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"Pulse" is a perceptive novel which treats the United States' effort to deal with today's dangers and armed conflict in the Middle East. It contains highly detailed information on the defense capabilities of Iran, Israel and the U.S., interwoven with a thrilling and violent plot. Pulse is especially timely in the light of the nuclear treaty recently entered into among Iran on one side and the U.S. and several European nations on the other.
Author, Cook, reprises the team of brilliantly unconventional characters from his first novel, "Cooch", who are dedicated to making the Middle East a better, safer place. The group has its intellectuals and strategists but is not averse to violence to achieve its ends. This latter trait is personified in the Group's leader, Alex Cuchulain (Cooch), an Islamic scholar and commando, based in Morocco.
The book's plot is ingeniously crafted and well-written. The thrills and plot twists are non-stop. The dialogue among Cuchulain and the President of the U.S. together with his top military and civilian advisers is intriguing, if at times bordering on a lack of credulity.
Pulse's fast moving plot makes for a good read at any time; but is especially suitable for summer reading poolside, at the beach, or on board a cruise ship. Its combination of the cerebral with decisive action should appeal to many afficionados of Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler and even the latter-day Stephen King.
Reviewed by: D.J. Farinacci (2015)
Iran has completed its first nuclear weapon and plans to attack Israel soon with it. The United States is considering a surprise, massive attack against Iran to keep it from destroying Israel and thus destabilizing the Middle East.
Alex Cuchulain (COOCH) is a key human element in the US strategic plan. Cooch is a legendary former CIA commando and now an Oxford trained Islamic scholar, well accepted in Islamic scholarly circles. He is a Sunni Muslim living in Tangier and the owner, through inheritance, of a large and powerful Middle Eastern trading organization.
Cooch and his team of five are tasked by the President to consider how gain the trust of Iran, following a US pre-emptive attack on them. Cooch is to convince Iran of the futility of resisting further attack.
The female protagonist, Dr. CAITLIN O’CONNOR has developed a computerized intelligence product named Emilie. It predicted completion of the Iranian nuke while operating under contract to the National Security Agency. O’Connor is a CalTech trained physicist who won a MacArthur fellowship at age twenty three. She has been developing Emilie since then, largely on the government’s dollar. Emilie is formidable, as is her author. O’Connor claims to be the smartest person in the room-- any room.
Cooch’s team meets with the President at Camp David to discuss the Iran situation. The President questions Emilie’s accuracy concerning Iran’s intentions and Dr. O’Connor’s abilities to create such an apparently prescient system. She convinces him that she is the smartest person in the room.
A third team member, BROOKS F.T. ELLIOT IV, is a former Navy SEAL and Rhodes Scholar. Elliot and Cooch are best friends from days in combat. Elliot is politically connected and the philosophical thought leader of the team. He authored the team’s long -term plan to transform the Middle East via technology enhanced education. He gives arguments in the Iran matter for a course of action by the President.
The President questions Cooch’s qualifications to act as an emissary from the US tasked to facilitate an Iranian civil war following a surprise attack by the Great Satan. Action stories are told by Elliot and others to establish Cooch’s credibility to act well under stress.