reviewed by Cy Wyss
The Third Option by Ernie Briginshaw is a timely story of U.S. paranoia in this age of political partisanship. Basically, someone is making possibly credible threats against an unnamed and unpopular president and a young Canadian soccer player gets blamed after overzealous paramilitaries extract a fictitious confession of his involvement. The multitude of characters was well-drawn, each compelling in their own right. Some of the myriad FBI personnel seemed indistinguishable, but all the major characters stood out like lightning rods.
I really liked The Third Option. It was a smooth read with an inventive and satisfying plot and a sympathetic protagonist. I especially enjoyed the settings, from NYC to Washington, to Ontario. Briginshaw has a way of bringing a place to life through little details. The characters also really stood out for me, and I felt every interaction and quirk was immersive and believable. I was never taken out of the story with jarring editing errors or non-sequiturs. An easy, enjoyable read.