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The Chameleon Code by John Mitchell

Title: The Chameleon Code (Jack McGill #1)

Author: John Mitchell

Published on: 23rd June 2020

Genre: Mystery and Thrillers

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Rating: 4 out of 5.

The Chameleon Code is the first book in Jack McGill thriller series. The story begins with the events leading to Lisa’s kidnapping. Lisa is kept in an unknown facility for weeks before meeting Petsnov. Meanwhile, Lisa’s parents are worried as they haven’t heard from her for over three weeks. They approach Jack McGill, an ex-cop turned security consultant for help.

Emma, Lisa’s younger sister joins Jack in France and together, they go looking for Lisa. Jack soon realizes they are being followed by goons. Lisa’s family is under surveillance but Jack does not know why; Lisa was just an ordinary research scientist working in the lab.

The story alternates between France and Russia. The France part of the story is all about stalker goons, Emma’s kidnapping, Lisa’s shady colleague and Jack requesting the help of his former colleagues in rescuing Emma. Meanwhile, in Russia, Lisa is given an ultimatum – either work for us or see your family die. Lisa is an employee of the ESA and was involved in taking cyber security of the satellites to the next level. Her code was supposed to be impenetrable to hackers. But now she is forced to work to a businessman who wants to use her code for his benefits (illegal activities).

As a first in the series, this book has certainly managed to capture my attention. I really liked the concept of an ex-cop turned security consultant saving the day. The characters are well-portrayed but there is a little scope for improvement here. The suspense was a little low – especially in the second half of the series. Or rather, the tension built up in the first half of the book did not do justice to the way things proceeded in the second half. Some more action in the second half would have made the book a page-turner.

Also, a little niggle here. Until 80% through, Jack is planning Lisa’s rescue. Instead of revealing the mission plan via talks to the readers, showing it in action would have been better. The ending seemed a little abrupt – too many things happening at once and before you know, The End.

Overall, The Chameleon Code is an engaging mystery. I really liked the story and I am looking forward to reading the next book in this series.


I received an ARC from Reedsy Discovery in exchange for an honest and unbiased opinion.

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