Member Reviews

I opened the book to set it up on my reader. I made the mistake of thinking I would just read a chapter or two. So I spent the whole day reading this book. It was a story that kept me turning pages. So much action and intrigue. Clearly the author was engrossed with Jan 6. This book took the same theme and tweaked it. Cora Walker was a kick ass character.

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A really great read with thrilling twists and turns. I never knew what to expect and it kept me Interested until the very end.

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Much better than expected political thriller about what could happen if a power-hungry president learns all the wrong lessons from the Capitol attack in 2021 and sets up a more workable scenario to stay in power despite his loss in the 2028 election. At the core of the "resistance" is Cora Walker, press secretary to the Speaker of the House, and single mother and someone with the background (with a lengthy flashback to BenGhasi 2012) and smarts to see what's coming, and find the allies and way to stop it.
While this is a political thriller, it doesn't take sides in the Republican/Democrat debate. This is about a politician of any persuasion grabbing for power at any cost to the nation. Scary stuff, and scary is what makes a good thriller, and this one is strong in suspense and action, as well as smart and dangerous characters. Good depth with most characters, and I look forward to more books starring Cora Walker. Outstanding for a debut.
Highly recommended.

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Amazing talented author…intrigue and mystery…powerful…realistic characters keep the story moving quickly. I liked this. I enjoy political novels. Adam does them well. Trying to discern the secrets was not easy ith red herrings. Thank you Netgalley.

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Wow! 4.5 stars. This book is scarier than many of Stephen King's best works. Why? Because it wouldn't be beyond the realm of possibility to see something like this happen in today's political climate and social dysfunction.

In this fictitious look at the election of 2028, the sitting President, Terrance Locke, is soundly defeated by his opponent. Locke and his cult of MAGA-like followers refuse to accept the results of the election and decide to protest the election by marching on the Capitol on Election Certification Day in early January. (sound familiar?)

Locke has no intentions of conceding the election and instead has a plan to kidnap the Speaker of the House, imprison the VP, and many members of Congress. Once that is done, Locke will declare martial law and name himself President.

Standing in the way is Cora Walker. Cora is the Speaker's protector and "right arm". Walker is, for lack of a better description, a "baaad woman" along the lines of Vince Flynn's " Mitch Rapp" character. In addition to this, Walker is also a conflicted mother of an eight-year-old girl who worries that she is a bad mother.

The story that author J. M. Adams weaves from this point on is engrossing, believable, sometimes gory, and scary. Cora Walker is a great character who's easy to root for. I enjoyed this book immensely and recommend it highly!

Thanks to NetGalley and Oceanview Publishing for sending me a copy of Second Term in exchange for an honest review.

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JM Adams debut novel, SECOND TERM, is a tense political thriller with an unsettling premise. January 6, 2021, was just the warm up; or, in military parlance, a rehearsal for something much worse. It's now 2028, and the sitting US President is putting the pieces in motion to hold on to power ... what would we do? With smooth prose, Adams crafts a page-turner with complex characters at all levels. Definitely one to check out.

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This book gave me memories. A lame duck president is not going to give up even after losing election. Sound too familiar of a president who wanted to keep it and claimed election was rigged

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This novel is the nightmare those appalled by January 6, 2021 lay awake worrying about. Although it is an extrapolation of the thoughts of some today, I think it presents an all too possible political future with a lame duck president determined to remain in power.

Cora is quite the superhero, perhaps a little too over the top. I am not sure why she was asked to be involved in the final, suspenseful action nor could I really follow her changes in attitude. Some of her actions and those of the congressman puzzled me too. But then, that may very well be how congress people and secret operatives function.

The message of the potential danger was clear. “...[I]t doesn't matter what's true, it matters what the American people believe and what you can get them to believe.” (892/3295)

This is a chilling novel exploring what might be in the future of a nation with its democracy in jeopardy.

I received a complimentary egalley of this book from the publisher. My comments are an independent and honest review.

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When a lame duck president decides he didn't actually lose the election, he uses the powers of the president to hold the office hostage. Sound familiar? Only this is 2029 and this president took some valuable lessons from the actions of 2021. This is an absolutely brilliant story line that's pretty spooky in the long run as no one wants to believe this could happen once, and it has so why not twice? The MC is a woman who averted a incident against her orders and manged to survive the fallout. Now she's press secretary for the Speaker of the House and will do her best to avert this action. I'm really surprised it took this long to use this shameful moment in US history to write and excellent thriller. 5 easy stars!!!

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A debut action novel, Second Term by J.M. Adams is a political thriller set in the United States of America in 2028. The book opens in Bengali 2012 as covert operative Cora Walker ignores orders and tries to save the life of the American Ambassador. The narrative then jumps forward to 2028 as the incumbent President can’t accept that he lost the election and schemes to enact a coup on Capitol Hill. It's up to single mother and former covert operative Cora Walker, now working as press secretary at the Capitol, to ensure democracy is upheld. A fast-paced thriller with lots of high-energy action and rising tension, as opposing forces battle for the presidency. No doubt inspired by recent history, this intense action thriller with a new dynamic hero, has a jaunty four stars read rating. With thanks to Oceanview Publishing and the author, for an uncorrected advanced review copy for review purposes. As always, the opinions herein are totally my own, freely given and without inducement.

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I received an ARC from "NetGalley" and I am voluntarily leaving an honest review.

This story begins with Cora in Benghazi gathering information when she comes across information pointing to an attack on the U.S. Ambassador the next day. As she tries to relay the information to the station chief, he disregards it. Cora, however, has a group of security contractors convinced. The next day she and the others in the group go to where the ambassador is staying and tells him about the plot. He also waives it off believing that the potential attackers are friends. Cora is correct and an attack happens with many Americans killed. She and her group made it back to the compound having to fight attackers along the way. The story is reminiscent of the Hilary Clinton story while she was running for President.

Follow ahead to 2029 and read about the coup that the current Prsident had in motion after it was determined that he had lost the election. The saying was the the attempted cuop in 2021 was just a practice one. This President had taken care of any obstacles that would have stopped him. Read how Cora, who is now the Press Secretary for the Speaker of the House worked to try and stop the coup from happening.

This definitely is well worth reading and may portray future events that will possibly occurr with the political climate we now had.

Definitely a book that should be read.

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First and foremost, a large thank you to NetGalley, J.M. Adams, and Oceanview Publishing for providing me with a copy of this publication, which allows me to provide you with an unbiased review.

As the world still remembers January 6, 2021, J.M. Adams pens a debut thriller that is sure to turn heads and provide much conversation. Adams balances the tension of another political meltdown with a strong protagonist who will stop at nothing to keep her country together. Cora Walker is sure to leave an impression on many with this piece that extrapolates the happenings of January 6th with an equally ruthless dictator who veils his formidable destruction of democracy as a rally for truth.

Cora Walker finds herself as an integral part of the DIA in September 2012, where there are whispers of a Libyan attack in Benghazi. She is keen to protect the ambassador and keep a terror plot from coming to fruition. Her superiors scoff at her intel and mention that she has an overactive imagination. Cora refuses to stand down and decides to defy her superiors by preparing for an attack, working with fellow operative, Deacon Lobdell, to build a defence. When terrorist attack on the morning of September 11, Cora and her team barely escape alive as they counter the attack that she forecasted. Benghazi will be a political hot potato for years thereafter, with Cora Walker knowing the truth.

Fast-forward to 2028, Cora has taken a role as press secretary for the Speaking of the House of Representatives. She’s ready for most anything and has seen America scrape the bottom of the barrel during the January 6, 2021 insurrection on the Capitol. She’s a single mom to a young girl and refuses to let her daughter see a country that unstable again.

However, after a hard-fought election, lame duck President Terry Locke refuses to accept the results of the election, determined to show that, yet again, there are attempts to mute the people’s choice. As President Locke plans a rally to allow people to express their concerns, many see it as a new version of the 2021 mess. With Cora trying to preemptively block things, she is met with much resistance, especially since the president has turned all the intelligence agencies into his own personal soldiers.

As Cora reaches out to now Congressman Deacon Lobdell, who has long been a close confidante to the president, she will try to protect the Speaker and keep the Capitol from disintegrating once again. Cora and Congressman Lobdell agree something must be done, working covertly and off the grid. It appears that things are much worse than they were in 2021, with the people ready to kill in order to ensure their view of democracy is upheld.

As the Capitol turns into mayhem, Cora works to stay one step ahead of the worst rioters, sure that her life could be taken at any moment. Those toting guns and other weapons spout that this is in hopes of saving democracy and the republic, while hunting down Democrats like jackals. When martial law is declared and President Locke vows to ‘protect the country’ by extending his leadership for four additional years, Cora Walker knows that she will need to make the ultimate choice to bring some form of peaceful solution. With Congressman Lobdell running his own plan, there is sure to be blood running in the streets, where many have died for their beliefs. A chilling piece that reflects much of what came to fruition in 2021. J.M. Adams dazzles in this debut thriller.

I love a good political thriller, particularly when it parallels highly-realistic events. J.M. Adams has done it here, mirroring the January 6th Capitol Insurrection in this piece that projects ahead another 8 years. With a strong narrative, Adams weaves together a thriller that pushes what the world knows about American democracy and takes it even further. With a strong collection of key characters, the story flows well and has a multiple perspectives to show views from all sides. The various plot lines emerge as things get more intense, allowing the reader to see the depths of despair that could follow when democracy is shelved.

While all of this works well, I struggled at times to see how Adams would derive his own storyline, rather than creating a “Jan. 6th 2.0”. As the story progressed, things moved from copycat to the next level, with power concentrated entirely in a ruthless dictator and plans to suspend democratic ideals. With a number of references to 2021, this book developed a uniqueness that left me chilled to the bone as Adams pushed the envelope further and left little doubt to the chaos that could arise, should control be left in the hands of a politician drunk on absolute power.

Kudos, Mr. Adams, for this chaotic look into what might have been. I hope you have more Cora Walker to come!

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spec-fiction, thriller, unputdownable, snarky, action-adventure, CIA, Benghazi, repression, government-agents, government-offices, news-media, new-series, first-in-series, DIA, political-corruption, political-intrigue, suspense, Washington DC*****

It begins with DIA defense operative Cora Walker kicking insurgent butt in the disastrous mess that was Benghazi in 2012 and then jumps to 2028 and a renewed political mess in Washington DC. She is heroic, smarter, actually honest, and more attuned to reality than any of the fictional (or real) politicians. No spoilers here, but the publisher's blurb is a pretty decent hook. Terrific read!
I requested and received an EARC from Oceanview Publishing via NetGalley. Thank you!

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This near future political thriller was filled with exiting action and a great main character. Cora Walker is a former DIA operative who made her name in an action in Benghazi but switched her career to becoming a reporter and then working for the Speaker of the House of Representatives. She hasn't lost her extraordinary military skills or strategic ability which is lucky because the lame duck president has decided he doesn't want to leave the White House and has designed a coup that just might work to keep him in power.

Cora needs to evacuate the Speaker from the House when armed assailants and extremists egged on by the President storm the Capitol in an attempt to keep the election from being certified. Cora finds herself in the middle of a plot by a congressman whom she met in Benghazi which "saves" democracy by assassinating the president. But he might not be the only one pulling strings and Cora has to sort things out while running out of time and into danger.

Cora is an intrepid warrior, but she has more to lose than in her Benghazi days. This time she is fighting to keep her young daughter safe too.

I enjoyed this fast-paced thriller and this patriotic character who is determined not to let anyone destroy the democracy she has spent her life fighting for.

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This debut novel (not debut writing, but debut fiction novel) took hold of me from the beginning,
and I spent time away from the story thinking about where the tale would take the protagonist.
It turns out that because I read and enjoy so many of these political & government agency books,
I started to see where things might be headed, but never got ahead of the well crafted story. It
should be just a bit disturbing to see our world today and the world of Cora Walker, but the Author
did a masterful job in smoothing out rough edges turning the book into an acceptable, ending, but
certainly not at all the kind we’d accept. Even if you don’t watch TV or news, some of this scenario
will make sense in a disturbing way, but it should.. I’d be remiss if I did not express the opinion that
sometimes, once is enough! I recommend this to fans of Brad Thor and the Vince Flynn Universe.
I sincerely hope there will be more Cora Walker books because I definitely would read a series based
on her character and relationships with the cast of this book.
My thanks to NetGalley and Oceanview Publishing for an advance download copy of this book
in exchange for my honest review.

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A great political thriller that pulls in real past events coupled with a frightening future. Fast past action and good characters.

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Looking for an action adventure with the female being the protagonist? Well, this is it. Cora Walker is an operative and wanted to prevent the Benghazi murders. She was thwarted by the powers in Washington, DC. She and her operatives were able to limit the killings but not as much as she desired.

Next comes into play actual events of US politics (names changed) but Cora has gone back to school, became a journalist, and now is the press secretary for the Speaker of the House. The Speaker is also a very powerful female. Sixteen years after her involvement in the Syria incident, she is now faced with a similar attack but this one being perpetrated by the sitting, lame-duck President who had lost the 2028 election!

Shades of 2020 and the Insurrection at the Capitol all over again. But in this case, there seems to be no lifesaver and the National Guard, Capitol Police, and other power brokers seem to have fallen in line. The lame duck President has suspended habeas corpus and is planning on arresting sitting congressional members.

Cora once again steps into the breach, both to protect her boss, the Speaker of the House, but more importantly the democratic ideals that the country was founded on those many years ago. As you might expect this is an uphill battle against dizzying odds, but the former DIA operative is able to recruit, cajole, threaten to find helpers in her quest.

This book comes to a roaring conclusion showing how easy it might be to end the democratic experience with just a relative few complicit players. A most enjoyable read.

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I thank NetGalley for this ARC and the review here is based on my reading of this book. I tend to comment on the go so some of the comments are as per the reading of the chapters as I progress which may not reflect my final opinion on the story. Please read it as being the way the book influences my thoughts while reading it.

The book has two basic parts, both of which refer to two very different but extremely important incidents affecting the USA, one internal and one external, both of which changed the way the state's views and policies and is still continuing to influence decisions.
The first incident pertains to the 2012 Benghazi attack which was a coordinated attack against two United States government facilities in Benghazi, Libya, by members of the Islamic militant group Ansar al-Sharia and adds context to the role of the protagonist.
The second incident forms which the inspiration for this story, is an imaginary extension of the tenure former President Donald Trump's after his loss in the election.

And why should anyone care?
Anything that affects a democracy and one which is a super power and whose decisions and policies have a worldwide effect is something that everyone needs to read.
The coincidence of the date of the assault (9/11) on US facilities, i.e. On September 11, 2012, members of Ansar al-Sharia attacked the American diplomatic compound in Benghazi resulting in the deaths of both United States Ambassador to Libya & U.S. Foreign Service Information Management Officer is one to ponder although the overall incident is just a footnote in the book.

The manipulation of a democratic process including allegations and counter allegations of election manipulations that has made the process questionable is a part utilized in this book and extended to the part of a desperate President.

The story has a nice ring to it and with the topic hot and current is one which is very impossible to skip. The author has taken a bold step in portraying the story with that of a President who is under judicial investigation. The book provides a good story although the first part of the story was a needless extension that could have been trimmed to just a 2 page prologue, considering the rest of the story. The story has been shifted to 2028 but the rest of the things and the paranoia are the same. The story and the president's plans are precise and inflammatory, the response by Cora Walker, the protagonist and Ben Ghazi hero and now the right hand of the speaker and the hand of justice is precise.

JM Adams has put together a spinnable yarn and sells it wonderfully to the reader, which sometimes belie the fact that this is a debut novel. There is overkill but not enough to derail the bookish juggernaut.

Setting the actual politics aside this book should be read as an example of what can go wrong if the custodians of democracy take matters to their own end and start flitting with the boundaries and how megalomania can affect anybody and if it does then it needs a very special kind of effort to roll it over.

I do feel that democracy has measures in place to ensure many of the things in this novel do not happen in real life but a view of the dark side is sometimes required to strengthen resolve in the process.

While I am writing this review and with the book due for release in October months from the present, the electoral process has been challenged and lots of legal and extra-legal action is in process against and for the former US President Trump, this book is a fictional look at the future and provides a lot to ponder.


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Excellent political action thriller if you’re willing to suspend reality enough to accept a superhero like the author has created. She saved everyone in Libya and now she’s faced with saving the Union as a president who lost his try for a second term suspends habeas corpus and brings in his own personal supporters in an effort to keep control of the Oval Office.

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Dateline: September 2012. Benghazi. The US is hearing chatter about threats to the US embassy. DIA operative Cora Walker is dispatched to sort it out. She believes that the threats to the embassy and ambassador are real and recommends getting the hell out of Dodge. The main defensive force is overrun and the ground support where she is stationed is told to stand down.

STAND DOWN! With American lives at stake, she rejects the order and heads in where her team succeeds in saving some lives, but not the ambassador or the main staff. And her reputation as a crafty, creative, and ruthless leader under fire is established.

Dateline: December 2028. Washington, DC. Cora has left the military, done some local print and TV journalism near her SW Virginia home, birthed a daughter, and caught the eye of the national level journalism community. A job change puts her close to DC politics where her skills (and reputation) are noticed by Sarah Vasquez, the Speaker of the House, who hires Cora to be her press secretary.

Cora’s hiring is timely for the Speaker. The 2028 election has just been held. Incumbent President Timothy Locke has just been beaten in the general election. Beaten? Try thrashed. By 20 million votes. His policies and self-serving executive orders have been accepted only by the very far far far out right wingers. Tell me if this sounds familiar: the election was a fraud , invalid voting machines, inaccurate counts, foreign intervention, criminal activities by sitting senators and representatives. “God, Guns, and Locke and Load” chants roll across the nation. Weapons have been transported to DC and secured for the faithful to do what is right. Not to mention that a second term to save this country is the will of God to be orchestrated by God’s own chosen Supreme Leader. And that the only proper course of action is for the election not to be certified on January 6, 2029 and to swear Locke in for a 2nd term that evening.

Locke has so many in power in his pocket that he can command an army of loyalist National Guard to ensure that his wishes succeed. Cora’s job (amongst dozens of other tasks) is to protect the Speaker whom Locke has singled out as a primary target. In the days after Christmas, Locke has suspended habeas corpus and arrested numerous members of Congress who oppose him. And Cora has to work out a plan to get the Speaker safely out of the Capital and DC.

The stage is set for the failures of 2020 insurrection to be corrected. The morning on the 6th dawns cold but quiet. DC and Locke's team of loyalists have no clue about the storm that is Cora Walker in combat mode.

Holy crap. If this book doesn’t have you on the edge of your seat, nothing will. The history, the plot, the manipulation, the ‘who can I trust?’ questions in each chapter, the final reckoning. Not a pedestrian page in the book. Now I’ve read books that are so dense with plot-double cross-triple cross that it’s hard to keep the character’s loyalties straight. Where the action is so breathless, bombastic, and improbable to have even a hair’s-breath of reality.

Not this one. The step-by-step of Locke’s plan is frighteningly plausible and Cora’s response seems so realistic. And here’s what’s impressive: The is the author’s DEBUT NOVEL. Seriously? The maturity of writing, plot and character development is unreal. Now I like to read debut novels, maybe in hope of being on the front side of a ‘next big thing’. I remember reading Term Limits by a then unknown Vince Flynn and being blown away. Same for Brad Thor’s Lion of Lucerne and The Faithful Spy by Alex Berenson. In the one hour since finishing Second Term, I’m ready to lump Adams in with those heavy hitters.

I’ll plagiarize a line from Bum Phillips (former head coach of the Houston Oilers NFL team). When asked if Earl Campbell what the greatest running back in the league, Phillips said, “He may not be in a class by himself, but it doesn’t take long to call the roll.” Thinking today the class of current political thriller authors has a new student and hero: JM Adams and Cora Walker. In short: one of the very best debut political thrillers I have ever read. Let's just hope he's not a one-hit wonder.

Another winner in a long line of winners from Oceanview Publishing. Thanks to Netgalley for making the advance reader copy available.

Publishing date is currently set for 17 October 2023. Mark the date on your calendar.

East Coast Don

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