Tim Green,
The Fourth Perimeter
(Time Warner, 2002)

I am going to admit that I am biased towards audiobooks before I start this review. I love the fact that I can enjoy a tale while driving in the car. And when the books are well written, I can picture all the details necessary to complete my own mental movie of the story. Fortunately, this was the case with The Fourth Perimeter by Tim Green.

The Fourth Perimeter is a modern-day thriller that starts out with the seduction and murder of a young Secret Service agent, Collin Ford. While authorities rule his death a suicide, Collin's father, Kurt Ford, is led to believe otherwise. You see, Kurt, now the CEO of a multi-billion-dollar computer technology company, used to be a Secret Service agent as well. While it has been years since he has been in the field, his instincts are still sharp. And Ford's instinct tells him his son would not kill himself.

With the help of a former college roommate who is still in the Secret Service, Ford discovers the recent and suspect deaths of several other young agents. What did they all have in common? They were all part of the Fourth Perimeter of protection surrounding the U.S. President. This perimeter consists of the men and woman who run the closest line of security around the leader of the free world. And these particular young agents who have died were apparently on duty when the President was engaged in a secret meeting at a remote Maryland farmhouse.

Ford is set on revenging the death of his son and killing whomever was responsible -- even if that individual is the President himself. Join Ron Perlman (film credits include Enemy at the Gates and Blade II) as he narrates Ford's investigation of what truly happened at this secret meeting and why his son was murdered. Will Ford avenge his son's death? Will he be able to break through the Fourth Perimeter to get to the man he believes is responsible? Even if he does, will he survive? If you have approximately six hours to listen to this story, you can find out.

The Fourth Perimeter is well written and equally well narrated. Perlman has the perfect voice to narrate a thriller of this type. He is adept at changing his voice to make the main characters distinct during dialogue. While some of the accompanying soundtrack is overbearing, most of it does a good job of setting the mood for any particular scene. The story seems predictable at times, yet will undoubtedly take you down a few unexpected twists along the way.

You might know Green as the author of The Letter of the Law. If not, The Fourth Perimeter would be a decent introduction to his writing. While the audiobook is an abridged version of the story, Perlman makes it a tale worth listening to. This book has solid entertainment value and is worth picking up. I would like to see it translated to the big screen someday (so I can compare it to my mental movie).

[ by Wil Owen ]
Rambles: 30 May 2002

Buy it from Amazon.com.