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5/5 ⭐ | The Ryzhkov Vendetta (Mark Ericksen #2) by Barry L. Becker

“The Ryzhkov Vendetta” is author Barry L. Becker’s second novel in the Mark Ericksen thriller series. While book one, “The Ericksen Connection” brought with it nuclear suitcases, book two packs a punch full of cyanide in forms I never knew possible. From California to Russia, Sweden, and scenic stops in between, this quick and thrilling read brought non-stop action page after page.

Despite being the second in the series, “The Ryzhkov Vendetta” read successfully as a standalone. While nary a moment of calm, this second book brought friends from Mossad, the American alphabet of agencies, and Russians, as Ryzhkov sought to carry out his agenda. Kicking off with the wedding of Mark Ericksen and Kate McDonald, the honeymoon ends quickly as Anthony Ferrari soon puts a target on Mark’s, and his friends’ back. Jam packed with assassins, evasive actions, and plans; readers are taken across continents as the spy games continue. From the luxurious Menlo Park to Moscow and many European cities in between, “The Ryzhkov Vendetta” keeps readers on the edge of their seats as Mark hopes to outrun the hit on his head, and that of his friends’, for good.

Becker is so talented at bringing his own behind the scenes knowledge to the forefront of his novels. Whether it be character descriptions, to industry insights, his books read like a movie as the scenes play across the reader’s mind. The political games, adversaries, and acquaintances wind together into a fast-paced espionage thriller. Read this as a perfect complement to book one, or pick it up as a standalone, either way you are sure to enjoy the ride.

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