Men At War, Book II, The Secret Warriors

After starting off the Men At War series with The Last Heroes, it was time to turn my attention to the second book in the series, The Secret Warriors. This chapter in the role that the OSS played during WW II pushed the plot along with most of the major characters returning for another tour of duty.

The book starts and ends quite strongly, with the level of action and intensity that this author is known for. Much of the plot focuses on obtaining the uranium needed for the first atomic bombs. I never really thought about it, but the ore needed for the uranium, at least suggested in this book, came from a mine in Africa. More specifically, it was from the Belgian Congo, and was swiped from under the nose of the Germans, and smuggled out on a cargo plane. It's quite an interesting tale to hear how this was accomplished, at considerable peril. There are also some interesting cameos along the way including Charles Lindbergh (an aviation consultant during WW II), and Joseph Kennedy, Jr.

The downside of The Secret Warriors is that it sags for much of the middle, with a confusing cast of characters that make you wonder who the main players even are at times. In addition, Griffin's writing style, a terse, newspaper one, doesn't necessarily add to the excitement at times. To the best of my knowledge, the first four books of the Men At War series were originally published under a pseudonym, and while it is recognizable as Griffin, it's hardly the author's strongest work.

Grade: B-

Reviewed by Jonas

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