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Full Name: Mark Aldin
Nationality: American
Organization: CIA
Occupation Other - Professor

Creator: Rik Thistle
Time Span: 2017 - 2018


Mark Aldin is a consultant to the CIA.

This 42-year-old college professor who teaches about Middle Eastern languages and cultures at UCLA routinely receives requests for assistance, and has done so for some time, from the Agency when obscure texts and messages deemed likely important exceed the skillsets of its numerous full-time analysts and of the impressive set of computers at its call. As we are told, "Mark translates documents for the CIA when they can't be done by a computer. Many documents use subtle references or historical facts that only a Ph.D. in Near Eastern Languages can decipher, or so the CIA believes. Mark knows he is one of several 'experts' who work on documents for a handsome fee.  It's a great gig and he loves doing the research."

Aldin comes about his extensive knowledge of such matters as a result of his upbringing. He came to the United States when he was 12 years old, traveling with his father and grandmother. The family last name of Nasir al-Din was changed to Aldin and he took the first name of Mark to better fit in. He attended college on a full scholarship to Stanford where he "ran track and majored in Middle Eastern Language, Literature and Culture".

After graduating from college, Aldin joined the Navy and immediately applied for and was accepted by the SEALS. He saw action in Afghanistan, Iraq, and Syria before leaving the Service to return to school to earn his Masters and then his Ph.D.

Aldin is fluent in six languages including Farsi, Arabic, and Afghani. One language that he is especially skilled in is Aramaic, the tongue thought used by Jesus of Nazareth and still used in a small part of Jordan where his grandmother grew up from whom he learned it as a young boy.

Aldin is described as 6'2" tall with long hair cut just at the collar and often a week's work of dark beard. He is said have emerald eyes and to be "ruggedly handsome, smart, and [with] a new photographic memory". He is a divorced father of two.

Though Aldin is technically just a consultant, he will find that his involvement in matters of concern to the Agency will see his participation be considerably more. That is where his prior training as a SEAL will prove quite useful.


Number of Books:3
First Appearance:2017
Last Appearance:2018

1 Jihadi Red Death Jihadi Red Death
Written by Rik Thistle
Copyright: 2017

Working as a linguist on behalf of the CIA, Mark Aldin, an expert in 1st Century Aramaic, is called in because Iran and al-Qaeda are using it in low-tech secret messages about their operations. Aldin learns of a plot to use a pin-point virus to kill off 90% of the world's population.
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2 Jihadi Black Widow Jihadi Black Widow
Written by Rik Thistle
Copyright: 2018

Recently associated with a new anti-terror team created by the President, Mark Aldin is ready to work with his teammates against al-Qaeda even as that terrorist group readies a plan to kidnap the President's daughter and his grandchildren. At the same time, a childhood friend of Aldin from Syria is putting into play his own attempt to get revenge on Aldin
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3 Jihadi White Christmas Jihadi White Christmas
Written by Rik Thistle
Copyright: 2018

As a new man sits behind the President's desk, Mark Aldin and his teammates find themselves in a new fight against a group of terrorists striking at America in a series of different attacks.
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     As someone who enjoyed learning languages, I really enjoyed 'meeting' Mark Aldin. Of course, Aldin goes way, way, way beyond my very minor abilities and gets to use his skills working with the CIA and having exciting adventures like I never did, which, considering people try to kill him, is alright with me.

     The writing style of the author, Rik Thistle, makes reading these books a very fast and enjoyable experience. He uses the present tense, which always annoys me, but with his work, it is not so bad.

     If you are looking what a good diversion for a few hours, you cannot go wrong with these.


My Grade: B


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