Face Of Our Father (2014)
Reviewed By: Editorial Board
The Editorial Board of The Columbia Review selects new books and films of interest, as well as paid submissions and sponsored reviews from authors, publishers, directors, agents and producers.

It is rare to encounter an action thriller that does not shy away from in-depth character study. While readers of Nelson DeMille and, to some extent, Ken Follett, have been spoiled by characters that are deeper then the thickness of the novel in which they are featured, it is unusual to find a new author daring to reach for such heights (or depths) and doing it successfully.

“Face Of Our Father” by G. Egore Pitir has all the ingredients of a sumptuous thriller: Violent, complex plot, bursts of intense action, fanatically ideological terrorists, and an imperfect hero, whose determination overcomes his shortcomings (in this case, an airline captain with military background) and, naturally, a beautiful-yet-troubled love interest.

As the nature of this type of a novel requires, there is plenty at stake here (the lives of the heroes and an airliner full of innocent passengers), as well as realistic moral complexity that allows us to find ourselves doubting the heroes’ purity of motives and, despite ourselves, feel a twisted sympathy, on some level, with the villains.

Furthermore, in light of current events, the story could have been pulled off the evening news, with interesting locations, Islamic extremism, up-to-date technology and moral ambivalence. The action scenes are intense and highly believable, especially the physical aspects that excel in their imaginative choreography.

Perhaps most clearly defining the distance, or the difference, between the good guys and the villains in this novel (and in the world today) is the author’s succinctly phrased peek into the pilot’s mind at a moment of airborne crisis: “For a moment, he thought to pray to God, but God hadn’t trained him for this, the US Air Force had.”

Indeed, one could write a whole book out of this sentence alone.

In summary, the author of “Face Of Our Father” succeeded where many have failed. This is a great thriller with a soul. We look forward his next novel.