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Al-thar

Sean Dow

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  • Paperback: 472 pages
  • Dimensions: 5.00" x 8.00"
  • ISBN: 978-1-63413-944-1
  • Publication Date: 2016-03-22
  • Two Harbors Press

Availability: In stock

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Paperback$15.95

Al-thar

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Life isn’t easy after preventing what would have been the most disastrous terror attack the world had ever seen. Secreted away in a remote Philippine village Dr. Brent Holcomb is blissfully unaware of how close his enemies are to finding him and exacting their gruesome revenge.

That respite comes to a violent end in a vicious attack on his new home. As Brent realizes he can no longer run from those who are hunting him he starts his own course of al-thar (revenge). Can Brent top himself and bring the ruthless mastermind to an end, along with his council of terrorists? Join Dr. Holcomb and his cast of friends as they try to pull off the most improbable con ever conceived, and to do it as the clock races toward the final destruction of America and the beginning of the new caliphate in this timely novel that one reviewer said forced her to remind herself that it was a piece of fiction.

In Al-Thar, Sean Dow delivers a sequel with even more action and intrigue than A Leafy Green World.


You're reviewing: Al-thar

What do you call a thriller that melds politics with terrorism? A book full of suspense that I couldn't put down! The author intricately infuses detailed character background with plot twists and turns. I didn't suspect, but one of my favorite characters was Brent Holcomb. From the beginning, it seems as if Brent is too cerebral. However, you can't judge a person on the outside after all. Brent is a man of many talents, and that doesn't always come across. But he has tendency to follow through on his word, and shows compassion to others.

And important lesson in the book for me, was the generosity of people who had less material wealth in life. Their loyalty and sacrifice could humble even the most arrogant among us. We are shown how the poor and marginalized are treated around the world. This also included the deplorable treatment of women in Afghanistan. As it turns out, never discount anyone because guidance comes in many forms.

It was a pleasure to always be kept on my toes, just like the characters were on high alert. In an effort to be one step ahead, we are taken from The Philippines to Sierra Leone. The mission and lives of thousands are at stake. Which side will prevail? — Linda


I really enjoyed this book. The first page got me interested and by the second page I was hooked and couldn't put it down. I have not read the first book in the series yet, but am going to go back and read it now. I have always enjoyed suspenseful stories and this one was not a disappointment. I like the fact that the author is quite straight forward about things that can and are happening all over the world. Terrorism is a real thing and there are too many people that want to prefer to think about it as a minor problem. I will caution anyone who is thinking about reading this that there are indeed some very graphic passages. So, if that is going to bother you, don't read this. Otherwise, it is an extremely good book worthy of your time. I noticed that one reviewer said something about skimming over parts and I think that is a very good idea for someone who likes this kind of book but can't handle the violence. Overall, I would recommend this book. I would simply warn anyone with a queasy stomach. I give this book 2 thumbs up and look forward to reading more of Mr. Dow's works.—Lisa Komnick


Sean Dow's "Al-Thar" is an unsuspecting sequel to "A Leafy Green World". While I found his previous work to be fun, quirky, and suspenseful, "Al-Thar" seemed to be more straight up thriller. With most sequels, I tend to enjoy already having a relationship with the characters and a comprehension of the author's writing style and voice. Dow seemed to turn up the creativity in this one. Events were occurring faster while plot twists were more action packed. Dow up'd the ante and anyone who is a fan of Dr. Holcomb's unmanageable life will be satisfied.

Terrorism continues to be a harsh reality and not everyone can thread this theme in their stories with such ease. "Al-Thar" is able to incorporate the uneasiness and lack of civility and use it as a successful vehicle for the backdrop of his story. I didn't find the characters too complex or multi-layered. Perhaps this is Dow's signature style where everyone I was introduced to was interesting enough for me to be marginally invested but not so to feel emotionally attached to their conflicts. I think if I was, I would not have enjoyed this book as much as I did. The appeal for me was to be able to take a step back and savor this bizarre world of geo-political revenge. It felt like the 'everyday' man's "Bourne Identity". —DOTRAZN


This is my first fictional book that I have read that has terrorism as a main element. I must say that I was very impressed with the storyline and characters. Every detail was extremely intriguing, and there were no parts where I was bored. This is almost close to the perfect definition of a true page turner. The characters were well developed, and Mr. Dow did an amazing job at making sure that the reader got a delicious taste of each character's point of view. It was similar to reading the same story from different perspectives, which was pretty cool. The reality and violence of it all really tops the characteristics. And then there's that stunning fact that sits on everything: this is realistic. As scary as it may sound or seem, it's an inevitable truth. All around, it was a fantastic read that I'm sure the next person would love. —Dannie Moffitt


I have not yet read the first book in the series but that did not hinder me one bit. The characters are developed enough and the important events from the first book are summarized so any reader can jump right into book 2 of the series. The chapters jump around from location and characters which I struggled with a bit. The locations were no problem, as I like books that move around to keep me interested. The character changes is where I had the most difficulty and I think this was due to the nature of their names. I'm not well versed in middle eastern names so keeping them straight with their individual plot specifics was challenging for me. On several occasions I had to reread about a character. Another reviewer commented on the descriptive violence and I will agree that it was quite graphic. I more or less expected that from the nature of the book and just skipped over the sections if they were too disturbing. My husband is retired army (20 years service and 13 overseas tours) so I feel I might have a more realistic view of how some of these countries and people view the US. I'm not by any meaning saying that all middle eastern people and countries are out for America. However, terrorism does exist and I feel this book might enlighten those that turn a blind eye to its existence. I recommend this book to most people. Again, I caution about the violence but those parts can be skimmed over without missing the story. It was well written and eye opening.—K. Allison Davison

Sean Dow

Sean Dow is a practicing pulmonary and critical care specialist enjoying his new life in Great Falls, MT.

He was born in Iowa City, Iowa, and raised in Topeka, Kansas. He graduated from the University of Kansas School of Medicine, where he also did his internal medicine internship and residency. He completed his sub-specialty training in Tucson, Arizona, at the University of Arizona College of Medicine.

After finishing his fellowship, Dr. Dow began a solo practice in the high desert community of Klamath Falls, Oregon—an understated gem of the world. The people of that fine Northwestern community hold a dear spot in his heart.

When not practicing or writing, Dr. Dow can be found in the kitchen or on a mountain stream with his favorite fly rod, two interests that often show up in his novels.

Please visit Dr. Dow’s website, Seandow.com, to read more about his novels, or to reach him through e-mail, Facebook, or Twitter, and share comments, or stories of the Northwest.

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