I just finished reading Task Force Desperate last night and thoroughly enjoyed the book! As a combat veteran myself I could immediately relate to the scenes that Peter Nealen paints in his book about Private Military Contractors in a not-so-distant future where the US economy is in shambles and mercenaries are the go-to option for resolving an international crisis. You can relate to the details in this book, the smell of gun smoke hanging in the air, the taste of sweat running down your face, even things like how much it hurts to pull security on a perimeter while down on a knee for long periods of time. Peter served in Recon and in Force Recon so he knows what it is like to hump a ruck and does a great job at bringing the reader inside this world.
TFD involves a small group of military contractors who are hired by the CIA to locate American hostages in the wake of an attack on a US military facility in North Africa by jihadists. Amazingly, Peter predicted the future in some ways as he wrote all this well before the events of 9/11/12 in Benghazi, Libya. Our heroes are called in to locate the hostages so that JSOC can come in and stage a rescue but in a time where the US dollar has collapsed and the military is severely under funded, they end up doing most of the heavy lifting themselves. The fact that the CIA and the State Dept. have their heads up their fourth point of contact doesn’t help matters.
Peter throws a lot of balls in the air in this book and the contractors have their work cut out for them as they tear through Djibouti, Somalia, and Yemen. Another area where Peter really excels is in his geo-political research of the Horn of Africa region. A lot of authors can’t hack this kind of thing and end up writing some silly partisan type analysis of international politics but Peter manages to avoid all that and come up with an accurate and interesting portrayal of a future that hasn’t quite happened just yet.
Highly recommended for fans of the new wave of military fiction coming from GWOT veterans!