By Emily Benedek
(St. Martin's Press, Hardcover, 9780312354916, 384pp.)
Publication Date: September 18, 2007
Other Editions of This Title: Mass Market Paperback
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Four airliners are blown out of the sky---a devastating string of attacks taking hundreds of lives and striking fear into people and governments around the globe. Marie Peterssen, an ambitious young aviation reporter, has a hunch about the crashes, and her suspicions are confirmed when she’s approached by Julian Granot, an Israeli airline security expert and former Special Forces commando who has noticed her work.
Julian offers Marie a rare lead, one that will send her to London and later into the devastation of war-torn Iraq. With the help of a maverick FBI agent, Morgan Ensley, Marie stumbles onto the makings of a terrorist plot well beyond the destruction of airliners: the detonation of a rogue nuclear device in New York Harbor. The terrorists know that America’s most vulnerable spot is its transportation system, and they mean to exploit it. Time is short.
But Marie is in the grip of circumstances beyond her control. Julian’s intentions are unclear: Is he helping a journalist uncover answers the world craves, or is he setting up the girl to flush out an Islamic terrorist who killed Julian’s partner twenty years earlier?
Julian holds the key, but Marie’s role in the frantic race to unravel the plot grows when she learns that she may be tied to the terrorist leader in a more personal way.
Author Emily Benedek was writing an article on counterterrorism for Newsweek when she came into contact with a high-level Israeli counterterrorism expert. Due to his ongoing role in international investigations, much of what she learned in the course of their talks could only be told in a novel. What emerges from those meetings is a bone-chilling story of suspense, as thrilling as it is plausible.
Emily Benedek’s writing has appeared in Newsweek, Rolling Stone, and The New York Times. She spent a year following an FBI special agent and SWAT team operator and wrote about an American F15-C fighter pilot who flew in Operation Shock and Awe. Red Sea is her first novel.
"The world's intelligence services are riveted by their investigations of four crashed jetliners, but a far dirtier game is afoot. Working separately at first, the Israelis and the Americans unearth traces of a well-advanced plot to explode three nuclear warheads in the heart of the sea lanes approaching New York City. Then Israeli agent Julian Granot recruits an American journalist and an FBI agent to foil the plot before Armageddon erupts. While not a roman à clef, this debut thriller by a seasoned reporter (Remembered Gate: A Spiritual Journey) purports to arise from the experiences of a real Israeli counterterrorism expert. Combining the nuts and bolts of a technothriller with the emotional resonance of young adventurers seeking truth and honor, Benedek's very readable, densely plotted, and cagily realistic saga—squeezed into two heart-pounding weeks—will have readers anticipating further escapades for her trio. Strongly recommended for popular fiction collections." --Library Journal (starred review) “A fine thriller... Emily Benedek is a tremendous young talent.” ---Stephen Coonts, author of The Traitor “Emily Benedek’s realistic and factual thriller about terrorism is not only a heart-stopping read, it informs as much as it entertains.” ---Naomi Ragen, author of The Covenant and The Saturday Wife “Red Sea is filled with complex plot twists and memorable characters, plus a chilling vision of a terrorist attack even deadlier than 9/11. Ms. Benedek obviously knows her stuff, and it shows on every page.” ---Nelson DeMille, author of Wild Fire “Emily Benedek is one hell of a writer! Red Sea never lets up from its gripping start, where airliners are blown out of the sky over the Atlantic, right to its page-turning conclusion in New York City. Red Sea announces the arrival of a breathtaking new voice.” ---Stephen J. Cannell, author of White Sister “A gripping foray into the world of terrorism. Benedek has done her homework.…A whirlwind ride.”---–Steven Emerson, founder of The Investigative Project on Terrorism and author of Jihad Incorporated.