Title: Blowback: A Vanessa Pierson Novel
Author: Valerie Plame & Sarah Lovett
Release Date: October 1, 2013
Publisher: Blue Rider Press
Rating: 4 out of 5
Vanessa Pierson is a CIA agent with a mission: she’s been pursuing a nuclear arms dealer, and now she’s closing in. The taste of victory, coupled with the desperation to capture her target, leads Vanessa to take some extreme risks, leaving her informant dead in her wake. Now Vanessa’s superiors are furious with her and she must make some difficult decisions in order to ensure that she captures this dangerous criminal, even though the cost may very well be Vanessa’s own life.
Former CIA covert officer Valerie Plame turns to fiction with the start of a new series, starring a young woman named Vanessa Pierson. Because of the pedigree behind Blowback, readers can feel assured that, in the field, this is actually how it works. That believability is what will entice readers to the book; they’ll stay for the explosive action. Vanessa (according to Plame, a younger and smarter version of herself) is resourceful, and though she makes some frustratingly rash decisions, they’re understandable, given the stakes. Plame and Lovett took their time with this character, understanding that neglecting to properly develop Vanessa and focusing solely on story would drive readers away. The result is an action-packed thriller with an intriguing and appealing main character, a promising start to this new series.