Nov 2nd, 2021
Lights Out by Natalie Walters delves into national security, international intrigue, and inter-agency cooperation. The plot has a national security agency looking for a missing foreigner who might be connected to terrorism, murder, explosives, and poisoning.
“Because my husband is in the military, we moved all around the US. We have friends and neighbors who work for other government agencies. During a dinner conversation with a friend, they told of how a foreign counterpart disappeared in this country. They were training in the US and went missing for 16 hours. Although it was an innocent situation, they sent him back to his country after he was found. I rolled with it and thought what if that missing foreigner was committed to do harm to the US.”
The story opens with CIA analyst Brynn Taylor heading up a program she developed to combat terrorism. She wants to make sure no terrorist falls between the cracks considering many are not the typical looking type. To gain traction and to foster cooperation, members of other foreign intelligence agencies were invited to America. But an Egyptian spy has gone missing. Jack Hudson, who has been working for the Strategic Neutralization and Protection Agency (SNAP) for almost nine years, is asked to take the lead in hunting down the missing spy.
“September 11th is an important part of Brynn’s backstory. The war was brought to American soil. SNAP was created to make sure another 9/11 does not happen again. Those that work there are continually on guard. Brynn told the US President, “For most Americans, their lives moved forward, but for me and others directly impacted by that day, we can never forget. I joined the CIA because I never want another child or family to go through what ours did.” Almost every American remembers where we were during that moment in history. Everyone around Brynn received horrific news. September 11th changed the course of her life. I think for Americans who were not affected personally, that horrific day does not hold the same weight. I looked online and found out that the events took place over a short period of time. But our world has been changed ever since. We know many soldiers who joined because of 9/11. Joining the military and any of the three letter agencies means that person swears an oath to protect the people of this nation. They sacrifice time with their family. They stepped up and stepped forward.”
Unfortunately, Brynn is loaned out to SNAP and Jack must work closely together with her, someone who betrayed him eight years ago. Trying to set aside their hurt, they work together to find leads that will stop the terrorist plot.
To lighten the load Walters writes great conversational banter. Readers get to know the characters and can decide who they want to hang out with.
This story has a lot of suspense that keeps readers deeply engrossed. Because of the plotline there is a sense of heroism to the story.