For fans of the international thriller Code Word series, that great day has arrived. Code Word: Persepolis is here! This latest novel by Doug Norton is a breathtaking, fast-paced, and tightly written story that will whip the reader from the cockpit of fighter jets to heart pounding sea battles on the Persian Gulf and into the intrigue of the back rooms of nations’ capitol buildings. The action comes to you fast and furiously off the pages of what could be tomorrow’s newspapers.

Followers of the Code Word series will again encounter Secretary of Homeland Security Ray Morales, as he enters into new confrontation with his Iranian antagonist, General Ghorbani. Then he encounters the dark side of human nature as a U.S. senator seeks revenge against him for his past actions while serving as commandant of the U.S. Marine Corps. Here, the author plummets us into the hidden, inner workings of everyday relationships in Congress. From there the action explodes into conflict between Israel and Iran in the air and on the sea. carrier battle groups and a U.S. battleship maneuver for combat action in the Straits of Hormuz. Chinese warships arrive on the scene. Diplomatic scheming ensues as leaders fly from Washington to Tel Aviv to Tehran. As the story approaches its conclusion, the rapid and frenzied confrontations just might leave you breathless.

Norton once again proves himself to be a master of the creation of international thrillers. After a lifelong career as a U.S. naval officer commanding ships at sea as well as years spent in high-level national security meetings, he weaves together finely crafted characterization with tautly described battle scenes. Throughout the story, Norton envelops the readers in the fog of war and takes us into the intimate lives of his characters where he explores their pride, ambitions, fears, love and hate relationships, and the delusions often experienced by leaders.

Norton ranks with the best of authors in this book and displays the creativity of a Grisham and the thrills and technical knowledge of a Clancy. You will find a superbly written diplomatic plot in Code Word: Persepolis that anticipates headlines as the nation of Iran seeks to resurrect the spirit of the ancient Persian Empire.

Code Word: Persepolis
By Doug Norton, Magothy River Press (2021)

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