The Darque Side
Outskirts Press (2021)
Reviewed by Amy Lignor for Reader Views (09/2021)
Upon reading books in this genre, I have to say I am always brought back into the fold of espionage. I am reminded of the best of the best, like the amazing John le Carré. I remember, when it comes to Steve Burkart, being riveted in 2015 when he created “The Orchestration.” It was one of those books that kept the pulse racing and the mind in gear at all times. Then, in 2017, Burkart brought out “The Master Hacker” which not only was a fantastic thriller but also definitely focused on the subject that continues to be in the headlines to this day. So, when I received this newest “gift,” I was beyond elated and eager to sit down and dive into another Burkart masterpiece. I was not disappointed.
In fact, your skin feels clammy as you watch this crew of terrorists from Iran cross into America, soon to be followed on the U.S./Mexico border by the uncovering of a defiled body of a Border Patrol Agent that has been attacked. Right from the beginning the reader is expecting a “ride of their lives” as they follow Burkart’s imagination once again.
Now, these terrorists have a plan in mind; their goal is to head to Washington, D.C. and take out as many soft targets as possible that will result in killing as many Americans as they possibly can in order to start an uproar. Of course, being that we’re talking about D.C., we already know that our country’s president is one of the people they wish to bring down among their kills. Although they have a plan in mind, it is John Darque (AKA: Chadeaux), backed behind the covert organization he presides over, that stops them in their tracks.
Although you think that would be a time for celebration, the real war is yet to come. Darque soon discovers that this crew was a red herring used to cover-up a far eviler plot. Back in Iran they are working on a strategy to upend the entire world, and they’re not only working by themselves – they have the full support of Russia and China as well. As Darque continues to take the mantle, he leads his own crew in a wild pursuit of this threat throughout Europe and the Middle East in order to make sure that they are not successful in ruining everyone and everything.
The author and his espionage team take us everywhere, from the hot jungles of Asia that are filled with monsters—on four paws and those on two feet—to moments of complete anxiety where Darque goes up against tyrants in foreign governments that will never let go of the fact that they want to be top banana over the U.S. one day. What are the only things left to wonder? Whether or not Darque can win this, oddly, business and personal fight, and whether he can come out on top and stay alive until it’s time for him to fade into the background and go off the grid until he’s called upon once again. Burkart continues to do an insanely awesome job in this espionage realm and should get nothing less than 5 stars.