What a ride!
Frederick Forsyth is a master story teller and The Afghan is a strong example of that.
Forsyth’s stories are never simple. They always involve a number of events occurring simultaneously leading to a single, spectacular outcome. It always came to notice as how skilfully the author could narrate all of them without losing pace or track of the real plot. The amount of research put in here, like in all of his books is commendable. Such a detailed and well put story almost feels like the real thing. That is one of the main things that keeps the reader interested.
A fast paced story with a brilliantly intricate plot, the book explores into the world of modern warfare where most of the fighting is done behind a computer before a single bullet is even fired. You could almost feel the tension and gravity of the situation as the story unravels. In the end, I was in awe at the complexity and professionalism of a major terrorist organization, the Taliban and an equally adept special forces of some of the world’s most developed nations. Sometimes I wonder that if the terrorists get their hands on a similar amount of resources, there’s no telling how much further they could go.
Though this is fiction, it is still set during real times and events, most notably the war in the Middle East. The author familiarizes the reader in his own style, with the background history of the land and I can say that it’s one of the best ways you could narrate the truth. This part of the novel was both interesting and highly educational and I would like to visit that one more time.
When you put in so many elements in one story, you’re bound to get derailed from track. This almost never happens in a Forsyth novel. This is a master storyteller. And keeping all these elements together is the level of realism in the story. Many tend to get overboard with all the action and chaos but the author manages to keep everything at level. Maybe that was why the ending was underwhelming, I don’t know.
The ending was definitely less than what I had expected. But if you ask me, I really don’t know what I really expected. And I really feel sorry for the main protagonist in this adventure. [Spoiler] Not because he died on a mission, but how almost no one gets to know about the contributions of these men in this line of duty.
In the end, I ended up with having respect to both the terrorists and the special forces. If you love spy novels and thrillers, this is not to be missed.
Submitted to the Daily Post prompt Admire