- Listening Length:16 hours and 7 minutes
- Publisher:Blackstone Audio, Inc.
- Release Date: April 7, 2011
- Source: Personal copy
After his last mission left Department of Military Science agent Joe Ledger emotionally broken, he decides to “unofficially” retire from his duties. However, when a terrorist attack destroys the Royal London Hospital, killing thousands of innocent people, Ledger leaps back into action. The attack on the Royal London is just the first move in a series of attacks at the hands of The Seven Kings, a terrorist group made up of seven of the most dangerous people of all time. The terror they unleash isn’t by their own hands, but those of innocent people, threatened to the point of submission by a man referred to as the Spaniard.
The Kings have seemingly unlimited resources, turning to bioweapons in an attempt to unleash the modern version of the biblical Ten Plagues of Egypt. Worse is the implication that the Kings are everywhere, even among the members of the DMS. Ledger, Church, and the other DMS agents are put on edge until they can found out who the traitor/double agent is and put an end to the acts of the Seven Kings before it is too late.
The King of Plagues is the third book in the Maberry’s Joe Ledger series, after PATIENT ZERO and THE DRAGON FACTORY. By this time, the characters, including Joe Ledgers, are well established, their history as a team is established. As with THE DRAGON FACTORY, we now see a deeper, more emotional and sympathetic side of Ledger. Still vulnerable after the death of his love interest, Ledger is reluctant to leap immediately back into the folds of the DMS. In a sense, he craves to be normal but also realizes that he lives in a world in which this is not possible. The addition of Ghost, his dog/DMS agent, adds a new element to Ledger’s character.
As with all of Maberry’s other books, the storyline is genuinely unique and engrossing. Had this not been an audio book (which I only listen to during my commute to and from work) I would have finished this book in one evening. It is that suspenseful, demanding all of my listening time. In addition to the new evil characters unveiled, I was both surprised and a bit excited to see two of the DMS’ most notorious arch nemesis making a return appearance.
A note on the audio production: As I’ve stated over and over again, Ray Porter, to me, is the very essence of Joe Ledger. He captures his hard exterior, his soft interior, perfectly.
Bottom line: As with any of Maberry’s books, I can’t recommend The King of Plagues and the entire Ledger series enough. A bad-ass government agent with a witty sense of humor, in touch with his emotional side? How can you resist. Highly recommended.
Tags: Audiobook, Horror, Paranormal Fiction, Review