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Black Scorpion: The Tyrant Reborn


Black Scorpion: The Tyrant Reborn

written by Jon Land, created by Fabrizio Boccardi

Jon Land’s latest entry in the Seven Sins series, BLACK SCORPION, hits the ground running and never lets up. Just like the customized Lamborghini that Michael “The Tyrant” Tiranno drives, the novel hits high velocities, and you had better hang on around the many sharp turns that are presented throughout this action-driven plot.

Five years before the action of BLACK SCORPION, Michael saved Las Vegas from a terrorist attack. Mind you, this was a bit self-serving as he is the owner of the Seven Sins hotel and casino, as well as a hugely successful media and entertainment mogul. People come to his place from all over the world with expectations of world class accommodations and thrills --- everything from underwater suites with views of killer great white sharks to a man-made jungle that houses ferocious tigers.

What if all the success Michael has had can be contributed to one item in his possession? The object in question, a gold coin fashioned into a wearable medallion, has highly unique properties and a historic pedigree that puts it in huge demand. In fact, there are many who would kill --- and have killed --- to own it.

A quote from Abraham Lincoln sets the tone for BLACK SCORPION: “Nearly all men can stand adversity, but if you want to test a man’s character, give him power.” Power and control are at the center of the novel, and mere greed is not the sole impetus for this. The golden relic that was mentioned earlier played a part in Julius Caesar’s rise to power, and its legacy has been passed down through the centuries.

"BLACK SCORPION is a dynamite read from start to finish. Michael 'The Tyrant' Tiranno is the ideal protagonist --- hero, soldier, rebel, king."

It is in the past where the answers to the issues raised in this story lie. Michael’s father, Vito, is revealed to have had quite an interesting past that included much his own son was not aware of. At one point, following World War II, he adopted the guise of a Jewish citizen to help hunt down Nazi war criminals. The primary target of the hunt was one Hans Wolff, a notorious Nazi and key figure in this saga.

Michael’s father also unwittingly spawned the present-day terrorist group known as Black Scorpion. Human trafficking is just the tip of the iceberg for what this evil cabal is involved with. The head of the syndicate is known simply as Vladimir Dracu, a name that infers his possible heritage and relation to the infamous Vlad “The Impaler” Tepes. Vladimir and Michael also share an ironic relationship that will make readers gasp.

Joining Michael in his battle against Black Scorpion is his right-hand man and lead warrior, Alexander. There is also the love of his life, archaeologist Scarlett Swan. When she falls captive to Black Scorpion, things really pick up and the international flavor of the novel turns into a travelogue between Europe, Russia and the U.S. To further complicate matters, a tragedy occurs in Michael’s Vegas hotel when a forced power outage causes the occupant of one of the underwater suites to be violently killed by one of the sharks. When this individual is found to have been traveling under an assumed name and allegedly a member of Interpol, the focus of an FBI investigation lands squarely on Michael.

The tragic events at Seven Sins causes the value of its stock, as well as that of Michael’s entire empire, to drop drastically. This makes it easy picking for a shrewd wheeler dealer to buy up shares and emerge as a primary owner. Finding out who is behind this and making the link to the terrorist activities of Black Scorpion is a huge task for Michael and company, and one that keeps the novel’s action and intrigue consistently intense. Past meets present very quickly, and Michael’s gold coin is far from the only thing at risk.

BLACK SCORPION is a dynamite read from start to finish. Michael “The Tyrant” Tiranno is the ideal protagonist --- hero, soldier, rebel, king. It’s sort of like you morphed Bruce Wayne and the Liam Neeson character from the Taken films, which would just scratch the surface of this dynamic protagonist. Thankfully, with both film treatments and a D.C. Comics graphic novel in the works, we will be seeing much more of Mr. Tiranno. BLACK SCORPION is perfectly capped off with a cliffhanger ending that will have readers champing at the bit for the next installment in the series.

Reviewed by Ray Palen on April 10, 2015

Black Scorpion: The Tyrant Reborn
written by Jon Land, created by Fabrizio Boccardi

  • Publication Date: December 29, 2015
  • Genres: Adventure, Fiction, Suspense, Thriller
  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Forge Books
  • ISBN-10: 0765370913
  • ISBN-13: 9780765370914