Buckley, William F. Saving the Queen.
Blackford Oakes is….
….America’s James Bond.
There are differences, though. Whereas Bond has gadgets to get the job done, Oakes relies on wit and old-fashioned American swagger. There are some uncomfortable similarities, though. Both have a penchant for women. This actually ties into a deeper question that isn’t often addressed directly in the Bond universe: how do we understand breaking one moral command (chastity) to pursue another: saving lives, killing communists (which are, incidentally, the same thing)?
The book begins slowly, as it must begin with the young Blackfor Oakes, his time in America, and his brief schooling in England. After his CIA training, the novel picks up in intensity and ends in a thrilling dogfight.