A. J. Tata
Variance, Dec 21 2010, $25.95
On the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, Special Forces Colonel Zach Garrett and his commando unit attack an enemy camp. In the combat, their helicopter is destroyed and all assumed dead. In Spartanburg, South Carolina the Casualty Assistance Officer and Chaplain visit the next of kin, Zach’s teenage daughter Amanda, who loathes her father for never being there for her or her mother Melanie; she is indifferent to her dad’s death until she learns of his $500,000 life insurance policy. While her mother and maternal grandma Nina celebrate, there is a stipulation before she can collect, she must visit psychiatrist Dr. Riley Dwyer.
In Loudoun County, Virginia, a Casualty Assistance Officer informs CIA operative Matt Garrett of his brother’s death. Matt travels to Afghanistan to bring home Zachary's remains. However, he decides on one unsanctioned avenging raid on those who killed his sibling, but begins to find interesting information. Back in South Carolina Zach’s ex wife and former mother-in-law begin the purge of his existence.
The third Garrett “threat” thriller (see Rogue Threat and Sudden Threat) is an exciting military operative tale that rotates between the theater and the home-front. The story line is fast-paced in theater while poignant at home. Beyond what they do to brainwash their daughter, the unbelievable additional activity by Nina and Melanie are over the top of Sassafras Mountain. Still fans will enjoy this solid entry as the field escapades are entertaining and the spotlight on a stay at home parent’s destructive influence towards her offspring make for a powerful storyline as Melanie and Nina make Cruella DeVille look like Mother Teresa when it comes to brainwashing Amanda.