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ALEX MASON

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Full Name: Alex Mason
Nationality: American
Organization: ODIN
Occupation Agent

Creator: David Archer, Blake Banner
Time Span: 2021 - 2024

ABOUT THE SERIES

Alex Mason is an agent of ODIN.

That acronym stands for "the Office of the Democratic Intelligence Network, a cooperative enterprise between the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Australia and New Zealand - the so-called Five Eyes." We learn right away that "?ODIN was housed on the eighteenth floor of the Commonwealth Building at 1300 Wilson Boulevard, in Arlington, Virginia. The fact that the Commonwealth Building did not have eighteen floors did not seem to be an issue for most people who, in any case, had no idea what ODIN was".

ODIN is said to be a very secret organization, known by those in the know in the intelligence community but largely unknown to the general public. When Mason needs to present identification, he produces some showing he worked for the Office of the Director of Intelligence".

Running ODIN is an interesting man known only "as the Chief (with a capital 'C') or occasionally as Nero" for a particularly amusing reason. This Chief stands "six-foot-six in his stockinged feet and I estimated his weight at about 420 lbs. Some of it was muscle. Most of it was very good food." He also is said to have "two eyebrows that could have doubled as an impressive handlebar moustache".

We are given a good idea of Mason's lifestyle when he talks about waking and immediately going for a morning swim in his "covered pool" and soon he is heading into the office in his Aston Martin DBS (MSRP $300k+). [Do not read derision into that sentence - read envy!]

Mason is very much a ladies' man but he is good-natured about it, willing to take a turn-down without any bad feelings and with a good amount of humor. He is decidedly a confirmed bachelor and quite happy to live alone, except for Manny Pacquiao, his cat who tolerates him. "If routine is the reason I am still alive, my cat is probably the reason I am still single."

Good Line:
- "In a life which is ruled by chaos it is important to have a solid routine, especially breakfast."
- Regarding a rumor Mason had heard about his boss, "It was probably not true, but the point of rumors like that is, they could be true."

BOOKS

Number of Books:12
First Appearance:2021
Last Appearance:2024

1 Odin Odin
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2021

"When an ODIN 5i agent based at the US Embassy in Manila, goes missing, and his encrypted laptop disappears with him, the whole ODIN structure is put in peril. Then the agents he was managing start to disappear one by one, and things start to look ugly. So Alex Mason is sent to Manila, and what he finds there is the growing shadow of Chinese imperialism threatening not only America’s presence in the Pacific, but the security of the whole Western World…"

2 Ice Cold Spy Ice Cold Spy
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2021

Why was Dr. Robert Magnusson murdered? More to the point, why was he murdered five hundred miles from anywhere, in the frozen wilderness of Greenland? And then there is the question of what he was doing seventy miles north of the UCLA base camp, where he should have been - and what were the instruments he had secretly set up and housed in the shack out there? And then again. there is the question of who killed him. When Alex Mason is sent to Greenland to find answers to these questions, what he finds is something far more harrowing and far reaching than anyone could have expected."
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3 Mason's Law Mason's Law
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2022

"To most people the threat of a nuclear holocaust was something that belonged to the years of the Cold War, something they associated with the United States and the Soviet Union, something that was laid to rest by Gorbachev and Reagan, back in the ‘80s, when the Berlin Wall came down. So when Alia Gallin’s murder was reported to ODIN agent Alex Mason, the last thing he thought of was that this could be part of the build up to a nuclear war. All Mason could think of was his rage, finding the killers and punishing them. Only his boss, the man they called Nero, had ordered him not to touch it: It was the Mossad’s investigation and the Mossad’s jurisdiction, not ODIN’s. But wherever he looked and whomever he turned to, all he could find were lies and betrayal."
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4 Assets And Liabilities Assets And Liabilities
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2022

"Top ODIN agent Mira Finn was murdered in Paris, her tortured body dragged from the Seine. A handful of people knew she was in France, fewer than that knew what her mission was. Two of them were Alex Mason and Nero, the chief of Odin itself, the other two were General Patrick O’Connor, chief security advisor to the President, and the President himself.
One of those four men was the traitor who had leaked Mira’s mission. Of the remaining three, only two were innocent. The other was the scapegoat."
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5 Russian Roulette Russian Roulette
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2022

"Six Tactical Nuclear Devices at six different locations – locations known to just one man. It might be a rucksack on a picnic trail, a suitcase at a bus station, a car parked in the heart of New York. But only one is real. Maximum stress and disruption for minimum cost.
The game is played by informing the media that five dummies and one dirty nuclear bomb have been planted around the USA. Clues to their whereabouts have been sent to the Pentagon. But here’s the rub: concealed in the clues is the trigger that will detonate the real device. Open the wrong trunk, pick up the wrong suitcase, and the fall out could be devastating – literally.
The CIA say it’s the Feds’ case. The Feds say it belongs to the CIA. The President says it’s ODIN’s, and it’s a job for Alex Mason."
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6 Executive Order Executive Order
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2022

"Helen Troy is in the race to become the first Female President of the United States. She is pretty, feminine, assertive and a guy’s guy kind of girl, who smokes cigars and drinks whisky with the best of’em. Everybody loves her; but nobody has heard of her till now and she has an uphill fight against some experienced heavy hitters. But that’s not her biggest problem.
Her biggest problem is a list; a list that includes members of the executive as well as senators, bankers and businessmen, Israeli officials, and her. And one by one everyone on that list is dying.
Mason and Gallin are assigned to protect her and find the authors of the list."
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7 Dead Man Talking Dead Man Talking
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2022

"Saul Epstein was used to trouble. When you’re the world’s most successful investigative journalist, and you devote your life to exposing the crimes of the great and the powerful, you learn to expect trouble. That’s why Saul was a recluse, that’s why he had no intimate circle, no close friends…
So one question facing Alex Mason and Captain Aila Gallin was, who was it who entered Saul’s apartment like an old friend and shot him in the face at pointblank range without flinching – just like a pro?"
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8 All The King's Men All The King's Men
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2023

"Colonel Ian Cameron, late of the CIA, launching his tell-all book at a major hotel in Manhattan, has been abducted in plain view on the streets. The only problem is, despite his revelations, and the heads that will roll because of them, it is in nobody’s interest to have Colonel Ian Cameron hurt. So what Nero, the head of ultra-secret intelligence organization ODIN wants Alex Mason to find out is…
Who the hell has the colonel?"
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9 Flashpoint Flashpoint
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2023

"In the wake of the Vietnam debacle, when the mighty USA was humiliated by Soviet-backed Vietcong, the CIA plotted to drag the USSR into a ‘Russian Vietnam’ in Afghanistan. The plan was such a success it led ultimately to the collapse of the Soviet Union. Now, forty years on, as Russia limps, scarred and crippled from the battlefields of Kherson, Donetsk and Kharkiv, Colonel Alexandrina Vitsin swears to drag the USA into an American Ukraine.
From her small dark office on Mokhovaya Street, in Moscow, she plots the unthinkable - war in western Europe. She will tear apart the European Union, inject Islam and Sharia law into that secular, democratic haven, and force the USA into an unwinnable conflict that will cripple NATO forever."
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10 Brotherhood of the Goat Brotherhood of the Goat
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2023

"When a leading international financier is murdered in his Beverly Hills mansion, at first it looks like just another daemon at work in the City of Angels. But when the ritual nature of the killing emerges, the FBI take an interest. And then the international connections start to emerge: the European Commission, high ranking officials in Hong Kong…and Iran. That’s when the file gets passed to ODIN, and Alex Mason.
When Mason starts to dig he soon realizes that the murder of a single financier is just the tip of the iceberg. Because wherever he looks, whomever he talks to, one word keeps repeating itself, and that word is ‘virus’."
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11 Dead Hot Dead Hot
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2023

"There is a time bomb ticking down toward a global extinction event. The bomb has a name, and everybody knows where it is. In fact, people pay to go and see it, and have picnics around it. It’s called the Yellowstone Caldera, and when it next blows it will probably take out mankind. There is another time bomb ticking, maybe on a much shorter fuse, and it is also leading up to an extinction event for humankind. This one will be an explosion of intelligence – artificial intelligence – that threatens to turn and look at its creator, and find him wanting.
When Alex Mason is sent by ODIN to investigate the death of anarchic genius Peter Justin at his cabin near the Yellowstone Caldera, what he finds is the ultimate nightmare. The two time bombs have linked and the countdown is on."
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12 Blood on Megiddo Blood on Megiddo
Written by David Archer, Blake Banner
Copyright: 2024

"A leak at GCHQ .. means that sensitive Allied and Israeli intelligence is being fed to Iran and Israel’s wider enemies. ODIN, the Five Eyes’ ultra-secret Special Operations Office, has teamed up their best operative, Alex Mason, with the Mossad’s Captain Aila Gallin to investigate and plug the leak. There’s just one problem…
Their prime suspect has been assassinated. Was he killed by the very people he was selling information to? Or had he stumbled on the source of the leaks and was about to blow the whistle? In either case the method of the killing was bizarre, and the fact that his cell phone and his computer were wiped clean, even of their operating systems, within minutes of his death speaks to a level of sophistication well beyond the means of Hamas or Iran."
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MY COMMENTS

The pedigree for this series is a darned impressive one. Two authors got together to create the protagonist and his three (so far) adventures. These two fellows already had a couple of different action-packed, exciting series to their credit and yet they have found the time to give us Alex Mason. I think thanks are in order.

Mason as a character is a hoot. Bit too good at times, and a bit too full of himself at times, maybe. But then he does pull off the seemingly impossible so maybe a touch of hubris is called for.

Whether he is justified in his attitude, the tales about him are well worth spending a few hours reading.

GRADE

My Grade: B+

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