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The Last Refuge: A Dewey Andreas Novel by…

The Last Refuge: A Dewey Andreas Novel (edition 2012)

by Ben Coes

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Title:The Last Refuge: A Dewey Andreas Novel
Authors:Ben Coes
Collections:Your library

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The Last Refuge by Ben Coes

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Let's summarize: a gifted but troubled former Special Ops soldier with authority issues is called out of retirement by an honest member of a corrupt Washington bureaucracy to organize a clandestine operation of immense danger against cruel and swarthy opponents. Mayhem ensues, and the spillage of many bodily fluids. Women find him irresistible after the mission's success, as they did before, but he wasn't having any of it then.

This describes something like the minimum conditions of the genre (political thriller? military thriller?), which has dug a rut as deep as the western novel during the Louis L'Amour era. We read them because the template reinforces a view we want to hang on to about the world, or about America, or about ourselves, though, so these books serve their purpose if they meet the minimum conditions with brisk pacing, original plots, and believable action. This one meets those requirements just fine, thank you. ( )
  steve.clason | Feb 4, 2013 |
"The Last Refuge" is not as strong as Ben Coes' first two books, but still good. And his recurring protagonist, Dewey Andreas, is starting to mold into what many recurring protagonists in the thriller genre become--rather one-dimensional, bad-ass killing machines.

"The Last Refuge" picks up where "Coup D'etat" left off--with the abduction of Kohl Meir, an Israeli black ops agent who saves Dewey's life. Dewey must now not only try to rescue Meir, who's been kidnapped by Iranians, but also stop the delivery of Iran's first nuclear weapon to Tel Aviv.

What fallows is a pretty typical, generic thriller. Good writing and nice action sequences, but just not up to par with the intensity of Coes' previous two novels. ( )
  Jarratt | Jan 2, 2013 |
Good plot (I seem to be reading a lot of thrillers regarding Iran nuclear capabilities, which just shows how writers try to quickly leverage political news), fast action, easy read. On the other hand, stereotypical, almost cartoonish characters, spoil the enjoyment of reading this novel. But then, who knows, maybe it is indeed so black and white in that world. ( )
  everfresh1 | Dec 20, 2012 |
I hadn't read any of Ben Coes' earlier novels before diving into The Last Refuge. I've reading more thrillers in the last few weeks and The Last Refuge sounded action packed what with Andreas having to rescue Meir, the Israeli commando from a secure prison and to find and acquire a nuclear bomb.

I gravitate towards actions series with flawed lead characters, so I quickly grew to like Dewey Andreas. We learn early on that the political regime in Iran is corrupt and unreliable and that the White House is attempting a political solution to halt Iran's nuclear research. When Kohl Meir is kidnapped from US soil, the story is very black and white. While the US is unable to take official action and unwilling to interfere, we know that Dewey Andreas is equally unable to walk away.

Andreas must find a way to track down Meir with his limited resources - he is an unemployed private citizen with a mission that most governments would balk to undertake. Coes makes clear that Andreas' operates on a code of honor and it's a code that the politicians can't afford to follow. Though it is clear where Coes' sympathy lies, when Andreas contacts the Israeli government and Meir's family, I immediately root for Andreas and the Israelis. The Iranians in The Last Refuge are largely two dimensional villains and this is the story's weakness. The Iranian secret police, politicians, nuclear scientists are wholly unsympathetic with the exception of one man who tries to prevent the attack. This brave man speaks out for the terrorized citizens who are against the extremism that rules Iran. With that caveat, it was easy for me to overlook the flatness of the Iranian villains in The Last Refuge because of the strength of the leading character Dewey Andreas. Andreas is larger than life and an unstoppable killing machine but he operates with a distinct moral code and deep loyalties. Though he's quite different from Lee Child's Jack Reacher, Ben Coes' Dewey Andreas reminded me a bit of Jack Reacher with his incredible reflexes and abilities and his willingness to dive into danger for what he believes in. If you enjoy an action packed thriller, I recommend giving Ben Coes' The Last Refuge.

ISBN-10: 1250007151 - Hardcover $25
Publisher: St. Martin's Press (July 3, 2012), 416 pages.
Review copy courtesy of the publisher. ( )
  gaby317 | Sep 26, 2012 |
This is the first book by Coes' that I have read and I was impressed. The plot was engaging and fast paced. The Dewey character is an ex-special forces operative who goes rogue on a whim. This is the type of character all good spy thrillers have. It is what makes the stories unpredictable. The Iranian characters could have come from the front pages of our newspapers. They povide an insight into the political machinations between the religious and political figures in today's Iran. I was disappointed, however, with the Jessica character. She is a national security advisor to the President but Coes has written her as a silly female who would prefer to compromise her position and Dewey's for love. She does not get a last name until late in the book. Other female characters were also introduced with first names only. Of course, the male characters were introduced by their full names. If Jessica is same type of character in Coes' next book I will stop reading his material. I find this characterization of women in these fields of work insulting. The plot was exciting and quick paced but the female characterizations made portions of the book not believable for me. ( )
  Violette62 | Aug 9, 2012 |
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With the help of leaked information from high-level officials inside Iran and dissidents from groups outside the country, a former SEAL and an Israeli commando devise a high risk, high stakes plan that will allow them to find and hijack a devastating device before it is deployed.… (more)

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