Foreword Reviews

Truth in Hiding

Clarion Rating: 4 out of 5

This riveting novel delivers ample action and intrigue.

M. M. Frick’s Truth in Hiding is an alternative modern historical thriller starring Casey Shenk, an average man and confessed conspiracy theorist. This riveting novel delivers ample action and intrigue.

Already entangled in the machinations of a shadowy secret organization, and after surviving several attempts on his life, Casey dives once more into the world of espionage. He seeks to uncover connections between his own experiences and events on the global stage, and learns that you can’t trust everyone.

Set in an quasi-alternate time line following the events of 9/11 and the start of the Iraq War, the wider plot follows Iran’s possible development of nuclear weapons and its potential to trigger a war with Israel. While investigating this development, Casey is pulled back toward The Council, a secret group of high and mighty people trying to shape world events for America’s benefit. Along the way, he learns that Iranian intrigue and The Council might be connected, and has run-ins with Iranian and Israeli assassins and old flames.

This third installment of the Casey Shenk series handles the protagonist’s continuing involvement in events that are spectacularly out of his league. Casey is increasingly aware that getting involved in major political activities and clandestine affairs is a good way to get killed. However, he doesn’t let that stop him from doing what is right, and he shares his views with his partners, a reporter and an Israeli assassin.

All of the characters, whether heroic or villainous, display depth, and are both enjoyable and relatable. Ostensible bad guys are shown some compassion, and the good guys are not spared criticism. Frick does an excellent job of conveying the very gray nature of the moralities that dictate global events. Insights come through these complexities, including the notion that America’s involvement in global affairs doesn’t always work out for the best.

The cultures and political situations of the Middle East are rendered with intelligence, creativity, and balance. Iran is shown to be more than just a mustache-twirling bad guy; it is comprised of a variety of people, all with their own intentions. The novel also handles thriller and mystery tropes well, staying true to the genre, but focusing on character development between action scenes. The plot progresses and thickens at a believable pace. A few moments in which symbols or terms are overexplained are a slight distraction.

Truth in Hiding is an action-based thriller that is both entertaining and insightful.

Reviewed by CJ Triplett

Disclosure: This article is not an endorsement, but a review. The author of this book provided free copies of the book and paid a small fee to have their book reviewed by a professional reviewer. Foreword Reviews and Clarion Reviews make no guarantee that the author will receive a positive review. Foreword Magazine, Inc. is disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

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