Only Greg Rucka, the thriller genre’s most fearless writer, would dare create a spy so edgy, so explosive, so extreme, she should be rated X.
Tara Chace was once the most dangerous woman alive. And now that the international spy network thinks she’s as good as dead, she’s even more dangerous than ever.
Only one thing could coax Tara back into the game: a chance to vindicate herself. The torture and execution of Dina Malikov has set off a cutthroat grab for power in strategically crucial Uzbekistan. Tara’s job is to slip into the country and extract Dina’s pro-Western husband and their young son before they are murdered—by his ruthless sister.
But there are a couple of wild cards in the deck, including a missing mobile weapons system that can bring down a commercial airliner, not to mention powerful political careers. Now, as she vanishes into hostile territory with a man who may or may not be what he seems, Tara is going to find out that the war on terror is more terrifying than anyone knows. For in a battle where betrayal is a conventional weapon, loyalty is a weakness, and anyone—even a child—is a legitimate target: it’s every spy, every woman, for herself.
Combine a thriller that defies every expectation with a heroine for whom nothing is out of bounds, and the result is Private Wars, a suspense novel so explosively realistic, it should be classified.
Tara Chace, the heroine of Rucka's Queen & Country comics, stars in her second novel (after A Gentleman's Game). The special ops officer in Her Majesty's secret service is back in England, recovering from a mission in which her lover, spy Tom Wallace, was killed. When Tara learns she's pregnant, she quits the service and has a baby girl, Tamsin. After a year changing nappies and mourning Tom, she's offered a mission in diplomatically crucial Uzbekistan. President Malikov is ailing, and a succession fight between his son, Ruslam, and evil daughter, Sevara, has begun. Tara is asked to perform a dangerous, solo, unsanctioned lift, spiriting Ruslam and his son out of the country; of course she can't resist. After setting up child care for Tamsin, she flies to Tashkent and the op is under way. Things quickly go to hell novels like this wouldn't be any fun if they didn't and Tara finds herself in mortal danger at the hands of Uzbekistan's most loathsome torturer. Tara is often likened to a female James Bond (she can drink, sleep around and kill just like a man), but she's really more interesting than the comparison would suggest. These are well-researched, intriguingly complicated, exciting spy novels in the tradition of Adam Hall and his great series hero, Quiller.