It was inevitable that my run of at-least “decent enough” later Mack Bolans would come to an end at some point.
The blurb was promising enough. To stop a nuke, Mack Bolan gets caught up in the world of motorcycle racing. It felt like the kind of zombie sorceress plot I enjoy, and I was wondering “So, how are these going to connect?” It reminded me of one of those missions in Grand Theft Auto games everyone hates where the boss-of-the-week forces you into this linear, nonsensical set-piece with dubious mechanics where a more direct approach is seemingly better. Something like:
“Ok, Claude/Tommy/CJ/Niko/Michael/Franklin/Trevor, the nuke is in a shack with only three guards. Last mission you killed thirty armed people, but you can’t just grab your minigun and storm the shack. No, you first have to win a motorcycle race against computer opponents who do everything but throw blue shells at you. What, that’s unfair? Well, we could have put trains in! Be lucky we didn’t do that!”
The actual book is not nearly as amusing as that hypothetical thought. The motorcycle racing plot is mostly just A: A way to set up the various Macguffins, and B: A way for the author to talk about motorcycles and motocross. Cue some of the most generic, third-rate action possible to defeat some of the most generic “evil terrorists” possible, and conclude with one of the most stereotypical “defuse the bomb” scenes.
It’s kind of a little hard to even criticize because of how shallow and generic it seems. But yeah, in short it’s shallow, generic, and the motorcycle racing plot isn’t taken advantage of in an amusing way.