A Summer Storm

Escaping the Evil

Fiction - Thriller - Espionage
444 Pages
Reviewed on 04/05/2022
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Hello, fellow book lover. My name is Tony Knapp and I currently split time between Riverside, California, and Flagstaff, Arizona. A cabin in the forest is where I relax and find inspiration to write. Before moving into the world of writing I spent 33 years as an educator in California. I taught American History and also served as a middle school teacher. That is a challenging job! Later I joined the world of school administration, serving as an assistant principal and principal before moving to the district level as a Director before completing my career as an Assistant Superintendent. Along the way I earned a Master's Degree in National Security as my love for all things "politics" saw me venture into a world quite different from public education. I met some remarkable individuals whose primary passion was to serve their country and their God with honor and dignity. I wrote my first book, An Autumn Mist after I retired. It is a story about men and women who are willing to sacrifice all for family and country. A Summer Storm continues following Hawk McCullough, Lizzy Locke, and Ryan Fletcher in their struggle against The Dragon as they face tragedy and heartbreak for love of family and country.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Grant Leishman for Readers' Favorite

A Summer Storm: Escaping the Evil by Tony Knapp is a continuation of the story of covert operative Jason “Hawk” McCullough and his ongoing battle with the evil North Korean terrorist known as The Dragon. After a firefight with the Dragon’s men, when Jason and his dream woman Lizzie Locke saved the city from a terrorist attack, Jason was badly wounded and airlifted to hospital. His helicopter did not deliver him to the hospital, however, and when Jason finally awakens, he finds himself in the notorious North Korean internment camp known as Kwan-li-so 16. Back in the States, Lizzie and her fellow operatives, including FBI Agent Ryan Fletcher, are working desperately to discover where Jason and two other operatives are being held so they can launch a rescue mission but the Dragon’s fingers reach deep, even into the offices of Federal Law Enforcement. In the camp, Jason, tortured and stripped bare of all his humanity, struggles to survive, sustained only by the woman of his dreams and their shared vision of the “land called Honah Lee”. When Jason finds a “friend” in a North Korean officer, his plans of escape from the hellhole find purchase but can he trust this man, a nephew of the infamous Dragon himself. Hawk must decide if this is his and the two other Americans' only chance at escape. It could all be an elaborate trap but if they have any hope for their long-term survival, they must put all their faith in the Dragon’s nephew, Greg Ro.

A Summer Storm is a tense, exciting thriller that grips the reader from the beginning and takes them on an emotional rollercoaster that keeps them frantically turning pages to discover what happens next. Author Tony Knapp is clearly a master at building tension, suspense, and delivering exciting outcomes through his characters. Although this is part of a series, I can assure readers it is definitely not necessary to have read the preceding book to get total enjoyment from this story. It stands alone as an exciting spy/military thriller and the author does an exceptional job of filling in readers as to the backstory of the events portrayed in this novel. It is a substantial read that allows the author time to develop characters and imbue them with qualities readers will either love or hate, which is exactly what good writers seek to achieve. I particularly appreciated the author’s attempt to humanize, in some ways, the arch-villain, the Dragon. So often the villains in these thrillers are simply out-and-out evil and beyond understanding or redemption. The author does not pull any punches in his description of the horrors of the prison camp or the horrific human toll of firefights between combatants. This gives the entire narrative a powerful and realistic tone which is satisfying for readers. I am now invested in these characters and will certainly be keeping an eye out for the next installment which the author has promised. I enjoyed this book immensely and can highly recommend it.

Joshua Olokodana

In A Summer Storm by Tony Knapp, Kwan-li-so 16 and hell have the same meaning—unending torture. Three Americans: Jason McCullough, Adam Hernandez, and Trey Williams were kidnapped by Samuel Ro, a notorious crime lord, and hidden in Kwan-li-so 16, a North Korean prison camp. Seven months and several near-death experiences later, they were able to escape courtesy of Greg Ro, their kidnapper’s nephew. However, they had to navigate a fifty-six-kilometer journey to the coast through a forest crawling with North Korean military personnel. After using every trick in the book to elude their pursuers, they reached the coast and met the extraction team. But they were yet to overcome their biggest challenge. The Koreans came at their inflatable boats with fighter jets and quickly tore one boat to shreds. As the fighters lined up for another run, Jason and his friends resigned themselves to death for the umpteenth time.

A Summer Storm by Tony Knapp is an enthralling and high-octane story of espionage and survival. It vibrantly depicts law enforcement heroes who expose themselves to stop unscrupulous criminals. Charged with emotions, it is impossible to read this novel and not fear for the characters. I was constantly willing the protagonists, especially Lizzy, to be more cautious. Tony proved himself to be a suspense merchant, as he ended each scene in a way that makes you pant for more. Although the story portrays some grim circumstances, it was dotted with humor, making it a lively read. I also liked how Tony narrated the fight scenes. It was so detailed that it felt like watching a war film in slow motion. If you are looking for a gripping military novel that sounds real, then you should grab A Summer Storm by Tony Knapp.

Pikasho Deka

A Summer Storm: Escaping the Evil is the second installment in the Hawk McCullough Action Thriller series by Tony Knapp. It's been six months since Special Forces operative Jason "Hawk" McCullough, alongside the love of life, Elizabeth Locke, and now FBI Assistant Director Ryan Fletcher, teamed up to thwart the nefarious plans of the powerful Korean Dragon, Samuel Ro. Now, kidnapped and tortured in the brutal Kwan-li-so 16 gulag in North Korea, Hawk aches for the taste of freedom. Meanwhile, after an audacious attempt on his life, Ryan Fletcher is determined to sniff out the mole in his agency. While Lizzy works her way to rescue Hawk with an unsanctioned team, Hawk finds an unexpected ally in prison. But things are rarely ever simple, as Hawk and his friends soon discover the long reach of The Dragon's influence.

A swirling mix of suspense, reveals, and high-octane action sequences make A Summer Storm the perfect action thriller for lovers of the genre. Author Tony Knapp takes his time setting up the plot and the characters. But by the halfway point, the pace picks up significantly, and the narrative accelerates toward a soaring action-filled climax. Despite the plot-driven nature of the story, Knapp gives each of his characters distinct personalities and well-defined motives that make them compelling and easy to relate to. What impressed me most about the book was that, unlike most military action thrillers, multiple plot threads are running through Knapp's narrative, with a focus on a few key characters. If you love action-oriented thrillers, I suggest A Summer Storm.