The Silent War
Some wars are fought on the battlefield with weapons and others are fought within the minds of people. Within this complex novel we meet several main characters that are battling and struggling with their jobs, their family relationships and one with the fact that he betrayed his best friend in a way that he might pay for dearly.
Bente Jensen is the head of Swedish Intelligence and does not realize that her list of enemies is growing, and her actions are monitored without her knowledge. Jonathan Green is a dangerous operative of M 16 and is hoping for a covert operation called Hercules to be reestablished. The competition in espionage agencies is huge and Bente is afraid of him and the distrust for him runs high. When we see and hear what Green has accomplished and the conspiracy to hold and interrogate, torture and kill political prisoners help in a save house in Syria your blood will boil, your body will shake and the graphic descriptions will turn your head away from the screen. This information was leaked to Bente by a British operative hoping to stop what has been already in practice for so long. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg and her downfall if she exposes this operation and Stockholm becomes aware of what that, will she be destroyed, let go or will it place her family in danger? M16 is filled with a ton of dirty tricks in their cache and someone is out to disgrace and destroy her relationships, her family trust and take her away from active service. Green is deadly and holds no remorse for anything that he has done and in his private life he and Bente have many common threads. But, when one misstep in his actions and demeanor becomes known to him as his best friend and superior learns of his betrayal to him, things take on a deadly turn and both Bente and Jonathan become pawns and targets of the UK establishment and their orchestrated and well planned revenge.
Also, important and vital is Bente’s relationship with her husband which seems strained and eventually comes to a roaring avalanche. Her son Daniel drives and when she finds a pearl earring in the glove compartment of her car, she suspects that her husband is cheating on her little does she know at that time that he is and that the earring belongs to Daniel’s girlfriend. Added in Rasmus her youngest son has not been diagnosed with Autism and OCD and his violent outburst, his inability to deal with bullies and the school’s not teaching understanding, leads to more conflicts as we learn that her husband even forced this child not to tell about what he saw keeping his affair a secret.
Things spiral out of control at work but she enlists the help of her assistant to document her husband’s trail of deceit as Green finds himself in another position, having to deal with someone called Grandma, having to find the leak that will help them in their mission a man called Pathfinder and the danger he faces is real, the loyalties he had are gone and the threats that he imposes on one agent he calls Vermeer changes it all.
Gustav Kempell is the head of counter espionage at Stockholm headquarters and is the one that learns about what she had leaked, and the result will take a lot of people down. There is suspicion that she is in possession of unauthorized documents and information presenting a big problem to her unit. She is warned and told that she should not have accepted that British contact and that she betrayed their friends. Then the unthinkable happens and she learns that her cell phone was compromised and that someone placed a virus in it and information was leaked to the British and when she learns who took the phone and who has the information her whole world will come falling down.
Backtracking when she last saw her phone, who could have taken it and the final reveal will change the dynamics of her family and the threat and blackmail that her younger son faced is tragic and sad.
Meanwhile Robert, becomes the new assistant head of M16 and Jonathan faces more strife, humiliation and has to take down Pathfinder, take blame if he does not get the documents from Bente and the entire situation is out of control and he is no longer able to find a solution to come out ahead or will he?
Vermeer is a doctor and Jonathan has him under his control and when he tells him what he had to do and that he is one of his agents will he still be loyal and both the doctor and his brother are of Syrian Islamic and he is one of the most skilled agents and sometimes you sell your soul to the devil and cannot get it back.
When Jonathan finds his prey and the soldiers take on the role of torture no matter how hard he tries to get the information out of him without killing or maiming him does not work. The scene is graphic and violent and when you hear on the news about this kind of interrogations you will witness one firsthand. Claiming he drives a taxi no one believes him and the information they need they will get anyway they want. Then we learn more about the person who has infiltrated the Stockholm division and why Bente needs to face something in her family life that will change and someone named Heather has tried to gather information about her operation and did and then when questioned she reveals certain information but will she survive what the other side has in store? The Belgian Ministry might decide to declare her persona non grata when Stockholm demonstrates that she is M 16. No one is immune from the hammer, but things get worse when Gustav demands to see her, and she must set up a meet with Jonathan Green. The final scenes are tragic and deadly but the saddest part is when her youngest son Rasmus gets caught in the crossfire when he refuses to stay at a friend’s house, told to leave and things get tense, dangerous and violent from that point on as Bente has to fight to keep him alive, hoping that help comes before it’s too late and what the soldiers to is unthinkable and will Ramus survive? What about her life after this is over? Where will she go and what happens when they decide to close her unit?
Betrayals, lies, deceptions on both sides each one vying for control and documents that will decide the fate of each side. But, which side will own them at the end or will they be destroyed?
Lives are at stake. Wars are fought by each character as Bente and Fredrik have to decide on their final battle plans, Jonathan will learn his fate and will continue to fight his own private wars, as Ramus needs to survive what he’s endured and the final outcomes will decide who will live and who will change and what will happen when all is said and done as author Andreas Norman takes readers deep inside the minds of killer, terrorists, heads of intelligence services and one woman named Bente Jensen who faces more than one demon, more than one injustice and must find a way to combat and overcome her own SILENT WAR!
Fran Lewis Just reviews