Featured Review: ‘Amira’ by Matthew Betley


A fan-favorite character gets her own spinoff vehicle in this action-packed novella from Rules of War (2019) author Matthew Betley.

Picking up some ten months after the conclusion of his last novel, Rules of War, Betley wastes no time turning up the heat in his first-ever novella, which follows CIA operative Amira Cerone as she awakens bound to a chair in a hotel room at the National Harbor. Struggling to remember what happened and how she got there, Amira must quickly put the pieces together in hopes of escaping, but that’s only just the beginning.

Confronted by past demons, including the man who recruited her to the CIA, Amira suddenly finds herself knee-deep in an assassination plot to kill the director of the Central Intelligence Agency. With no easy way out, Amira knows that the only solution is “ruinous violence,” her specialty, and sets about fighting back before it’s too late . . . 

Stuffed with more action than most full-length novels, Betley puts on a show here, reminding readers why he’s one of the more talented writers in the game today. Amira, an early fan-favorite and standout from his popular Logan West series, is an intriguing and complex character who deserved her own story, and now that she’s got one, readers won’t be disappointed. From untold backstory to seeing her unfiltered internal thoughts, Betley fleshes out his new protagonist wonderfully, adding plenty of soul to the ass-kicking. On top of that, Amira is sharply plotted and feels much bigger than its 140-page count, making it an absolute steal of a deal at its discounted price.

lastly, without giving anything away, fans hoping for a Logan West cameo will see both him and John Quick return for an important action sequence that’ll no doubt leave many hungry for the next installment of Betley’s flagship series.

Leave it to Matthew Betley to pack a whole book’s worth of action and suspense into one rip-roaring, relentless novella. Amira is a must for fans of the Logan West thrillers, and anyone in search of an unputdownable reading experience.

Book Details

Author: Matthew Betley
Series: Amira #1
Pages: 528 (Hardcover)
Release Date: April 6, 2021
Real Book Spy Rating: 9.0/10



Praised as “One of the hardest working, most thoughtful, and fairest reviewers out there” by #1 New York Times bestselling author Lisa Scottoline, Ryan Steck has “quickly established himself as the authority on mysteries and thrillers” (Author A.J. Tata). Steck also works full-time as a freelance editor and pens a monthly thriller column for CrimeReads. Additionally, he co-hosts ThrillerTalk, a new podcast with K.J. Howe. For more information, be sure to follow him on Twitter and Facebook. He currently lives in Southwest Michigan with his wife and their six children.


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