“The 14th Colony” by Steve Berry

The 14th Colony by Steve Berry
New York: Minotaur Books, 2016.

Instead of fading into nothingness, ex-KGB officers are going to make a last attempt to seek revenge against the United States for “destroying their country” and have just enough knowledge to get it done.  Cotton Malone, with the help of longtime friends and the soon to be ex-President of the United States, must race to discover their plot and avert disaster before noon on January 20th, when the new President takes office and the Magellan Billet is dissolved.  They know the pieces, but how could secrets from the Society of Cincinnati, a little known law in the Presidential Succession Act and the early American wish to make Canada the fourteenth colony possibly lead to disaster?

If you enjoy mystery thrillers, were of fan of the Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown or had fun watching the National Treasure movies, than you might be a fan of Steve Berry.  His latest novel, The 14th Colony was released on April 5th and is a continuation of his Cotton Malone series.  But no worries, if you haven’t read any of his previous titles, you’ll still enjoy this one!

Mr. Berry has a way of entwining tidbits of history with life endangering action that makes for a thrilling read.  Did you know that America invaded Canada not once but twice?  How about what happens during a presidential transition if the President-elect and Vice President-elect are killed?  I didn’t know the answers, although I may not be as privy to American law and history as some.  Do you know what ultimately brought down Communism in Russia (the USSR) or how much the KGB had infiltrated American during the Cold War?  Thanks to television I did know some about the KGB, but I didn’t really know anything about the cause of the fall of Communism or the possible affect the Vatican had on it.  With the little bit I did know of these subjects the details expounded in this novel seem believable and scary.

Like most of Steve Berry’s other books, The 14th Colony was incredibly fun to read. Since this is also a presidential election year, the pieces about presidential succession and the effect a terrorist act could have on the United States during that time period were interesting, assuming they are accurate.   I really enjoyed the return of characters from previous Cotton Malone books, but the best part is the way he brings to life pieces of history and conspiracy intrigue.

Susana Goldman is the Associate Director of Operations for the Alamance County Public Library system.  She can be reached at sgoldman@alamancelibraries.org or 336-229-3588.