Joshua Jordan is famous for inventing the Return-to-Sender (RTS) missile system that is designed to defend America's borders from the growing threat of foreign missile attack. Yet he is forced to undergo federal investigation when he uses the system before it was authorized to defend Manhattan Island from a Korean missile attack. Joshua thinks he has dodged a bullet when he escapes the Senate hearings without a prison sentence, but trouble returns when someone kidnaps his only son. The ransom demanded: the entire log of RTS documents, blueprints, and plans. Joshua is not to go to the authorities or he will not see his son alive again. Yet Joshua finds a strange source of help in a fringe group calling themselves the Patriots who seem to have unreal and unlimited resources to help Joshua with. The question is who can he trust in these trying times to get his son back alive?
Tim LaHaye and Craig Parshall proved to be an interesting author combination. They proved the old adage correctly-two lefts don't make a right. They accomplished nothing together that they had not accomplished part, making this book quite a bore. However, this book looks like the beginning to a promising series because of the situation it sets up.
The characters are right the allies of these two authors-typical and plastic. One cannot actually feel like they are real people because they think thoughts or speak dialogue that shape their personalities. They say what the reader is expecting them to say under the circumstances. Joshua and his family and the villain are not model characters. The villain, Atta Ziller, reminds me greatly of Talon from Tim LaHaye's Baylon Rising series. I suspect he is trying to create a new version of him. I can only hope that they will develop personalities throughout the rest of the series.
The premise of the plot begins as an intriguing thing yet ends as a typical thing. Probably the best thing about the book is that it is not a typical end times plot. The rapture never occurs during the plot, yet the authors spend time building up background for the rest of the series such as an international currency and an international religion. This is something Tim LaHaye and Jerry Jenkins did not do in the original Left Behind series, and it was something of necessity because end times novels were becoming predictable and boring. Who but the creator of the end times genre was a better person to add a new level to it?
Yet by the end of the book, the plot descends into an average pitfall, having the main characters racing against time to stop the villain from blowing up Joshua's son. The authors should not have introduced this to plot unless they were going to end it originally instead of typically and predictably. It seemed like they were using this as an avenue to waste time and save something for the second installment in the series.
Basically, the first installment in the End Series comes out average. We can only hope that the authors use the setting they have invented correctly and make this series memorable.