Tales of MI7 is a series, so do I have to read the books in sequence?
Tales of MI7 isn't a series in that sense. It's not like Lord of the Rings or The Forsyte Saga. Certain characters and relationships endure across novels, but their back stories are never integral to the plot. Each novel aims to be self-intelligible, like those in Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot or Len Deighton's Harry Palmer series.
What can I expect for my money?
Each book is between 80 and 90 thousand words long - the average size of the novels in your local library, in other words - and complete in itself. There are some e-novelists who write 100,000 words, then chop the whole into four or five 'parts' to go on sale at $2.99 each. That's fine, so long as the buyer knows in advance. The problem comes when he or she only realises at the end of installment one. Like or loathe Tales of MI7, you'll always be spared that.
Finally, espionage novels for the 21st century?
If you're interested in transparency (or lack of it) in party politics, press freedom, the crisis in Ukraine, the future of Western government, the mechanics and consequences of radicalisation, the impact of tax evasion, the Occupy movement, Wikileaks and democratic accountability, and you like reading about detectives as much as you enjoy secret agent fiction, then Tales of MI7 is your cup of tea. Expect complexity of plot, a moral compass, and a little philosophical reflection.
"This is what J. J. Ward is really good at. He only needs a few words to evoke specific moods and characterizations, and you barely even notice it. Instead you are pulled along by the plot and the excitement (you know, the spy stuff), and when you finish a chapter you think, 'Wow, that's pretty rich'." - Miranda on Amazon.
"If you haven’t read any of this author’s books, you’re missing out on a collection that I claim to be one of my favorites in a rather expansive personal library. I can say without reservation that if you purchase these works, you may just find yourself with the same observation." - EA Gray, Amazon top 100 reviewer.
"If you’re looking for a new political thriller to sink your teeth into, I would highly suggest checking out J J Ward’s many novels." - Owen Robinson on Amazon.
"Think through the suspense espionage thrillers that remain like phantoms in the brain and likely they will have been conceived by a British Isles author ... We now add another master of the medium in J.J. Ward." - Grady Harp, Amazon top 100 reviewer.
Our Woman In Jamaica
Kingston, 1980. When Michael Manley, Jamaica's fourth prime minister, calls a general election, the CIA and MI6 are determined to secure the "right" result. That may mean stirring up discontent. Even worse, it may mean bringing disgraced former employee, Ruby Parker, out of premature retirement.
The Kramski Case
Britain in 2010 is in the throes of a general election and, in the background, paparazzi keep getting assassinated. Politicians and celebrities - could the two possibly be connected? It takes the three best agents from three different countries - Britain, the USA and Russia - to discover the shocking truth.
The Girl From Kandahar
When a female British agent in Afghanistan is accidentally killed during a drone strike, everyone assumes that is the tragic end of the matter. Far from it. Suddenly, she turns up in London again. But without any memory of who she wants was and with mass murder on her mind.
The Vengeance of San Gennaro
Everyone knows Venice is unique. But not everyone knows it's where MI7's old enemy, Constantius Sopa, intends to detonate what advance intelligence suggests is a devastating biological weapon. British agent, Gavin Freedman, is sent to investigate. The case gets stranger and stranger.
The Eastern Ukraine Question
A group of disaffected Russian oligarchs has the bright idea of fomenting Ukraine-like unrest in Siberia. Maybe they'll teach Vladimir Putin a lesson. MI7 agrees to "monitor" the situation. As events spiral increasingly out of control, only one man can retrieve the situation. Enter agent John Mordred.
The Social Magus
A new political party called "Real Alternative" appears on the British landscape. So far so good, but no one knows who is funding it. MI7 agent John Mordred is assigned to investigate. He quickly uncovers a tortuous network of leads, all going in the same direction. Is it the erosion of democracy as we know it - or its salvation?
Encounter With ISIS
The daughter of a British government minister leaves home, apparently to go to Syria. The facts are kept quiet while MI7 sends its best agents to intercept the girl en route. Things turn out to be much more complicated than this, however - and even more deadly.
World War O
"No More Offshore!" Out of nowhere, the world's biggest-ever anti-capitalist demonstrations take the media, the NSA and GCHQ by surprise. Who is behind them? Are they a good or a bad thing? With a family connection in the brew, and with time running out, agent John Mordred must decide whose side he's on.