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A presentation of latest Christian books to hit the stores

Title: The First Hostage

Author: J B Collins

ISBN-13: 978-1496406156

Publishing Date: December 29, 2015

Availability in London: Creation Bookstore and the Mustard Seed.

Available in Hardcover

"The president of the United States . . . is missing."


With these words, New York Times journalist J. B. Collins, reporting from the scene of a devastating attack by ISIS terrorists in Amman, Jordan, puts the entire world on high alert. The leaders of Israel and Palestine are critically injured, Jordan’s king is fighting for his life, and the U.S. president is missing and presumed captured.

As the U.S. government faces a constitutional crisis and Jordan battles for its very existence, Collins must do his best to keep the world informed while working to convince the FBI that his stories are not responsible for the terror attack on the Jordanian capital. And ISIS still has chemical weapons . . .

Struggling to clear his name, Collins and the Secret Service try frantically to locate and rescue the leader of the free world before ISIS's threats become a catastrophic reality Publisher's Description

Reader reviews submitted to Christianbook.com

Kristine, Littlefork MN
Wow! I just finished reading First Hostage by Joel Rosenberg and I find myself checking the news sites to see if it really happened. Joel writes a very realistic book which seems as though it could come straight from today's headlines. The novel is fast paced and I did not want to put it down. The character's are well developed and I was truly concerned for their welfare. This is a novel dealing with terrorism and therefore is quite brutal in places. I enjoyed the romance that carried through from The Third Hostage, the first J. B. Collins book. From the ending I believe there will be a third book, as several loose ends remain. :)

Melissa
I really have mixed emotions about this book.

It is definitely intense from the first page and doesnt give you a change to come up for air. One thing after another keeps happening and you wonder who you can trust and what will happen next.

I had a bit an issue with the writing style, I had trouble connecting with the character and I wonder if it was due to style of writing.

But, this is a book that will give you a lot to think about in light of the events in our world and will make you wonder what if this stuff really happened, its certainly possible.

Blooming with Books- Bloomer, WI
This is a fast-paced book that will keep the reader in suspense as to the outcome. How does one find a hostage when the perpetrators have such vast resources and means at their disposal? This is a book that will appeal to many as it is a contemporary setting. ISIS is a daily news story and this book looks at a what-if scenario that is not unbelievable.

This is the second J.B. Collins novel, but reading the first book The Third Target is not necessary to following this story. This is in fact the first book by Joel C. Rosenberg that I have ever read and I had no problem with following the story. Though I will admit I did order a copy of the first book (last night) as I enjoyed both this book and the writing of Mr. Rosenberg.

L C Johnson, Indiana
What occurs in this novel I learned from Joel Rosenbergs recent blog post happens six seconds after the close of the first book in the series, The Third Target. Before you begin either book plan on being glued to the action for hours because it is nonstop from start to finish. In some ways the evil that nations were fighting against defied description. The characters who fought to protect the innocent and leaders had actions, thoughts and decisions that were at times surprising.

J. B. Collins is living through more experiences of hell than he ever has had on any major news assignments because every time he turns around his life is on the line. Whether it is due to ISIS or other unknown assailants, J. B.s level of frustration grows as he cant reconcile faith in Jesus or his access to report the danger he witnesses firsthand. Trying to identify those who are backing ISIS and seeing how far they had infiltrated our government was extremely thought-provoking and added tension to the tale.

Israel is trying to help locate those who are guilty of causing mass destruction and those who have captured the President and hidden him. I read this novel in one sitting because I was very engrossed in the nail-biting tension and a possible romance for J. B. Plus the danger and loss of friends that J. B. had suffered was a high cost he never thought would be attached to his journalism career.

There is so much to this book and the prior novel that isnt revealed in the review, but I believe it is worthwhile for people to read and consider the picture though fictional that is being painted on the pages. As in Old Testament times, I see there is major spiritual warfare going on. Some of the various Muslim characters in the book are radical and others are peaceful, bringing the challenge to rightly identify the enemy.

I enjoyed the twists and turns of the plot along with those who come together regardless of differences to halt the killing some wished to unleash on people. I hope you take time to read both books as Joel Rosenberg is a well-informed Middle East columnist and author. Joel brings his understanding of current events into the world of fiction, which makes the stories more tantalizing and believable.

Floyd Johnson
Well written, but not my type of book. As I picked this book for review, I expected it to focus on the dangers faced by the President (and/or his family) after being kidnapped. Rather, it focused on the US armed forces and their allies process of locating and rescuing the kidnapped President.

The story held my interest, but I felt myself being drawn to the book because I had to review it, instead of its ability to hold my interest. The main character is a trusted (well, almost, anyhow) reporter with the New York Times and his attempt to cover the story of the century. J. B. Collins comes from a believing family, but he cannot find his way to his own faith. Though the story seems to draw him closer to his familys God, it is not clear to what extent he yet believes for himself.

Both the military focus and the lack of faith from any central character left me wanting more from the book. I realize that this is a personal opinion - I have friends who would thoroughly enjoy the military background of the plot. Without a strong, faithful, character to bring a lively spiritual dimension to the story, I felt ill at ease. Certainly, the author did try to bring a bit of history (past, present, and future) into the story as we explore the various Middle Eastern locations used to bring life to the book. I do need to give the author credit for writing a book that occasionally drove to the Internet for more details, if not to my Bible. There are some who will thrive with this books characters, plot, and themes. I did not.

Mark
This has been a book I have been looking forward to reading ever since I finished the book that preceded it, The Third Target; which ended on quite the cliff hanger.

I have often wished that sequels did what TV shows often do when continuing events from an episode that aired a while before, and do a "last time on....."; only for books...... and they actually did that in this book. There is a six-page preface that gives events from The Third Target, which I found helpful and awesome.

After the preface, the book immediately takes up where the last book left off. A massive airstrike and attack has been launched in the Middle East and the president of the Unites States is missing. At the center of it all is the main character from the first book, J.B. Collins; a news reporter for the New York times.

Awesome is a word that gets overused, but it is a worthy description of this book. It is obvious that Rosenberg knows his stuff: politics in the US and Middle East, ISIS, Muslims in general, relations between different countries, and military and political actions that would most likely take place and under what circumstances. He takes all of that and spins a fascinating tale that kept me on the edge of my seat. With ISIS growing in power, the events of the book do not seem all that unbelievable and could almost be taken from the news headlines of today.

Having a news reporter telling events in the first person adds an even more interesting dynamic to the story, and especially such a likable character.

I had to put the book down a few times, but it is one that I could have read through in one sitting had I had the time. This book is suspenseful, full of drama, action, military fighting, and everything else that Rosenberg is known for. It is possibly the best book I have read this year, and I highly recommend it..... but it should be read after The Third Target.

M S Wheels, Chicopee, MA
The First Hostage is a white-knuckle thrill ride you wont be able to put down. It blends front-page headlines with thrilling suspense. The first sentence grabs your attention. The president of the United States is missing. and doesn’t let go until the final page.

The First Hostage is the latest offering by author Joel C. Rosenberg. It is the second book in the series on the Islamic State involving New York Times foreign correspondent J. B. Collins as the main character. The book picks up where the previous book, The Third Target, leaves off. Collins is reporting from the scene of a devastating attack by ISIS terrorists on an Arab-Israeli peace summit in Amman, Jordan. Israeli and Palestinian leaders are critically injured, Jordan’s king is fighting for the survival of his kingdom. And the U.S. president is missing and presumed captured.

The book takes the reader along on the search for the President. You travel from the battlefield to underground bunker where plans are laid out to a military detention center and back again. J. B. Collins goes from covering the story to being in the center of the story himself.

As Rosenberg has proven in his previous books, he has the unique ability to blend fiction and non-fiction. He weaves the reality of current events in the Mideast with a fast paced, believable story. You find yourself on the edge of your chair wondering how the story will turn out.