going to the movies with my wife to finish it! Thanks again and more importantly what’s next for Ben? I can’t wait!
- Gene Pitts, Editor in Chief, AudiophileVoice.com
HE’S BACK! Ben Blackshaw has returned – not from the dead, where his previous adventure, Deadrise, left him, but from a hidden, underground forge where he toiled to fulfill an honor-bound agreement to friends. It’s nearly Wagner’s niebelungen turning gold into dollars. On the strength of a nicely coded and placed “request,” Ben emerges in Nitro Express to continue the chase started in Deadrise, the previous Ben Blackshaw chronicle. This one is another relentless chase-down, and it’s not too much to say it’s like those of Jason Bourne, Robert Ludlum’s well-known spy-hero. The chase’s cadence increases start to finish, a Ludlum method which will keep your attention as it did mine. In the reserved manner of James Bond, Ben’s track takes him to Tinsel-Town in LaLa-Land, literally out of this world, into something like a real-life version of Dante’s inferno though on a mountaintop, brushes with cutting¬-edge information technology which produce madness rather than a paradigm-shifting product. Along the edge of Ben’s walk are clearly drafted visions of knives, guns, cars, planes, boats, pop-music culture, and federal government intrigue nastier than the NSA spook-games Mr. Snowden recently showed the world.
All of which is to say that Nitro Express, the new spy-thriller from Robert Blake Whitehill, is well-written, well-crafted, and offers plenty to grab fans of spy capers. It is more in the vein of Tom Clancy than Ludlum, since there is more reliance on unusual ordinance to carry the plot along, though the plot has plenty of twists and surprises to keep you guessing. That’s good by me and is the technique Conan Doyle uses with his Sherlock Holmes’ stories. Other good things are the detailing of espionage or beat-cop tradecraft and the setting of mood and place; reminds me of Le Carre’s Spy Who Came in from the Cold. I will not say that espionage thrillers are my favorite genre, because there are so many of them that are simply poorly written. This cream ought to rise; have a sip.
But I am eager for Whitehill’s next Blackshaw outing, and urge him to “write faster!” as I did after I finished Deadrise. In the interests of at least partial disclosure, I have known Whitehill, not well, but warmly for some years now, as we both toil in “word production factories.” This ought not disqualify my “read this soon!” and instead let it be a seen as a recommendation from another pro.