Eagle Strike by Anthony Horowitz

(Cover picture courtesy of ESC-Reads.)

Sir Damian Cray: Millions adore him.  He is a philanthropist, peace activist, and the world’s most famous vintage pop star.  But still it’s not enough—not if he is to save the world.  Trouble is, only Alex Rider recognizes that it’s the world that needs saving from Sir Damian Cray.  Alex has seen his share of evil masterminds in the short time he’s been an agent at MI6.  But in the past, Alex has always had the backing of the government.  This time, he’s on his own.  Can one teenager convince the world that the most popular man on earth is a madman bent on destruction—before time runs out?

This is the fourth book in Anthony Horowitz’s Alex Rider series, so I’m not even going to comment on the fact that it’s a rip-off of James Bond.  If you’re already this far in the series, you obviously don’t care about the predictable plot.  But if you’re new to the series, you should read Stormbreaker first, to get an idea of what you’re in store for.

By this book, Alex is a bit less of a cardboard cutout than he was in the first few books, but that isn’t saying much.  He gets a little bit of character development here in Eagle Strike, but he is still only a two dimensional character.  As for Damian Cray, the villain, well, let’s just say that he will never make my list of good villains.  He is about as three dimensional as the villains in the early Bond films.

If you can ignore the characters, you will enjoy Eagle Strike because despite all my criticism, Anthony Horowitz is a good writer.  His descriptions are just the right length to be informative and still maintain the fast pacing.  There is also no denying that he has done his research, particularly about Air Force One.  The confident way he writes makes it seem like he has been to all of the exotic places his books are set in, which is highly unlikely.  Yet, his imagination combined with a huge amount of research is what sets his books apart from most action books.

I give this book 3/5 stars.

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  1. Devina

    I believe I’ve read the first three books, and all I ever wanted was to see Alex grow as a character. The actions scenes to me were awesome and that was what kept me reading, but we hardly actually hear Alex’s thoughts even though it’s him that’s going through it all, I don’t know if I remembered right it’s been a while since I’ve read the books.
    Oh yeah, the villains didn’t impress me too and at this rate I’m not going further into the series but I give Horowitz props for making the situations Alex gets himself into actually do-able.

    • Carrie Slager

      I think Anthony Horowitz sacrificed characterization in order to create a good action scene and you’re right: we are distanced from Alex. I like to read the main character’s innermost thoughts and I wasn’t really able to do that throughout the series.

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