agent_keats_bk_cp agent_keats_bk_snb agent_keats_bk_hh
Full Name: John Sterling
Codename: Agent Keats
Nationality: British
Organization: British Secret Service
Occupation Agent

Creator: John Francis
Time Span: 2014 - 2015


John Sterling, Agent Keats, is an agent with the British Secret Service.

The year is 1952. The sun was still never setting on the British Empire. A new monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, had just assumed the throne. Stalwart men, and some women, like Sterling walked the dark streets and alleyways finding the cause of, and sorting out, now Her Majesty's troubles and there were many to be fixed.

In the Secret Service there were a trio of agents who were "authorized to kill at their own discretion" and in cold blood if it be determined necessary. They were known as the 'Dead Poets' because each had been assigned the codename of a famous, and now long dead, poet. The one we follow is named after John Keats (1795-1821). Those picked were considered the very best at what they do though the sort of missions they were given, their life expectancy was not rated that high.

Before being chosen for this position, Sterling had served in Naval Intelligence for some time, assigned towards the end to a special commando unit nicknamed 30 AU and the action he saw in that outfit made the shift to the Secret Service and being a Dead Poet not that much of a change.

Sterling is described as "a handsome man, with dark hair, a comma of which fell across one brow, and distant blue-grey eyes that held a sort of cold cruelty about them. A scar nearly as long as a finger ran down his right cheek, as if left by a single tear, a permanent reminder of some past regret. This, combined with his hard eyes, kept Sterling from being too handsome. A short upper lip rested over a wide mouth." One interesting idiosyncrasy of his: he often wore loafers because "he detested shoestrings".


Number of Books:3
First Appearance:2014
Last Appearance:2015

1 Skull & Bones Skull & Bones
Written by John Francis
Copyright: 2014

The year is 1952. Strange coins from China are poppin up in Hong Kong connected to the disappearance of several ships. An agent was sent to investigate and then he disappeared as well. Agent Keats, John Sterling, is sent to learn what happened to both and he will find there are more than a couple of odd characters on hand to make his life difficult.
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2 Chinese Puzzle Chinese Puzzle
Written by John Francis
Copyright: 2014

Again in 1952, John Sterling, Agent Keats, is in Hong Kong when he is ordered to look into the matter of the DRAGON. That is an organization from deep inside China responsible for coded radio transmissions which were related to the deaths of several Western agents in that part of the world. Sterling was to find out more as it was feared this was a prelude to involvement by China in the Korean Conflict.
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3 High Hopes High Hopes
Written by John Francis
Copyright: 2015

To find who is behind a synthetic hallucenigenic drug flooding the London streeets, John Sterling - Agent Keats - must follow the clues to Greece where he finds himself right in the middle of a turf war by two powerful gansts.
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His name is "Sterling. John Sterling". He is a British secret agent with a license to kill. He is fond of ordering martinis made with vodka, "shaken, please". Sound familiar?

I took these facts, and a few others along the way, as showing this series was an homage to the great Bond, not a rip-off. And in that regard, these do a very good job.

I also congratulate the author for giving the books a kind of travelogue feel, much like Fleming often did. Again, these are well done and the information of the places Sterling goes, back in the early 50's, to is quite interesting.

So, if I am right about the intent of the author, congrats to him! If not, well, these are fun adventures nevertheless.


My Grade: B+


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