Chris Westlake, a highly accomplished author and blogger, took time out of his schedule to review Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day at the Office. Here’s what he had to say:
“I have a confession. No, not that one. I am saving that one for a better time.
I confess that Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day in the Office is not my usual genre of book. A political spy thriller set in Pakistan? Far too complex and pacey. But that is the point. I am trying to stretch my usual boundaries and learn at the same time. And with this book by Khalid Muhammad, I am glad that I did.
Set in modern day Pakistan, our hero, Kamal Khan, goes undercover in response to a terror attack in Karachi. The politicians, army and spy agency all have motives that are in conflict with each other, and it is left to the ‘little man’ to take action. And take action he does! Kamal transforms from a ‘standard soldier’ (if there is such a thing) to a top sniper and ruthless interrogator.
The writing is fast and the story interlinks with several side-plots. Khalid demonstrates excellent knowledge of the political history of Pakistan with his intrinsic attention to detail. There is a whole spectrum of characters, from politicians to gang members, Sheikhs and terrorists, and although at first I found it difficult to keep on top of the names, I suspect this was more my fault than that of the book. Kamal is an interesting hero. Yes, he meets all the usual action-hero characteristics. Tick. Tick. But he also has a sensitive side that draws you in. He is human rather than robot, which is refreshing for this genre.
Khalid writes with obvious passion and pride for his subject-matter. Agency Rules is a great action spy thriller. Not only did I thoroughly enjoy reading the book, but I learnt a great deal, too, particularly about the real, rather than stereo-typed, Pakistan.
You can find out a whole lot more about Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day in the Office at www.agencyrules.com”