Ben is a thief known as The Hand, but during a job in Tokyo he is set up for a much more than just a simple exchange job. Reeling, he goes underground to try to figure out who set him up and why, his only clue-an encrypted disc. Meanwhile, TORCH, the UN special security force, operatives are dispatched to figure out what happened at the Tokyo lab, the Hand being their prime suspect. The shadowy forces responsible for the explosion want Ben dead and the disc destroyed. Into the mix is added another element-a murdered padre come back to Earth to mete out God's justice.
Fallen Heroes is an interesting, action packed novel, and Barry A. Nugent is obviously talented writer who will hopefully continue to write and hone his craft. But the book has some problems, and it's hard to keep reading past the first 40 pages because of their presence.
The first complaint I have about Fallen Heroes is the lack of standard formatting of the text. I don't know whether this is only a matter of a .pdf that the author sent me, but the formatting definitely must be fixed out of regard for the reader.
Another problem, one that is more serious, is the lack of attention to plot. Take the first major sequence of action: Ben enters a secret UN lab to make an exchange, but the action makes us believe that he's going into a highly secure facility to steal something. What is the reason for this when such an exchange could have been done in any location? It turns out that we've been misled, and not in a good way because the reversal is a letdown, not a true reversal, which would be, for example, if Ben had to steal something and found that it was already gone. Instead, Ben enters Fort Knox in order to have a chat with some guy who gives him a disc. This just doesn't work at all because no thief would agree to enter such a risky place merely to have meet and greet and exchange things. There must be a clear and compelling story reason as to why Ben takes this huge risk of walking into a beehive of security, but no such reason is provided.
It may seem that I am being pedantic about this by insisting on attention to plot, but great writing is in the details; indeed, good writing of any kind rests on masterful arrangement of details. When the opening action presents such a giant hole, the reader is left to wonder whether the book is worth reading at all.