The Wingman

Fiction - Thriller - Political
298 Pages
Reviewed on 12/21/2017
Buy on Amazon

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    Book Review

Reviewed by Neil A White for Readers' Favorite

The second in a series of Jack Sharpe novels, The Wingman begins with David Pepper’s protagonist in the midst of moderating an election-season debate. Sharpe, a wily investigative reporter, has a hunch – something that just doesn’t sit well - about a young congressman running for president. This sixth sense leads his team down many a winding and dark rabbit hole in discovering the truth about the Iraqi war veteran. And of the forces at play in today’s politics. Is the congressman’s illustrious war record all that he claims it is? Is there something sinister behind the deaths of his fellow platoon mates? And what of the mysterious Super-PAC running hyper-negative ads against his closest rivals for the presidential nomination?

The Wingman by David Pepper is a tense political thriller, and a page-turner of the highest order. Rarely do I finish a novel in one sitting, but this one had my full attention from beginning to surprising end. Toss in a shady law firm and an over-the-top weapons contractor, and you have all the ingredients to set the stage for a wild ride. And just when you think you have the answers, David Pepper delivers with another twist – or three - that will have you nodding your head and smiling in appreciation at his ingenuity. The Wingman is equal parts indictment of the current political climate in the United States, a eulogy for the treatment of returning veterans, and a harbinger of a military industrial complex run amok. And all wrapped up in a tautly written thriller masterfully rendered in David Pepper’s capable hands.

Rabia Tanveer

The Wingman by David Pepper is the story of a reporter who climbed from the bottom to the top. Jack Sharpe is an intelligent reporter who worked hard to get where he is today. Unafraid and driven to bring the truth to the people, Jack likes his old-school, hands-on approach more than just letting his team do all the work while he delivers the top story to the people. He investigates political scandals that many other people would miss, but he relies on his sharp eyes and even sharper mind to uncover the truth.

When he gets wind of a scandal pertaining to a young presidential hopeful, he knows that there is more to the story than is revealed. The deeper he delves into the drama, the stranger and more dangerous the present becomes. From manipulating the presidential primaries to the steady flow of black money in the system, Jack makes one troubling discovery after another. No one is safe, especially Jack and his team. He needs to do something quickly before it is too late. As more people turn up dead, Jack’s own reputation and his life are in danger. Can he do something about it? Even if he uncovers the truth, will he have a chance to reveal it to the world?

This is an action-packed, fast-paced novel that I thoroughly enjoyed. I loved Jack, but more than that, I loved his tenacity. He appeared to be pigheaded at times, but that suited his character. I enjoyed his dialogues the most! They were witty, charming, and fitted his character really well. The mystery and suspense were on point; the story did not slow down even once! The flow was amazing and kept me reading, turning the pages non-stop. I simply loved everything about this novel. It is brilliant!

Romuald Dzemo

The Wingman by David Pepper is an impassioned political thriller with powerful themes and great characters. Meet seasoned reporter Jack Sharpe, on his path to uncovering one of the greatest scandals in the US presidential primaries. The story follows an unusual presidential candidate on his rise to fame, a decorated veteran and congressman. Everything looks so normal and many people are rooting for the candidate, but Jack’s gut feeling tells him differently. So he begins to do what he does best — digging. And this leads him into a very dangerous path designed to rig the elections. Can he unveil the truth without being harmed and can he do this in time to avoid the greatest scandal in the presidential primaries?

Well-researched and beautifully crafted, The Wingman is a thrilling read, a story that brilliantly depicts the political atmosphere leading up to the primaries. Readers will love the author’s way of dealing with political themes, coming across as someone who perfectly understands America’s political culture. The novel also unveils the loopholes in the electoral and campaign laws. The characters are superbly conceived and developed to appear like people in real life. The narrative voice is strong and the pacing is fast, crafted to keep the reader moving from one page to the next gripping page. There is a lot for readers to enjoy in this thriller, including the awesome characters, the great storytelling, the strong political setting, and the conflict. David Pepper is a master storyteller and he has the secret of keeping readers engaged for many long hours.

Arya Fomonyuy

The Wingman by David Pepper takes readers on a rollicking ride to places with dirty games happening in the political arena during elections. Follow the story of a distinguished journalist as he takes a look at the Presidential Primaries and a political scandal that could rock the nation. When a decorated veteran and young congressman becomes the “man of the people,” the most favored candidate for the Presidency, Jack Sharpe feels it could be too good to be true, so he starts investigating what has been the secret to this success on the political platform. But what starts out as mere curiosity quickly pulls him into the dark and dirty corridors of corruption, bad money, and a well-orchestrated conspiracy. The question is, can he get to the bottom of this, working alone, and can he bring the truth to light without being brutally silenced?

With characters that resonate as realistic and a point of view that allows readers to quickly connect with the characters and to clearly visualize the scenes, David Pepper deeply explores his characters and there is no way the reader can escape the spell of the narrative. Jack Sharpe is a relentless man who will unearth everything to get to the bottom of a story. This comes with a lot of danger, so when readers meet Jack, they quickly become interested in him, but this interest turns into a sense of worry. They begin to care about what could happen to him and the author uses this to create a strong sense of suspense. The Wingman features an excellent writing style and I was utterly fascinated by the wonderful dialogues. Apart from the compelling and well-explored characters, readers are introduced to plot intricacies that make this book an enjoyable read. There are the kinds of surprises readers long for and characters they will remember long after the last page is turned.

Edith Wairimu

As an executive producer, Jack is in charge of a new investigations bureau with reporters and researchers at his disposal, whose aim is to uncover impropriety surrounding the nation’s political arena. Formerly a political reporter with Youngstown Vindicator, Jack is catapulted into his new position after his role in the Abacus scandal. It is in this new setting that he encounters Congressman Bravo. At the debate, Jack notices something striking, something distinctive. Will Jack follow his instincts and dig deeper? Is Congressman Bravo the war hero he claims to be? And who is behind the vicious ads that have seen many influential politicians pack and leave the political scene? The Wingman by David Pepper is an exceptional political thriller that chronicles the life of Jack Sharpe as he works to uncover some of the deepest levels of corruption in a country that is supposedly ruled by democracy.

It is no secret that David Pepper is an outstanding author. From the interesting twists, the riveting action, and the ingenious characters that he brilliantly builds, The Wingman ultimately is a worthwhile read. As I turned from page to page, I was glued to the story line as it unfolded into different twists and turns away from my initial expectations. My inability to predict outcomes and my constant guesswork of how everything would end really stood out for me as I read The Wingman. What starts as a simple lead becomes a full-blown scandal with consequent danger surrounding different key characters. The book is well-written, interesting and, above all, suspenseful, and is therefore recommended to any reader, not just fans of political thrillers.