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Balance of Power (Tom Clancy's Op-Center, Book 5) (1998)

por Jeff Rovin

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833719,501 (3.1)2
Spain is a nation poised to suffer its worst internal strife in centuries. Certain well-placed Spanish diplomats sense it. Op-Center intelligence corroborates it. All the United States and Spain have to do is find a way to avert it. Before they can, an Op-Center representative is assassinated in Madrid on her way to a top secret meeting. Now all fears are confirmed. Someone very powerful wants another Spanish civil war--no matter what the cost.… (mais)
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Op-center
  BibliotecaOlezza | Sep 18, 2019 |
With ethnic tensions suddenly boiling to the surface, Spain looks like it might go the way of Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union or be kept together by a strong man in the image of Franco until Op-Center is put into the crossfire. Balance of Power, the fifth book of the Op-Center series written by Jeff Rovin, ghosting for the titular Tom Clancy, once again finds Op-Center operatives in the middle of an international crisis but this time one of their own is set up with deadly consequences and vengeance is on everyone’s mind only to find that taken away by a man who allowed the attack to happen in an effort to forge Spain in his own image.

Sent to Madrid to help negotiate between two ethnic factions of the country, Martha Mackell is murdered by an assassin contracted by the very people she had been sent to help. The men who ordered her assassination are then killed on the orders of the Spanish Chief of Staff who is looking to become the next Franco by inciting ethnic riots around the country, especially in his native Castile. With one of their own killed and a NATO ally tilting between violently separating and a totalitarian regime, Op-Center must do everything in their power with the help of local Interpol officers to contain the situation. Yet Director Paul Hood must also confront a situation in his marriage while Darrel McCaskey, Op-Center’s FBI liaison deals with his old love interest an Interpol agent who decides to take out the would be Franco herself which complicates things with Striker and McCaskey personally.

Released in 1998, Balance of Power uses the tensions in Spain which resonates today given the situation in Catalonia and effectively conveys the tensions in the country. Unlike the previous book in which a character’s stupidity—General Mike Rodgers—basically drove the plot, it was conspiracies against conspiracies with independent human actors fighting for their country, honor, and more driving the plot which was a vast improvement. Maria Corneja, McCaskey’s ex and Interpol agent, is the most prominent secondary character and while she was fine overall, yet if you had changed her name to Mario (Italian I know) and “she” to “he” nothing would have changed—save the romantic angle—but to say Corneja was a man with tits would be going too far. While there were little things here and there that seem like tiny plot holes, nothing really stood out as completely awful but if I were to choose the worst part of the book, it’s once again Paul and Sharon Hood’s marriage which has been choreographed to be doomed since the first book.

Like several books before it, Balance of Power is another Op-Center book with an intriguing plot idea but for once Jeff Rovin writes the characters and narrative to carry it instead of undermining it like the three previous installments. While it’s not the greatest action thriller, it’s a solid story with interesting characters which is considerably better than all the other books in the series maybe even including the original Op-Center. ( )
1 vote mattries37315 | Jul 29, 2018 |
This book holds the dubious honor of being the only one I've ever thrown to the recycling bin. And that after managing to read barely 100 pages.
The moment I read that the best place to find a priest in San Sebastian (Northern Spain) at dawn is in the harbour, blessing the boats for the fishermen, the book flew straight into the paper bin. I wouldn't have touched it again with a stick.
That single detail showed an ignorance of epic proportions. If that was an example of the research to write that novel, I don't need to know more.
( )
  Tacuazin | Feb 28, 2018 |
Malísima ( )
  gneoflavio | Sep 7, 2015 |
España está destinada a sufrir el peor enfrentamiento interno de los últimos mil años. Algunos diplomáticos españoles muy inteligentes y bien posicionados en el poder pueden percibirlo. El sistema de inteligencia militar de Op-Center puede corroborarlo. Lo único que deben hacer Estados Unidos y España es encontrar la manera de evitar la tragedia. Pero antes de que todo esto pase, una representante de Op-Center es asesinada en la ciudad de Madrid cuando se dirigía hacia una reunión diplomática de carácter ultra secreto. Así, todos los temores dejan de ser latentes y se confirman: alguien muy poderoso quiere otra guerra civil en España…, sin importar cuál sea su precio.
  kika66 | Feb 23, 2012 |
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Nome do autorPapelTipo de autorObra?Estado
Rovin, Jeffautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Clancy, Tomautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Pieczenik, Steveautor secundáriotodas as ediçõesconfirmado

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Spain is a nation poised to suffer its worst internal strife in centuries. Certain well-placed Spanish diplomats sense it. Op-Center intelligence corroborates it. All the United States and Spain have to do is find a way to avert it. Before they can, an Op-Center representative is assassinated in Madrid on her way to a top secret meeting. Now all fears are confirmed. Someone very powerful wants another Spanish civil war--no matter what the cost.

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