The Chameleon

A Jake Palmer Novel

Fiction - Thriller - Terrorist
358 Pages
Reviewed on 09/08/2021
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Lex Allen for Readers' Favorite

Jake Palmer - investigative consultant and former US Navy SEAL - has signed on as a contractor with a top-secret US Joint Special Operations Command team in Islamabad, Pakistan. Palmer is teamed up with Fiona Collin, an operative he's worked with in the past and a woman he may still love. The pair is set to investigate a Pakistani nuclear launch in a major dispute over the Kashmir region. The situation grows ever tenser with the discovery of a shadowy figure, the Chameleon, who may intend to divert a nuclear warhead to the West when the war begins. The nuclear clock has moved from one minute to midnight, and Palmer and Fiona must risk everything to stop what would be the world's first act of nuclear terrorism.

Though fourth in the Jake Palmer series, The Chameleon is my first read from author Ron McManus, and I guarantee it won't be my last. Verisimilitude, a sense of reality, is a vital key for my determination in rating any book I read for review, and Ron McManus clearly understands the art of making a fictional story real. The Chameleon story rocks with reality from the action scenes to the in-depth knowledge of covert military action, counterintelligence operations, government foreign policies, institutional insider information, and finally, but most assuredly not the least, characters that are as real as any living person you'll ever meet. Setting the story in the middle of the years-long, real-life saber-rattling between India and Pakistan over Kashmir is another example of McManus' understanding and skills incorporating that all-important authenticity. Ron McManus has either worked in intelligence or covert military organization, or he's done some phenomenal research. Regardless of which it is, I am confident he has produced a fast-paced, action/adventure thriller that will ultimately give every international top ten bestselling thrillers a run for its money!

Tom Gauthier

The Chameleon is a work of thriller fiction by Ron McManus. India is mobilizing on Pakistan’s border, threatening to escalate the long-simmering dispute over control of the region of Kashmir. Pakistan reacts by activating a deployment of its tactical nuclear weapons arsenal in preparation for war with India. Fears over the security of Pakistan’s weapons grow as reports surface that a shadowy figure, the Chameleon, will attempt to steal a nuclear warhead during the deployment. Jake Palmer is in Islamabad, Pakistan, operating for a top-secret US Joint Special Operations Command team. Palmer and his JSOC partner, Alona Green, are assigned to find a suspected mole in their ranks that is feeding information to Pakistani intelligence. Pakistan’s threatened deployment of its nuclear weapon arsenal against India raises the urgency to frantic levels. The countdown has begun to prevent the world’s first act of nuclear terrorism as Palmer and Green risk life and limb to uncover the Chameleon and thwart his plans.

Ron McManus delivers an international action and adventure thriller, masterfully researched and crafted for an exhilarating ride. His ongoing character from previous award-winning works, Jake Palmer, guides us through a compelling world of espionage and danger. Managing to weave a love story and personal conflict into the heart-stopping action, McManus proves himself a master of the genre. Jake Palmer and Alona Green are carried along in brilliantly detailed situations with no clouding of the overarching plot. Step by step, the drama intensifies with every chapter, and the reader appreciates the short chapters for a respite and chance to draw a breath. This is the hallmark of a brilliant reading experience. The Chameleon is a book you want to place high on your list of thrillers and suspense experiences. I stand in awe of Ron McManus's writing and I thank him for making my reading of The Chameleon a pure pleasure.

Rabia Tanveer

The Chameleon is the second novel in the Jake Palmer series by Ron McManus. Jake Palmer used to be a US Navy SEAL, but now he works for the US Joint Special Operations Command or JSOC. Nothing surprised Jake anymore, but when he was told that his next assignment was in Islamabad, Pakistan Jake was speechless. Jake would be joined by his new partner Alona Green to do the impossible. As Pakistan and India were gearing up to start a war over the Kashmir dispute, there was a threat of a nuclear weapon being used in the chaos. However, the biggest worry for Jake came in the form of a mysterious man called the Chameleon. The Chameleon wanted to use the nuclear warhead as a terrorist weapon and shoot it somewhere else to do more damage. Jake was in a race against time to find out who the Chameleon was and stop him before he unleashed a terrible weapon.

The Chameleon is packed with action and mystery. Ron McManus did a good job with Jake’s character. Jake was still the stoic, simple yet very jaded man who had seen far too much in his life. Jake wanted to give one hundred percent to the job, but he had no idea things would escalate that quickly. The mystery behind the Chameleon was handled incredibly well, and the author made sure to keep his identity hidden until the very last moment. Alona’s character was truly one of my favorites. She was smart, a little bit vulnerable at times, but she was a fighter. The dialogues between her and Jake were very interesting, but nothing could have prepared me for her ending dialogues with Aaliyah. Aaliyah's character had potential, and I hope the author brings her into future novels as well. Of course, the descriptions and narrative were perfect for the story. I have high expectations from Ron McManus, and he always delivers!