About the BookThe Prometheus Deception begins with a deep-cover operative, a beautiful cryptographer with a shadowy past, a government organization that's not what it seems, and an assignment that goes very, very wrong. Nicholas Bryson, a spy for a secret intelligence group known only as the Directorate, has his cover blown on a Tunisian operation and is retired to a new identity: Jonas Barrett, lecturer in Near Eastern history at a small liberal arts college. Five years later, the CIA corners Bryson/Barrett and tells him that his entire 15-year career in the Directorate was a fraud, that the organization was really an elaborate front for the GRU--Soviet military intelligence--and that his former boss, Ted Waller, was actually Gennady Rosovsky, a GRU muckety-muck. Even Bryson's beloved estranged wife, Elena, was actually a Romanian Securitate agent assigned to keep him in line. And now...
<blockquote>"Damn it!" Bryson shouted. "This makes no sense! How ignorant do you think I am? The goddamn GRU, the Russians--that's all in the past. Maybe you Cold War cowboys at Langley haven't yet heard the news--the war's over!"
"Yes," Dunne replied raspily, barely audible. "And for some baffling reason the Directorate is alive and well." </blockquote> So far so good; after 22 thrillers in this vein, Robert Ludlum could probably have written this one in his sleep. Fortunately for his fans, he was not only awake at the wheel, but ready to race--on a track with more twists and bumps than a roller coaster in an earthquake. The CIA claims it needs Bryson to reinfiltrate the Directorate and help them bring it down, but when Bryson is cornered by an erstwhile Directorate acquaintance aboard a floating arms bazaar and rescued by a woman named Layla just before the ship blows up, he begins to realize how the years of retirement have dulled his formerly keen reaction time. While Bryson cautiously feels (and fights) his way from Virginia to Spain and back again, mistrustful of his new CIA colleagues even as he dodges murder attempts by his former Directorate henchmen, there are rumblings in the hallowed halls of the U.S. Congress. Several respected statesmen are raising a ruckus about widespread invasions of privacy, behind which stand a Seattle software billionaire and a mysterious nexus of power called Prometheus. But is Prometheus allied with the Directorate--or with a different group altogether? Filled with post-Cold War double-crosses, New Economy high jinks, and even a few Wall Street shenanigans thrown in for good measure, The Prometheus Deception is pure old-style Ludlum, repackaged for the new millennium. --Barrie Trinkle