Replacing a legend is never easy. Replacing two, well, that’s pretty much unheard of . . . and yet that exactly what Marc Cameron did a few years back when he stepped in and took over the Jack Ryan universe, following the footsteps of Tom Clancy and Mark Greaney.
Over the last three decades, fans have watched Ryan, one of the few, true household names the thriller genre has to offer, grow up and climb the career ladder. When we first met Jack way back in the 1987 novel Patriot Games, he was teaching history. Later he would work for the CIA as an analyst (note: The Hunt for Red October did come out first, but Patriot Games remains the first book in the series, chronologically speaking), before eventually becoming Deputy Director of the spy agency. Then came a stint as the National Security Advisor, a promotion to Vice President, and, of course, Ryan was named Commander-in-Chief following an attack on the United States Capitol Building during the State of the Union—a position he still holds in this year’s Tom Clancy Code of Honor.
After numerous mega-hit thrillers and multiple film and now television adaptions, the world is still craving more Jack Ryan—and though nobody will likely ever capture the magic Tom Clancy flashed throughout his career, to say that his franchise has been in good hands since his passing would be the understatement of the decade.
The Gray Man author Mark Greaney began working with Clancy several years before the author’s death and carried Clancy’s legacy brilliantly before exiting the Ryanverse in 2016. At the time, fans were crushed that Greaney was moving on, but excitement quickly grew when it was announced that fellow New York Times bestseller Marc Cameron had been chosen to replace him. Now, three years later, Cameron is riding a two-book high, following a couple of critically acclaimed, fan-pleasing additions to Clancy’s franchise. And not for nothing, but his latest, at least in my opinion, is his best work yet.
This time around, President Ryan is desperate to help an old friend from his undergraduate days at Boston College. Father Pat West, after leaving a cushy career in Georgetown’s philosophy department, went to Indonesia, where he’s since been working with poor people and trying to make a real difference in the world. That is until he’s arrested for committing blasphemy against Islam—putting the priest’s life in grave danger.
Ryan, of course, cannot move “officially” on Indonesia. Whereas we’ve seen his power and influence as POTUS help him in the past, it actually restricts him in this one, making it much harder for him to help a friend a need. Of course, things take a turn when Ryan receives word that Father West might have stumbled upon an impending attack on American soil—and from there, it’s off the races as Marc Cameron slams the gas pedal to the floor and never lets off of it for a second.
Whether you’re a longtime Clancy fan or new to the franchise, trust me, Tom Clancy Code of Honor is not to be missed.
And stay tuned. In the coming weeks, you can expect a post from the Man of the Hour himself! Wait for it!