Total Immunity by Robert Ward
Smart, tough Los Angeles FBI agents Jack Harper and Oscar Hidalgo meet their match in a diamond smuggler, Steinbach, who seems to have almost superhuman powers. Arrested during a clever sting operation, Steinbach tells the team of agents he will kill them, and sure enough, one by one, they start to die. Worse, Jack can’t begin to pin it on Steinbach, who is, after all, in prison. Soon, however, Steinbach makes a deal with Homeland Security and is freed with total immunity. Jack is pretty sure that he and Oscar could be next. But, as it turns out, Steinbach is not the only menace. Two of the agents who were killed turn out to be dirty. Jack and Oscar tour the seamy side of L.A. in hopes of finding clues, but they get way more than they bargained for.
This is Ward’s ninth novel, and introduces the somewhat stereotypical F.B.I. protagonist Jack Harper, haunted by events in his past, all too ready to use his fists and surrounded by greed and conspiracy. We begin with Harper bringing down a diamond smuggler, who in turn swears to kill them all, and the story quickly descends into car chases, shootouts and untimely deaths. A recipe you would expect to result in a fast-paced, entertaining novel.
Unfortunately, I finished the novel feeling disappointed. The story line with its many twists and turns is just not enough to counteract the poor writing style, with numerous scenes being ruined with melodrama and cliché, the dialogue suffering the most. Ward’s background writing for Miami Vice and similar cop shows has taken an obvious toll on his writing – full to the brim with ‘shivers down the spine’ and bizarre descriptions such as “his lizard heart fluttered like a butterfly’s wings inside his massive chest” making for unpleasant reading. A lot of the mistakes can be contributed to poor editing, but even with a rough editorial shakedown Total Immunity would still be a struggle to read if you are looking for any literary merit. If however, you want a clever if somewhat overcomplicated plot without much emphasis on concise writing style then Ward’s novel is a great book to pick up, entertaining and in some places surprising. Furthermore Harper’s supporting cast of fellow agents, family and friends add another layer to the book that takes it a step above simply being an action book, giving the central characters slightly more depth than might be first perceived.
So whilst Total Immunity won’t be winning any Booker Prizes, if you’re looking for something to entertain whilst not particularly stretching your imagination, Robert Ward is probably the author for you.
This Total Immunity book review was written by Jo Fitzpatrick
Have you read Total Immunity?
We've found that while readers like to know what we think of a book they find additional reader reviews a massive help in deciding if it is the right book for them. So if you have a spare moment, please tell us your thoughts by writing a reader's review. Thank you.
Total Immunity reader reviews
6/10 from 1 reviews
There are currently no reader reviews for this book. Why not be the first?
Write a reader review
Thank you for taking the time to write a review on this book, it really makes a difference and helps readers to find their perfect book.
More recommended reading in this genre
Never Knew Another
Fugitive Rachel Nolander is a newcomer to the city of Dogsland, where the rich throw parties and the poor just do whatever they can to scrape by. Supported by her brother D...
Apocalyptic Montessa and Nuclear Lulu
Mercedes M Yardley
Her mama always said she was special. His daddy called him a demon. But even monsters can fall in love. Montessa Tovar is walking home alone when she is abducted by Lu, a s...
A flash of light and Detective Joe Dante steps through. No longer on the cobblestone streets of 1961 Boston, Joe finds himself in a horrifying new world-Hell itself. Joe wa...
The Dirty Streets of Heaven
Sure, he takes the occasional trip to Heaven, but his job as an advocate - arguing the fate of the recently deceased - keeps him pretty busy on Earth, and he's more tha...
The Hollow City
Michael Shipman is paranoid schizophrenic; he suffers from hallucinations, delusions, and complex fantasies of persecution and horror. That's bad enough. But what can h...
Life sucks and then you die. Or, if you’re James Stark, you spend eleven years in Hell as a hitman before finally escaping, only to land back in the hell-on-earth tha...
Miriam Black knows when you will die. Still in her early twenties, she's foreseen hundreds of car crashes, heart attacks, strokes, suicides, and slow deaths by cancer. ...
Deadbeat - Makes You Stronger
Max and Tom are old, old friends, who used to be actors. Tom now owns a jazz nightclub called Deadbeat which, as well as being their source of income, is also something of ...
The Year of the Ladybird
It is the summer of 1976, the hottest since records began and a young man leaves behind his student days and learns how to grow up. A first job in a holiday camp beckons. B...
Looking for more suggestions? Try these pages: