lee_john_bk_jail lee_john_bk_arctic lee_john_bk_ocean lee_john_bk_extractor lee_john_bk_outback
Full Name: John Lee
Series Name: The Extractor
Nationality: American
Organization: None
Occupation Other - Kidnap Resuce

Creator: J. T. Brannan
Time Span: 2017 - 2020


John Lee is a hostage rescue expert.

While Lee has not been in the business for that long, he has already amassed an impressive record; when we meet him in the first recorded adventure his percentage of successes stood at 100 and he works very diligently to not let it slide.

Helping him as part of his unofficial 'team' is Phoenix De Maio, a young woman who was without doubt a computer whiz, a graduate of MIT who also happened to be the daughter of one of France's wealthiest industrialists. De Maio is also one of Lee's successes and once she was free from those who had kidnapped her in Marseilles, she "had begged to help him with his work" and after he agreed, "they'd operated side by side ever since, although their relationship often veered away from the strictly professional".

Also part of those helping him is Alexandra Grayson, an "ex-sports agent who handled the business side of things for Lee". And Marcus Hartman, a former US Army quartermaster who is also trying to convince Lee to go hi-tech. And Yukio Mabuni, Lee's weapons and specialist equipment guru who was an officer for a time with the CIA's Directorate of Science and Technology and a firm believer in always taking a "technologically-enhanced answer", something Lee definitely was not.

That last part makes it sound like Lee is a Luddite and there is a fair amount of truth but in his defense, Lee's "prior work with the US Air Force's Special Tactics Unit ensured that he was well aware of what capabilities were out there, and how to use most of it" but at this stage of his life, Lee "had gone back to basics" because when things "got down to the nitty-gritty, face-to-face stuff, Lee wanted to keep things old-school. He'd tried the modern way and it wasn't for him".

It is interesting to note that one of the ways that Lee differed in attitude from his team, especially Mabuni, is that Lee refused to kill people. "Not anymore, anyway; hist past had left him scarred and he had vowed never to kill again."

Lee and his team has, as stated, a very impressive track record and he does not have much trouble finding work - or rather it finding him - but he could be doing much better if he allowed more fanfare from his successes but he prefers not. The reason was: "Lee himself was still wanted by the US military for allegedly going AWOL. It wasn't strictly true - Lee had asked to resign after his last disastrous, psychically-damaging mission in Iraq, but had been refused - but he was still a figure of some controversy. The CIA had spread damaging rumors about him, and nobody knew what to believe. The military, the intelligence services and the government said one thing - that he was a deserter of the worst sort - while the popular press, aided by the constant work of Alexandra Greyson, said quite another. While some denounced him as a traitor, others hailed him as a hero. Like most things in life, Lee knew that the truth might well be found somewhere in the middle."

Lee's transition to his current line of work is an interesting one. The son of an American career diplomat and as a result having lived in numerous places around the world, most notably the Philippines, South Korea, Japan, and China. From an early age Lee craved physical activity and that got him training in a wide variety of things: "swimming, diving, athletics, gymnastics, fencing, horseback riding, shooting, skiing, snowboarding, free-running, even skydiving, he did them all". His greatest love was the martial arts where he learned Escrima, Kali, Taekwondo, Hapkido, Judo, Aikido, Karate, and "even a little Ninjutsu". Then there was the time he spent as a young man working as a stunt man for Hong Kong movies. And then the military and the CIA and now hostage rescue.


Number of Books:5
First Appearance:2017
Last Appearance:2020

1 The Extractor The Extractor
Written by J. T. Brannan
Copyright: 2017

"John Lee is hired to track down a missing research team from the University of Chicago. On a mission to the Amazon to locate a lost tribe, and the mysterious plant that is said to make its members all but immune to disease, the team have not been heard from in weeks. But what Lee finds in the rainforest is more than anyone bargained for – he not only has to battle against the incredible natural dangers of the Amazon, but he is also forced to contend with drugs gangs and their hidden laboratories, and another group who are tracking the research team and the lost tribe for their own nefarious ends."
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2 Mission: Outback Mission: Outback
Written by J. T. Brannan
Copyright: 2018

"John Lee and his team are hired by Tom Taylor, an Australian media baron, after Taylor's twin sons have been kidnapped by a criminal gang who are now holding them for ransom. A planned exchange has already failed when the Australian Federal Police tried to move in and arrest the suspects at the drop-off point, and the gang have fled with the twins into the vast reaches of the Outback. No longer wanting to trust the authorities, Taylor believes that only John and his specialist team have a chance of getting them back."
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3 Mission: Arctic Mission: Arctic
Written by J. T. Brannan
Copyright: 2019

"John Lee is hired by the Russian government to locate Yuri Yushenkov, one of the country's top nuclear scientists. Yushenkov is believed to have been kidnapped by the Russian Mafia, and intelligence suggests that they do not want a ransom - instead, they are building a nuclear device that they wish to sell to the highest bidder."
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4 Mission: Jailbreak Mission: Jailbreak
Written by J. T. Brannan
Copyright: 2019

John Lee "is hired to rescue a man from the infamous La Modelo Prison in Bogota, Columbia. The facility is a hellhole, with 11,000 inmates split between left-wing rebels on one side and right-wing government supporters on the other, and easy access to guns, and even grenades.
Lee is told that the man has been wrongly convicted, and needs to be rescued before one side or another kills him. However, when Lee arrives in Columbia with his team, he learns that the man is actually Oscar Rodriguez Montoya, a leading cartel drug lord, and he refuses to go ahead with the job. The cartel won't take no for an answer, however, and take steps to force his hand."
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5 Mission: Ocean Rescue Mission: Ocean Rescue
Written by J. T. Brannan
Copyright: 2020

When the Santa Maria II, the world's newest, and largest, cruise ship, is hijacked with thousands onboard, a military rescue is certain to endanger innocent civilians. John Lee is asked to sneak aboard the ship, assume the role of a passenger, and stop them from the inside.
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I had major issues with another series that this author, J. T. Brannan, did that fit into this compendium. While the writing style was pretty darn good, and it is equally good in this series as well, the things that happened in the Mark Cole angered me enough to not like it. So I was curious how I would feel about these dealing with John Lee.

Much better, as it turns own. Which is a good thing and not unexpected as I really like his Colt Ryder - the Thousand Dollar Man - non-spy action adventure series. I may have had trouble with the first series but there is no doubt that Mr. Brannan knows how to write action.


My Grade: B+


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