Render Harmless

Fiction - Military
456 Pages
Reviewed on 03/14/2021
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Romuald Dzemo for Readers' Favorite

Render Harmless: A Josh Haman Novel by Marc Liebman will appeal to fans of military and terrorist thrillers. In West Germany, a mysterious group known as the Red hand is targeting Americans, British, and German citizens with car bombs. But there is more: Jews are being killed by the Germans, and the massacres look much like the handiwork of former Nazis. Josh Haman and an elite SEAL team are tasked to find the members of the Red Hand and to make them harmless by neutralizing them. The US government and its allies rely on Josh Haman and Marty Cabot with their team. But can they locate members of this elusive group, complete the mission and get out unscathed? The odds are stacked against them as the action takes center stage.

This is a novel with strong political and historical hints. Marc Liebman has taken the painful historical experience of the Holocaust and the fanaticism of the Nazis who want to create a Fourth Reich and transformed these themes into a compelling narrative with strong plot points and well-developed characters. I liked the fact that his characters are genuinely flawed. For instance, Marty is facing a painful separation from Ma’i, the love of his life. The author builds on the flawed humanity of the characters, infusing the story with realism and making them likable. Render Harmless: A Josh Haman Novel is written in gorgeous prose and I loved both the timely paragraph breaks and the well-crafted dialogues. Such are elements that make for an enjoyable reading experience. Marc Liebman writes great settings, with vivid descriptions of locales and the cultural and historical elements. It is a fast-paced, exciting story for fans of the military, one that is packed with action and intriguing plot twists.

Rabia Tanveer

Render Harmless is the third book in the Josh Haman series by Marc Liebman. The trials and tribulations of Josh continue as he once again finds himself in the middle of another international crisis. Freedom comes at a cost and no one knows it better than Josh. Josh and Navy SEAL Marty Cabot are asked by the government to find out why people are dying in West Germany. A radical group called the Red Hand is active in West Germany and killing people with their bombs. Their targets seem to be Americans and British, which was why Josh becomes a part of the US team. They are meant to work with the British and Israeli team to figure out why people are being killed and what does the Red Hand get out of killing people in senseless massacres. But finding the Red Hand is like looking for a ghost. They are everywhere but just out of sight. Can Josh and his team find what they want? Can they neutralize the threat before it is too late?

Marty and Josh are my favorite duo. They mesh well together and work together as a team to get the job done. Marc Liebman gives just the right amount of information in the beginning to the readers to entice them and move the plot forward. Opening the story with action is the best way to introduce the plot, and I loved the opening scene. It had the right amount of action and suspense to grab my attention and make me want to read on. Josh’s character is always sharp, but it is even better in this novel. Maybe because he is in the thick of things and experiencing things first-hand, but his reactions are brilliant in this story. The pace moves along with Josh’s understanding and his development, something that I truly enjoyed. The narrative is perfect, the dialogues are crisp, and the author created an overall feeling of uncertainty. As always, a job well done.

Anne-Marie Reynolds

Render Harmless by Marc Liebman is the third Josh Haman story. A terrorist group, known as the Red Hand, is setting off car bombs across West Germany, wiping out American, Germans, and British citizens. Their manifesto is identical to Nazi propaganda and the West German government is facing its worst nightmare in political history. Thirty years after the end of the Holocaust and four years after the Munich Olympics massacre, Germans are once again trying to wipe out the Jews. Josh Haman and Marty Cabot are back on the case in a covert mission to find the members of the Red Hand and the East German Stasi and neutralize the threat – whatever it takes. Their instructions – render harmless.

Render Harmless by Marc Liebman is another cracking installment in the Josh Haman series and, having read the first two, I can only say that this series just keeps getting better. As always, we have an action-packed, fast-paced story that takes you on a roller-coaster, breath-taking journey, this time through the shadowy underworld of East Germany. This is another mixture of adventure and action mixed with historical fact and we learn even more about our two main characters. This is a story of good and evil, of people who put themselves above others for evil reasons and it’s a story that will send you hurtling straight back behind the Iron Curtain. Another great addition to the series and, although it probably could be read as a standalone, I would recommend reading it as part of the series.

K.C. Finn

Render Harmless is a work of fiction in the international military, historical, and action sub-genres, and was penned by author Marc Liebman. The work is intended for the adult reading audience and contains the use of moderate amounts of explicit language and some brief violence. In a change of pace from their adventures during the Vietnam War, we find ourselves returning to the dynamic duo of pilot Josh Haman and SEAL Team member Marty Cabot as they now engage in singling out a group called the Red Hand who are killing citizens in West Germany during the Cold War. What results is a whole new atmosphere for the heroic pair and a deeper understanding of the true nature of fear than ever before.

Author Marc Liebman surprised me with this one after so many cinematic adventures in the vistas of Vietnam, but I was even more engaged by the tensions and bleak tableaus drawn during this Cold War battle of wits. Things become darker and deeper for Marty and Josh even from the opening chapters of this immersive work, and the author displays a versatile talent for accurate research and military knowledge throughout another period of dangerous history. I felt deeply involved in the story throughout, and the clues fed about the Red Hand were never overdone and kept you guessing, right up until the startling and sharp conclusion. Overall, I would highly recommend Render Harmless to fans of existing titles in the series, cleverly crafted military mysteries, and Cold War fiction readers everywhere.