The Detachment (John Rain Thrillers) - Barry Eisler Yeah baby. It's love. Once I got past the preliminaries this was can't-put-it-down good for me. The end was a little too pedestrian, but the story still has enough going for it that I want to give it five stars. This is a hybrid, a sort of harmonic convergence of characters from two series, although they don't always converge most harmonically. John Rain and his buddy Dox team up with Ben Treven and Larison at the behest of Colonel Horton, who offers them a pay-off they can't turn down. The dynamic among the four members of the detachment keeps things lively, with Dox providing the comic relief that lets everyone stand down and still save face when things get tense. This group is a walking testosterone storm. They're all ultra-macho and suspicious -- typical in their line of work. The power struggles and pissing contests are inevitable, but they have to man up and keep it together so they can accomplish their mission. Said mission being nothing less than saving America from a plot to suspend the Constitution by sowing so much fear in the hearts of Americans that they're willing to give up their freedoms for an illusion of safety. Sound far-fetched? Read Naomi Wolf's The End of America for a nonfiction perspective. Does Eisler have an agenda? Most certainly. He blogs about torture, civil liberties, and the rule of law, so it's no surprise that his political views influence his fiction writing as well. What's more, he includes five pages of web addresses at the back of the book introduced with the following statement: "Much of the backstory and the technology, and many of the incidents, described in this book are real."It's not necessary to have read the Ben Treven books before reading this one, but you really do need to be familiar with the John Rain series to appreciate the bond between Rain and Dox and understand Rain's peculiar set of powers and proclivities.