[HTML 1]

Let’s get right to the point. The Last Patriot, a thriller by Brad Thor, is the most ridiculous book I’ve read in my adult life with the possible exception of Everyone Poops by Taro Gomi, which I read to my children when they were toilet training. The book was so impossibly bad that I could not put it down. It was like watching a clown car accident – every time the paramedics would pull a dead clown from the wreckage they would find another, and another, and another… Anyway, for all its faults, The Last Patriot managed to both top the New York Times Bestseller list and be banned in Saudi Arabia. As a result of death threats Thor received after this book was published, WorldNetDaily dubbed the author “the new Salmon Rushdie.” Now that’s offensive.

The Last Patriot is a work of right-wing fantasy that features Scot Harvath, a former U.S. Navy SEAL and Secret Service Agent, who works so far undercover as a Department of Homeland Security operative that only the President really knows that he works for the government. By golly, Harvath just happens to be vacationing with is sweetheart in Paris at the right place and time to witnesses and foil a car bombing. What a coincidence! Thank goodness, Harvath jumps into action and learns that the intended victim is a college professor on a secret mission from the President of the United States.

That begins a dizzying chain of events that reveals that President Thomas Jefferson left clues in a rare first edition of Don Quixote that he, Jefferson, had discovered that the Quran had been altered; that Mohammed had a final revelation of peace, light, puffy clouds and flowers, that countered his previous violent proclamations. Harvath begins a race to safely recover the documents before hoards of Muslim extremist assassins can find and destroy them. Of course, this is all a ham fisted attempt by the author to mimic what Dan Brown does so effectively.

I can understand how this would be offensive to Muslims around the world, but really it is done so poorly that they should just laugh it off and let the book fade away in ignominy. But it’s not just the plot that offends. As someone who counts Muslims among his close personal friends, I found myself cringing during long anti-Islamic editorial diatribes that Thor interjects throughout the book.

Thor’s prose is about as satisfying to read as a Department of Defense brief. He includes a complete bio of each character he introduces. Humorously, in addition to what schools they attended and their governmental service record, he feels compelled to tell you how tall each is in feet and inches. I amused my family at dinner one evening by fanning through the book’s pages and calling out every character’s height.

But none of this detail helps. His characters are life-size cardboard cutouts with bios written on yellow Post-its stuck to their foreheads.

When it comes to personal firepower, Harvath is well equipped. His manly armory is stored in a climate controlled vault beneath his home that he calls the “crypt”. It includes: shotguns by Beretta, Benelli, Remington and Mossberg; two Robar RC 50 rifles; “one of almost every Heckler & Koch machine and submachine gun model produced in the last twenty years”; and variants of M16 Clinic’s Viper.

But Harvath’s most treasured weapon is a custom built LaRue Tactical “stealth” M4 rifle with an Aimpoint CompM4 red dot sight, Xiphos NT rail light, and FLS Laserlyte laser. In honor of the Norse god of thunder, Harvath had the word “Thor” laser etched on the side of the magazine well. Any connection between that adornment and the author’s ego are no doubt purely unintended. With all this firepower, Sigmund Freud might conclude that there is some mighty compensating going on. Perhaps there wasn’t room enough to tattoo the author’s name on the side of his penis.

As a sidearm, Harvath packs a .45 HK USP Tactical that throws Winchester 230-grain SXT&P lead. And just think, Ian Fleming, a real life intelligence officer for the British during World War II, didn’t think to give his hero James Bond anything more than a puny .25 Beretta automatic.

I’ve told my children that I will always keep a copy of this book on my bookshelf. Why? Because it gives me hope. If The Last Patriot can become a national best seller and make money for an agent, publisher, booksellers, and the author, it gives me hope that I too can achieve big-time success as a writer. But that’s just me. My recommendation to everyone else is that they save their money and, more importantly, their time and just let this book mold on the shelves of Half Price Books.

17 Responses to Book Review: The Last Patriot by Brad Thor

  1. Wow. Why dontcha tell us how you REALLY feel about it? Don’t hold anything back. Come on…

    I read The Last Patriot when it came out (it’s been a while) and although nobody’s gonna confuse Thor’s work with Hemingway (or with Clancy, for that matter), I found it to be what I expected – an entertaining and forgettable read. Books like this are (to me, anyway) mental cotton candy – attractive, tasty in VERY small doses, but ultimately unsatisfying and lacking in nutrition – kind of the antecedent for guys to the bodice-rippers that appeal to so many women. “Ahkmed’s heaving AK-47 thrust manfully though the smoke and fire, as it tore a swath through the undulating infidels.” Wow. Now I’m all verklempt…

  2. Makes me ponder the purchase of my LaRue Tactical stealth upper…nah who I am I kidding. This book will just add more street cred at the range. Wonder who does Thor laser etching?

  3. Good post. Thor is a truly horrible writer. I bought one of his thrillers in an airport because I needed something to read. He is to good writing what scat films are to good cinema.

  4. You are aware that the gun Bond carries is not a .25 ACP chambered weapon, rather it is a .380 Walther PPK. I wish you were as intelligent as you think you are. Is it abnormal for someone working covert ops to have an arsenal at home? I wouldn’t think so. H&K makes fine weaponry and that is the reason they are so prominently mentioned, but such a munitions expert would know this already.

    • “When Ian Fleming wrote the first of the James Bond novels, Casino Royale, he had no idea the direction in which the stories would go, let alone how many he would eventually write. So when he introduced, Bond as using a Beretta 418 in a flat chamois leather holster he probably didn’t think too much about it. He had used such a gun during the Second World War when he was in Naval Intelligence and felt it was an appropriate sidearm for a secret agent on an undercover mission”.

      Don’t try insulting someone if you don’t know what your talking about. It makes you look stupid.

  5. Can anyone determine what the relationship betwixt Brad Thor and Mark Larue would be? For that incredibly detailed and worshipful bit of adulation towards Larue Tactical rifles I am curious, although I know their reputation is solid especially in the special operations sniper community.

  6. You clowns think you’re experts eh? Thor writes rather well, keeps his measurements and specs handy for people who read his series, but can’t always keep the continuity. All top thriller series of this genre do. Maybe contain your bad book reviews to subject matter you ‘actually know and understand’. I for one favor Thor’s novels quite well, as his ‘faction’ works have accurately predicted a lot of political and terrorist activities years before they happen. He and Vince Flynn are in a league of their own. (You might want to look up some history.) As to Thor and Larue’s relationship, they are now good friends, first introduced by top ex-military operatives who now work in the private sectory. I know for a fact Brad Thor tries out and tests such weaponry himself, and is very skilled with the firepower he relates in his novels. I’d put his advice over this scowling nonsense any day.

  7. I have read every single one of Brad Thor’s books and they are all great reads. I can’t put them down. I love it how these people writing reviews have no clue about the subject matter in these books that Brad Thor writes. Especially parts that hold some truth in real life. Being someone who has operated overseas, the book at times can get a bit out of control with the situations that one human being happens to get into, but it’s fictional and EXTREMELY ENTERTAINING which is what Brad Thor does for a living. He is a great author, and deserves nothing but praise for his work. He obviously has made people think since “The Last Patriot” was banned in Saudi Arabia. If you don’t think his books are entertaining, then you must not have an imagination.

  8. Anyone who doesn’t like Brad Thor’s writing, you have an option…don’t read his books. Read something you can give a positive review about and quit complaining about him. Or better yet, why don’t YOU write a dozen best seller books?

  9. Jealousy is an ugly thing, Billy-boy. “William C. Montgomery is a freelance writer”… which means he can’t get published, so he spends his time criticizing successful writers. Too bad – he could probably use the practice ACTUALLY writing something interesting!

  10. Thor’s books are entertaining and a fun read. The author of this article hasn’t published anything noteworthy and one wonders why he elects to take Thor to task over a ‘thriller’. Brad doesn’t claim to be Hemmingway. Grow up Montgomery.

  11. You can’t just start in the middle of the series. You have to go back from the beginning. Sorry Thor doesn’t feel the need to include a 10 page bio of Scot Harvath in the 7th book of the 13 book series. You read through the whole series and I bet your opinion changes. Very poor article from a highly respected website.

  12. Admittedly I haven’t read this book and I’m only one hundred pages in to blowback, but if it’s anything like the last patriot then I have to agree with the reviewer. The book is almost comically bad. I’m not professing to be a literary genius and certainly couldn’t write a best seller, but I do think its funny how personally some people seem to have taken the review. If this sort of book floats your boat, then good luck to you. Not for me I’m afraid.

  13. Soooooo, I read a lot. I usually have 3 or 4 books going at a time. Often toss off thrillers, sometimes classics, and even non-fiction on occasion. I’ll comment on what I’ve read when asked but always try to be fair based on whatever genre I’m talking about. However I at least have read the book…I don’t think this reviewer did.
    Either you went in with the intent of not liking this book or as others have mentioned you are jealous of anyone else’s success.
    Whatever, but there are mistakes in your review that stand out, and you are also trying to paint the whole picture with a rather broad brush.
    You are extremely unfair to anyone who enjoys a good read and to compare this to Dan Brown is kind of silly when you consider what we have seen in the real world Thor’s book has probably a closer grasp of reality in his fiction than The Davinci Code has.
    I think you should read the book and try again, you were obviously having a bad day…another rejection letter?
    For anyone else curious about the book read the back…it’s laid out for you. If that is not your thing you will not like this book, but if you like heroes, if you believe there really is good and evil in the world and you prefer it when good wins out, read the book.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *