Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Publisher: NovelBooks, Inc 
Release Date: June, 2003 
ISBN: 15910512166 
Format Reviewed: Paperback 
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Genre: Military thriller 
Reviewed: 2003
Reviewer: Dennis Collins 
Reviewer Notes: Reviewer Dennis Collins is the author of "The Unreal McCoy" 

The Best Defense
By Todd A. Stone 

     Normally I review mystery novels, but every once in awhile I run across an off-genre book that is too good to pass up. Todd Stone's The Best Defense fits nicely into that category. The author's background as an Army Airborne Ranger officer combined with his time spent as an assistant professor at West Point provide him with all the credentials he needs to create this extremely intense and believable story.

     The tale begins when the United States Army assumes custody of a stockpile of Russian weapons left over from the cold war years. The arsenal, which includes a number of nuclear devices, remains within the boundaries of Russia on property purchased by the United States government and under the command of United States Troops.

     When the company commander is determined to be unfit, he is replaced by Major Valerie Macintyre, an inexperienced but confident and resourceful leader. Her resources are not exactly hardened combat troops; they are more the clerical type with a few MP's thrown in for balance. The group is small in number and is made up mostly of women.

     A force of "master warriors," led by an obsessed Russian officer, attacks the Infernesk Special Munitions Depot with the intent of capturing the weapons for resale to the highest bidder.

     The defense strategy provides an intriguing preview of the upcoming battle as the new commander calls on Sergeant Major Denight, her only seasoned combat veteran, for advice and guidance, while the Russian leader seriously underestimates the resolve and determination of the defending force.

The battle scenes are vivid and intense. It's almost as if the reader is there, hearing the gunfire and feeling the concussion of the mortar shells. You can see the action and smell the smoke. Just as in a real war, there is no chance to rest or catch your breath. The action is so real, I can guarantee that you will feel the battle fatigue after reading this book.

     The Best Defense is about the triumph of good over evil and it tells the story well.