Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Deployed by Mel Odom

Lance Corporal Bekah Shaw joined the United States Marine reserves to help support herself and her son when her ex-husband, Billy Roy, decided they were no longer his responsibility. But when her team is activated and sent to Somalia on a peacekeeping mission, Bekah struggles with being separated from her son and vows to return safely.

Once a successful Somalian businessman, Rageh Daud has lost everything. Determined to seek revenge on the terrorists who killed his wife and son, he teams up with a group of thieves, killers, and others displaced by war. Despite his better judgment, Daud becomes the protector of a young orphaned boy—who becomes a pawn between the warring factions.

To defeat the terrorists and bring peace to the region, Bekah and her team must convince Daud that they are on the same side.
Deployed by Mel Odom was an exciting novel that clearly displayed the struggles of deployed soldiers, the issues that they often face, and the seemingly unlikely alliances that can occur. The plot moved quickly throughout the book, and it jumped from Daud's perspective in Somalia to Bekah's perspective at home in the United States to the perspective of her lieutenant as he struggled with moral issues as a lawyer. The narrative setup allowed for the reader to meet more characters and have a wider perspective on the setting and storyline as it developed. It did make the story seemed jumbled at times, and it disconnected me from the characters and what was going on sometimes. However, it was still a neat way to present the story.
The characters were a mix of ruffians and criminals and diverse group of Marine reservists that were all thrust into an explosive situation in Somalia. Bekah Shaw was the only character that was really fleshed out during the novel. As the reader we were allowed to view her thoughts and experience the struggles she had as a single mom leaving her child at home while dealing with prejudices abroad in the Marine Corp. I enjoyed learning about her feelings and experiences, but I would have liked to see more development in Daud's character. He was a very conflicted and devastated man, and it would have been interesting to have learned more about him. I also would have liked to been able to connect more with Bekah's lieutenant and the other soldiers that were with her.
Overall, I thought Mel Odom did a great job crafting a well researched and exciting novel that clearly portrayed the issues that our soldiers face at home and abroad.
I received this novel for free from Tyndale Press in exchange for an honest review.


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