These Final Hours sees Colonel Neil Mattox and Chon Li Su in Pyongyang in the moments before America drops a hydrogen bomb on the city in retaliation for a nuclear bomb being exploded in America, which was retaliation for biological agents being released in North Korea to cause crop failure.
The book begins with the central two characters waiting for the American attack and then flashes back to how events had reached that stage. Much of the first half of the book focuses on the relationship between Mattox and Chon Li Su and the development of the ‘Three Horsemen’ plan to cause crop failure. Campbell is at his best describing action and with a fast-moving story, but the plot moves quite slowly in the first half and the breaks in time result in jumps. The second half of the book is full of action as American forces look to rescue some hostages from Pyongyang before the nuclear attack and it moves along at a great pace, with the action being well-described as always. Definitely a novel of two halves.
Rating (out of 5): ***