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1994: Texas Ranger Jim Strong investigates a mass murder on a dusty freight train linked to a mysterious, missing cargo for which no record exists.The Present: His daughter, fifth generation Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong, finds herself on the trail of that same cargo when skeletal remains are found near an excavation site in the Texas desert. She’s also dealing with the afte 1994: Texas Ranger Jim Strong investigates a mass murder on a dusty freight train linked to a mysterious, missing cargo for which no record exists.The Present: His daughter, fifth generation Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong, finds herself on the trail of that same cargo when skeletal remains are found near an excavation site in the Texas desert. She’s also dealing with the aftermath of a massacre that claimed the lives of all the workers at a private intelligence company on her watch.These two cases are connected by a long buried secret, one that men have killed and died to protect. Caitlin and her outlaw lover Cort Wesley Masters must prove themselves to be as strong as steel to overcome a bloody tide that has been rising for centuries.


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1994: Texas Ranger Jim Strong investigates a mass murder on a dusty freight train linked to a mysterious, missing cargo for which no record exists.The Present: His daughter, fifth generation Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong, finds herself on the trail of that same cargo when skeletal remains are found near an excavation site in the Texas desert. She’s also dealing with the afte 1994: Texas Ranger Jim Strong investigates a mass murder on a dusty freight train linked to a mysterious, missing cargo for which no record exists.The Present: His daughter, fifth generation Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong, finds herself on the trail of that same cargo when skeletal remains are found near an excavation site in the Texas desert. She’s also dealing with the aftermath of a massacre that claimed the lives of all the workers at a private intelligence company on her watch.These two cases are connected by a long buried secret, one that men have killed and died to protect. Caitlin and her outlaw lover Cort Wesley Masters must prove themselves to be as strong as steel to overcome a bloody tide that has been rising for centuries.

30 review for Strong As Steel

  1. 4 out of 5

    Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede

    I was introduced to Caitlin Strong in Strong Cold Dead and I just love that book. Since then have I read the book after Strong to the Bone and now the latest one Strong as Steel. Caitlin Strong followed in her father and grandfather's (and great grandfather's etc.) footsteps and become a Texas Ranger. One can say she was born to be one and she's a tough woman that grew up learning how to shot rather than playing girly games. In this book, she and her lover Cort Wesley Master faced with a mystery I was introduced to Caitlin Strong in Strong Cold Dead and I just love that book. Since then have I read the book after Strong to the Bone and now the latest one Strong as Steel. Caitlin Strong followed in her father and grandfather's (and great grandfather's etc.) footsteps and become a Texas Ranger. One can say she was born to be one and she's a tough woman that grew up learning how to shot rather than playing girly games. In this book, she and her lover Cort Wesley Master faced with a mystery that goes a long way back in time. In 1994 her father Jim Strong stumbled over a mystery of missing cargo, mass murder and three bodies who just seemed to have died at the same time, but there are no visible wounds. What is the link between this case and a massacre in the present time and some skeletal remains are found in the Texas desert? What I love about these books is not only does one get a lot of action and a great mystery, you also get flashbacks to past Strongs. Like in this book, when we also get to follow Jim Strong as he tries to solve the train massacre and what happened to the cargo. This story, of course, is linked to the present case and I particularly like how it had a personal effect on Caitlin. I eagerly read on to see if my theory was right about Cort Wesley Master son Dylan's new "girlfriend" and I was right. That is one hell of development. Now I can go on and on about details like this one, and others like how much I love Caitlin's not so subtle ways of trying to get her boss to stop smoking. Or the fascinating case of the dead men without any wounds. However, let's not spoil too much. So, I will just say this, yes the books are great and you can read them as stand-alone. If you like reading about Texas Rangers, or just compelling crime novels with strong female characters. Then, this is a series for you. On a side note, they should really make a TV-series about Caitlin Strong and the rest of the Strong Texas Rangers. That would be perfect.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Cheryl

    Hold on to your hats, bad ass Caitlin Strong, Texas Ranger, is taking the reader on another wild ride!!! Twenty-five years ago, Caitin’s father, Jim Strong, was on a case that wasn’t resolved and now Caitlin finds herself dealing with the same case. Some people want what was buried 25 years ago, which has eluded them, but Caitlin has to figure out who these people are and what are in the buried ossuaries. And bodies are also piling up. This book is the 10th book in this series but reads as a stand Hold on to your hats, bad ass Caitlin Strong, Texas Ranger, is taking the reader on another wild ride!!! Twenty-five years ago, Caitin’s father, Jim Strong, was on a case that wasn’t resolved and now Caitlin finds herself dealing with the same case. Some people want what was buried 25 years ago, which has eluded them, but Caitlin has to figure out who these people are and what are in the buried ossuaries. And bodies are also piling up. This book is the 10th book in this series but reads as a stand alone. What I enjoy in this series is the profound and immense research that goes into the books interweaving historical facts into the story. It is not only a thrilling read but I always learn new facts. For me, this was a page turner, trying to keep up with the action and to see what really was in those ossuaries. The action is nonstop! I highly recommend that you pick up a copy and I guarantee you will be hooked!

  3. 5 out of 5

    Sherry Fundin

    1959, Turkey: A freighter, all the crew dead, takes out the Port of Ordu, just like in a Jurassic Park movie. 1904, Mexico: A little girl watches as her entire family is slaughtered at her parents wedding. 1994, Texas: The entire crew of a train, plus a few spare bodies, are found dead. WTH is going on? Caitlin is 14 years old, so it is her dad, Jim, on the case.. Present Day: Here comes Caitlin…with guns blazing. She has a sixth sense when it comes to tracking down her quarry. She is surrounded by u 1959, Turkey: A freighter, all the crew dead, takes out the Port of Ordu, just like in a Jurassic Park movie. 1904, Mexico: A little girl watches as her entire family is slaughtered at her parents wedding. 1994, Texas: The entire crew of a train, plus a few spare bodies, are found dead. WTH is going on? Caitlin is 14 years old, so it is her dad, Jim, on the case.. Present Day: Here comes Caitlin…with guns blazing. She has a sixth sense when it comes to tracking down her quarry. She is surrounded by unique and interesting characters that play vital roles in the story. The characters will face some personal challenges, but Cort has no doubt…Right is right and wrong is wrong. I am very curious how Jon Land will bring everything together. I never worry about action, because he supplies plenty and keeps me reading, wanting to know all the answers. I love the paranormal elements that blend in so well with the normal. Paz has visions and Cort has a root beer drinking ghost that supplies plenty of laughs to go with the danger and mystery. Jon’s description of Caitlin’s Barbie and Ken dolls had me busting out laughing. It’s the little things like that which make Jon Land’s writing so fantastic. I know a series can become repetitive, dry and past it’s prime, but so far Caitlin Strong is going strong and I look forward to seeing what he puts her through next. See more at fundinmental

  4. 5 out of 5

    Dave Edlund

    Strong As Steel is perhaps the best novel by Jon Land—ever. Although I have no doubt he’ll raise the bar with the next Caitlin Strong novel. From an explosive gunfight on the opening pages, through a deep historical mystery, to a climactic ending, this novel is everything a thriller aficionado could possibly want… and more. Caitlin Strong continues to develop to the point where you feel you know her well, but probably don’t know everything. Mr. Land also brings depths of understanding to the pro Strong As Steel is perhaps the best novel by Jon Land—ever. Although I have no doubt he’ll raise the bar with the next Caitlin Strong novel. From an explosive gunfight on the opening pages, through a deep historical mystery, to a climactic ending, this novel is everything a thriller aficionado could possibly want… and more. Caitlin Strong continues to develop to the point where you feel you know her well, but probably don’t know everything. Mr. Land also brings depths of understanding to the protagonist, The Red Widow, allowing the reader to feel empathy for her, living a life she didn’t want. The writing is clever, witty, and exceptionally good. And you don’t have to read the other Caitlin Strong novels to be thoroughly entertained by this one.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Carla Neggers

    Another fantastic entry in a terrific series.

  6. 5 out of 5

    SassafrasfromAmazon

    This is the 10th book in the Caitlin Strong series. She is a 5th generation modern day Texas Ranger. She can only be described as a gunslinger, and there is never a dull moment. Her captain refers to her as "the winds of Hurricane Caitlin." This is a fascinating series, and to my knowledge, there are no other books featuring a heroine like Caitlin Strong, and the story lines are quite unique. There are also some very colorful, unforgettable characters in this series that I have really enjoyed. T This is the 10th book in the Caitlin Strong series. She is a 5th generation modern day Texas Ranger. She can only be described as a gunslinger, and there is never a dull moment. Her captain refers to her as "the winds of Hurricane Caitlin." This is a fascinating series, and to my knowledge, there are no other books featuring a heroine like Caitlin Strong, and the story lines are quite unique. There are also some very colorful, unforgettable characters in this series that I have really enjoyed. This book (and all the books in the series) are character-driven, gripping stories of adventure and intrigue. I cannot wait for the next installment of this utterly riveting novel. NB: To get the most out of this series and to familiarize you with the fantastic cast of characters, these books really should be read in order. Bravo to Mr. Land for creating such an exemplary series.

  7. 4 out of 5

    J.H. Bogran

    Highly recommended. The author has a panache for writing over-the-top yet convincing characters. The series is still going strong, no pun intended.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Cy Wyss

    It says right on the cover that Jon Land’s Caitlin Strong series has won eleven major awards, and it is easy to see why. When I read the tenth installment in the series, Strong as Steel, I was reminded of a coyote – lean, fast, and clever. The book gripped me right away with images of a ghost ship, a trope I find particularly compelling. What does the ghost ship off the coast of Turkey have to do with murders in Mexico and Texas? You’ll have to read the book to find out. Suffice it to say, the e It says right on the cover that Jon Land’s Caitlin Strong series has won eleven major awards, and it is easy to see why. When I read the tenth installment in the series, Strong as Steel, I was reminded of a coyote – lean, fast, and clever. The book gripped me right away with images of a ghost ship, a trope I find particularly compelling. What does the ghost ship off the coast of Turkey have to do with murders in Mexico and Texas? You’ll have to read the book to find out. Suffice it to say, the ending is everything you wish it was, kind of a reverberating howl into the night, if I may be indulged with that metaphor. Caitlin Steel, the eponymous heroine of the series, is the latest in a long line of Texas Rangers and we hear about her grandfather and father as well. Flashbacks are told as if they were unfolding in real time, which is a nice touch. One can’t but hope Ms. Strong will have a child to carry on the family business but, as she is firmly ensconced in the trope of the strong-willed and fiercely independent heroine, there doesn’t seem to be a lot of hope for that. These books aren’t about romance, they’re about a sharp-shooter with a strong eye for justice. The other characters are interesting and mostly men. The author draws great character sketches and it is also easy to visualize the scenes in the novel. Sometimes the interpersonal relationships seem flimsy, but I’d say that’s a function of the main character’s isolation due to her own self-sufficiency. One doesn’t get the sense she had a terribly mothering upbringing, and that masculine aloofness somewhat defines her. Still, I loved Ms. Strong like I love the idea of the coyote: wily, lonesome, and resourceful. She’s fully in line with a new breed of female protagonist that reads more like a wolf in sheep’s clothing – or, a coyote. You won’t regret having this installment on your shelves. It’s a compelling and satisfying read.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Thomas Bruso

    In Jon Land’s pulse-pounding 10th Caitlin Strong novel, “Strong as Steel,” readers are in for a roller coaster ride. Land writes the book in two different timelines: 1994 to present, and jumps back and forth, telling the story from the various points of view of his compelling characters, all of them with secrets of their own. In the electrifying opening chapter, Caitlin’s father, Texas Ranger Jim Strong, investigates a mass killing on a freight train in Fort Stockton, Texas. The gruesome discovery In Jon Land’s pulse-pounding 10th Caitlin Strong novel, “Strong as Steel,” readers are in for a roller coaster ride. Land writes the book in two different timelines: 1994 to present, and jumps back and forth, telling the story from the various points of view of his compelling characters, all of them with secrets of their own. In the electrifying opening chapter, Caitlin’s father, Texas Ranger Jim Strong, investigates a mass killing on a freight train in Fort Stockton, Texas. The gruesome discovery of a conductor, engineer, two brakemen and a fireman is nothing he has seen before in his long career. It is only the beginning to more horrible things to come, and one of the strongest novels in the series. As the story continues, and the chilling atmosphere changes, tough-as-nails and independent fifth-generation Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong is on the trail of the elusive killers responsible for the skeletal remains found at an excavation site in the Texas desert. Caitlin must travel to different places to piece the puzzles together, and it the fast-paced journey that will keep readers turning the pages. In his usual high wire suspense narrative, Land connects the two cases in an explosive finale, leaving readers waiting eagerly for the next installment. Highly recommended.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Bookreporter.com Mystery & Thriller

    STRONG AS STEEL, the 10th book featuring Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong, begins with a bang --- literally. The first passage, set in the year 1959, sees the freighter ship Dolunay enter the Port of Ordu, Turkey, and slam into the pier. The worst part is not that the ship ignored all warnings from the Port, but that it did not have a single living person aboard upon its arrival. All of these novels are firmly linked to events in the past, some of which involve Caitlin's father, Jim, who was also a Te STRONG AS STEEL, the 10th book featuring Texas Ranger Caitlin Strong, begins with a bang --- literally. The first passage, set in the year 1959, sees the freighter ship Dolunay enter the Port of Ordu, Turkey, and slam into the pier. The worst part is not that the ship ignored all warnings from the Port, but that it did not have a single living person aboard upon its arrival. All of these novels are firmly linked to events in the past, some of which involve Caitlin's father, Jim, who was also a Texas Ranger. Land always provides a quote that mirrors Caitlin's mission. This time it’s from Marge Piercy, who says, “A strong woman is a woman determined to do something others are determined not to be done.” This pretty much sums up Caitlin’s intestinal fortitude and tenacity. In 1964, a young Mexican girl witnesses her father being shot to death at his own wedding, a tragedy that will play a major role in the present-day plot. The story involving Jim Strong is set in 1994, where we find him and his partner (and Caitlin's present-day Captain), D.W. Tepper, in Pecos County, Texas, investigating a handful of dead bodies, some out in the open and others inside an empty railroad car that arrived from Mexico. Caitlin is summoned to the Chase Tower in Dallas, where a company called CTP --- Communications Technology Providers --- is wiped out by what looks like a terrorist attack. She bumps into a man she knows only as “Jones” who works with Homeland Security. He won't reveal much information but does let her know that the employees of CTP were on his payroll. He describes the situation as a Zero Footprint Operation but is no more forthcoming than that label. Another flashback to 1994 finds Jim and Tepper traveling to Chihuahua, Mexico, to face off against the vicious and deadly Luna Diaz Delgado, aka the “Red Widow.” Further passages will reveal that the Red Widow is the same individual who witnessed her father's murder at his wedding. I won't go any further as we also have the opportunity to see her teaming up with Caitlin on a mission that is bound to all of these past events. Meanwhile, Caitlin's current ex-con boyfriend, Cort Wesley Masters, has teamed up with Jones for a separate assignment that is all tied to the same big-picture mission that Caitlin is investigating. They are sent to the CDC in Atlanta, GA, to look into the possibility of a deadly pathogen being involved in a series of unsolved deaths. One of the many things I love about this series is Land's use of secondary characters. In his hands, they are not mere caricatures but living, breathing, complex people. Cort is regularly visited by the ghost of his old friend, Leroy Epps, and their discussions are always engaging. This calls to mind Charles Todd’s Inspector Ian Rutledge novels, in which Rutledge is constantly conversing with the ghost of a WWI colleague, Hamish MacLeod. Another pivotal character is Cort's son, Dylan, who we have seen grow up throughout the course of the series and has been involved in tragic circumstances that have shaped who he is. He provides his father and the mission with assistance in deciphering the markings on the ancient crate found on the train with all of the unexplained corpses. It turns out to be not a crate or a box but an ossuary, which literally translates as a depository for the bones of the dead. Once the translation is complete, Dylan interprets the language to be claiming this ossuary contains the bones of Jesus Christ. Caitlin comes to the same conclusion once she meets up with the Red Widow in Mexico. Both Caitlin and Cort are highly skeptical of this interpretation and feel strongly that it is a ruse to keep them from finding out what is really at play. STRONG AS STEEL is, quite simply, unputdownable, and Jon Land keeps readers regularly off their feet with plot twists and revelations you will never see coming. This series seems to get better and better, and each entry finds a new adversary that has not only local but global consequences as their end game. What I respect most about Land, and what sets him apart from other prolific writers who spin out endless titles just to see their name on some bestseller list, is that his stories are all fully realized, intricately plotted and always suspenseful. In addition to these outstanding books, Land has ventured into a writing partnership with bestselling author Heather Graham that produced the terrific YA thriller THE RISING. The biggest risk he has taken, and one that Sophie Hannah surely felt when she took on the task of continuing Dame Agatha Christie's Hercule Poirot novels, is his venture that finds him as the new voice of the immortal “Murder, She Wrote” star, Jessica Fletcher. He has taken that series in new directions that easily could have fallen flat on longtime readers. Instead, the risk has paid off as he has breathed new life into these iconic mysteries. Notwithstanding all of this recent success, there is no substitute for the Caitlin Strong novels, which feel like coming home for Jon Land. As the saying goes, “There's no place like home.” Reviewed by Ray Palen

  11. 5 out of 5

    Russell

    STRONG AS STEEL By Jon Land Reviewed by Russ Ilg The tenth time is clearly the charm for the in dominatable Jon Land whose decennial effort in his Caitlin Strong series, Strong as Steel, cements his Texas Ranger’s status as the best female protagonist in thriller fiction today and maybe ever. The high-octane plot features the classic thriller staple of a long buried, and of course deadly, secret being unearthed, this time from the Texas desert. Caitlin’s father Jim Strong, apparently, was somehow in STRONG AS STEEL By Jon Land Reviewed by Russ Ilg The tenth time is clearly the charm for the in dominatable Jon Land whose decennial effort in his Caitlin Strong series, Strong as Steel, cements his Texas Ranger’s status as the best female protagonist in thriller fiction today and maybe ever. The high-octane plot features the classic thriller staple of a long buried, and of course deadly, secret being unearthed, this time from the Texas desert. Caitlin’s father Jim Strong, apparently, was somehow involved in burying three shipping crates there twenty-five years before as part of a case he was working on. Indeed, a particular staple of this series is the seamless intermixing of the past and the present, with Caitlin picking up on a trail left by one of her ancestors. It was William Faulkner who said, “The past isn’t dead, it’s not even past.” Well, nothing describes Strong as Steel better than that, with “dead” being the operative word. But Caitlin isn’t the only one on the trail of the contents of those three crates; far from it, in fact. Hot on their trail, and hers, is Molinari, an especially maniacal head of an especially fanatical band of religious zealots out to safeguard a two-thousand-year-old secret at all costs. Being once set ablaze by his enemies has left Molinari almost literally faceless and he has long pursued his quest with a degree of violence and rage befitting the grotesque he’s become. True to form, of course, what we think everyone’s after tells only part of the story. In addition to that figuratively deadly secret buried in the desert lies a weapon that’s deadly in the literal sense. Good thing Caitlin won’t have to chase down the truth alone, with her indestructible protector Guillermo Paz and outlaw lover Cort Wesley Masters along for the ride. The giant Paz is his typically inimitable self, this time out cast working at a daycare center as the next step in his spiritual re-invention. Cort Wesley, though, is a bit worse for wear, having suffered a warning stroke that leads the ghost-like visage of his old friend Leroy Epps to comment, “Guess you’re not so invincible after all.” The last book in the series, Strong to the Bone, featured Caitlin finally getting a chance to catch the man who sexually assaulted her twenty years before. So I guess it’s Cort Wesley’s turn this time to face a crisis that defines the emotional resonance of a tale that typifies Land’s penchant for blending ten tons of plot with characters who can more than handle the weight. In that respect, his Caitlin Strong series has come to resemble the work of James Lee Burke’s superb Dave Robicheaux novels, books that make our blood boil even as our pulse is racing. Strong as Steel is a gut-punch of a thriller that packs a wallop on every page, a mind-numbing tale that corkscrews through multiple plotlines toward arriving at a wholly satisfying conclusion. That’s the thing about Caitlin Strong and Jon Land: They both shoot straight and hit the bullseye every time. So hitch up your holster and strap yourself in for a wild, exhalating ride that leaves you holding on for dear life.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jewel Hart

    Strong As Steel (Caitlin Strong Novels) by Jon Land tells a story that begins with Texas Ranger Jim Strong, who is consumed by a mystery that has dumbfounded the elite lawmakers from the start. In 1994 a freight train is found abandoned, with dead bodies in abundance and no cargo. The mystery begins as there appears to be no logical explanation for the deaths, there being no outward signs of injury and no evidence to point to the cause of death. Add to that the strange disappearance of a cargo t Strong As Steel (Caitlin Strong Novels) by Jon Land tells a story that begins with Texas Ranger Jim Strong, who is consumed by a mystery that has dumbfounded the elite lawmakers from the start. In 1994 a freight train is found abandoned, with dead bodies in abundance and no cargo. The mystery begins as there appears to be no logical explanation for the deaths, there being no outward signs of injury and no evidence to point to the cause of death. Add to that the strange disappearance of a cargo that has no record of its existence, and Jim Strong begins his quest to find the answers. Twenty-five years later, and Jim Strong’s daughter, Caitlin, finds herself asking the same questions as her father when more mysterious deaths occur that are suspiciously similar. Caitlin has followed in her father’s footsteps and is a Texas Ranger, and she has inherited her father’s determination and dedication to the job. She sets out to unravel the mystery of the elusive containers and to discover their curious contents, whatever they may be. But there are others at work with a similar goal but a different purpose. Enter Molinari, a religious zealot determined to protect the secret of the past using whatever means necessary to accomplish his task. Then we have a little girl as the ring-bearer at her father’s wedding who witnesses a massacre that molds her life’s journey as she becomes the deadly yet revered Luna Diaz Delgado, determined to rule by fear. Such is the roller coaster of this novel, a reader’s journey of mystery, hatred, deceit and murder, yet interspersed with family loyalty, an enigma from the past, hints of the supernatural, and a man who talks to ghosts. There is so much in Strong As Steel, the tenth book (no less) in the Caitlin Strong series that it leaves the reader breathless in anticipation and turning the pages with expectation that all will be revealed and then being thwarted as the mystery deepens. Caitlin is all that her name suggests; strong in character and mind, unafraid of the consequences of her actions, still desirous of making her father proud, and yet at times there are glimpses of someone compassionate and controlled. If the synopsis for Strong As Steel does not capture your imagination, then just open the book and you will be drawn in from the first page. The fact that this is the tenth book in the series is testament to the standard and quality of the writing, the vivid mind of the writer, the strong and well-developed characters, the Individuality of the protagonists, and that’s before even starting on the suspense that is created within the pages, culminating in a satisfying yet surprising ending. This is one of those books that the reader becomes so engrossed in, the end comes reluctantly. Author Jon Land, writes with confidence and credibility and brings these incredible characters to life with ease. I am proud to recommend Strong As Steel by USA Today best selling author Jon Land, an excellent 5 star read for lovers of mystery, action, suspense and adventure.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Felicia

    Had I known what I was in for with Strong as Steel, I would have rested up, taken a few deep breaths and prepared myself… because this read hits the ground running and all I could do was… run with it. While assisting with serving a simple search warrant, fifth-generation Texas Ranger, Caitlin Strong ends up in a gun-battle in a downtown Dallas high-rise. The staff of the firm where Caitlin was headed lies in pools of blood, and the Ranger puts down the four anonymous assassins. A young girl, proud Had I known what I was in for with Strong as Steel, I would have rested up, taken a few deep breaths and prepared myself… because this read hits the ground running and all I could do was… run with it. While assisting with serving a simple search warrant, fifth-generation Texas Ranger, Caitlin Strong ends up in a gun-battle in a downtown Dallas high-rise. The staff of the firm where Caitlin was headed lies in pools of blood, and the Ranger puts down the four anonymous assassins. A young girl, proud to be the ring bearer as her parents finally marry, walks up the church aisle focused on her special task, and is the only one to survive the massacre which takes place inside the church. A man standing on the gallows awaiting execution for murderous crimes gets a last-minute stay-of-execution… from his men and an old friend in a rescue mission that shook an entire military prison. And all this is in the first fifty pages. These scenes link past and present, and also connect to a case Caitlin’s father, Ranger Jim Strong, handled twenty-five years past when she was a teenage girl. Something stolen and hidden two-and-a-half decades ago has resurfaced again, no less coveted and priced at as many lives as it takes to recover it. And it takes a lot of lives. A lot. Though this is the tenth book in the Caitlin Strong series and the first I’ve read by this author, I jumped right in and didn’t feel lost or as if I was missing something. Is there history? Of course. But enough of the back story is woven through this read to understand connections, bonds, and situations. And the characters. The women of Strong as Steel are well-written, complex women of strength. Despite being on opposite sides of the law, Caitlin Strong and Luna Diaz Delgado and her daughter, Nola, share a mutual respect. They’ll find out before the story ends they share something else as Luna has been a part of this case since Jim Strong caught it. It’s also telling that the men in this read, all committed to their missions, despite the questionable legalities involved, see the women as equals… if not legends. There’s a thought-provoking plot that doesn’t just question how far is too far, but also does the ultimate good exist or is it as corrupt as the evil it claims to battle. Attention to detail is on point. Little world-building is needed when history is the anchor. The story’s climax is intense and breath-taking, and so well-written I could almost feel the flicker of the flames. Readers of crime fiction, suspense, and police procedurals will fall right into this read, but it’s international overtones, military precision, and the western flare of the Texas Rangers will hook many others as well. If new to the series like myself, you’ll find yourself in the same predicament—finding time to read the first nine books in the series! Don’t miss out on Strong as Steel! Enjoy!

  14. 4 out of 5

    Joan

    Caitlin Strong is a Texas Ranger like no other. She is one tough woman and that comes across loudly in this novel. The story contains tons of suspense and an increasing body count. Caitlin is brought into a case that soon shows signs of relating to a case her father, also a Texas Ranger, had worked on when Caitlin was just a toddler. The story from decades ago is revealed little by little as Caitlin pursues the current mystery. The technique works rather well as the stories parallel each other. Caitlin Strong is a Texas Ranger like no other. She is one tough woman and that comes across loudly in this novel. The story contains tons of suspense and an increasing body count. Caitlin is brought into a case that soon shows signs of relating to a case her father, also a Texas Ranger, had worked on when Caitlin was just a toddler. The story from decades ago is revealed little by little as Caitlin pursues the current mystery. The technique works rather well as the stories parallel each other. Some characters are involved in both cases and grudgingly reveal information to Caitlin. The plot is complex, involving many locations and several different time periods. That means the beginning of the novel may be a bit confusing. Stories are given that don't seem to be related until later in the novel. But it does come together and make for a good narrative in the end. Land's writing style is unique with clipped dialogue and frequent sarcasm. That gives a sense of the intensity of the work of the Rangers and the relationships between them. This is a good novel for readers who like a strong female heroine and who don't mind some of the bad guys actually being good guys (or just the opposite). There is even an aspect of an ancient mystery thrown in, with religious belief hanging in the balance. While this is a novel in an ongoing series, there is enough backstory woven in to make it read well on its own. I received a complimentary digital copy of this book through Partners in Crime Virtual Book Tours. My comments are an independent and honest review.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Shelly

    It's rare that I have read an author who can weave a backstory into a current storyline without boring me. Jon Land has quickly risen to the top of my favorite authors who can do just that! Caitlin comes out full force with a bit of resemblance to her father within her personality and now into her case. The action keeps the story flowing at a pace that makes you keep turning page after page (even when you've promised you'll come to bed after 1 more chapter!). Caitlin's strength holds true from p It's rare that I have read an author who can weave a backstory into a current storyline without boring me. Jon Land has quickly risen to the top of my favorite authors who can do just that! Caitlin comes out full force with a bit of resemblance to her father within her personality and now into her case. The action keeps the story flowing at a pace that makes you keep turning page after page (even when you've promised you'll come to bed after 1 more chapter!). Caitlin's strength holds true from previous novels; but, we also get to see her vulnerabilities. This is only my second book in the series (I'd love to go back and start from the beginning!); but it's easy to pick up with enough backstory to give you a clear understanding of the characters without becoming an information overload! Each twist leads into another that keeps you wondering if you're going to be able to put the pieces together; but somehow, I started placing everything together as it wrapped up into a whole new picture. Land's writing gives you so much more than words on a page -- it gives you a kick-ass Caitlin Strong series that hops off the page right in front of you. Definitely a 5-star recommended read!I have volunteered to share my review and all the opinions are 100% my own.  

  16. 4 out of 5

    Kathy

    Part of the reason I enjoyed this book was that it was set in Texas, where I live, and I enjoyed having the action occur in places I recognized. I thought the premise of a long buried secret was good, and an extremely interesting choice of the villainous people behind the bad guys (no spoilers here). I enjoyed the tidbits of Texas Rangers' history at the beginning of each part. Very well done, with just enough to add some realistic flavor but not so much you wanted to just flip past it. Fast pac Part of the reason I enjoyed this book was that it was set in Texas, where I live, and I enjoyed having the action occur in places I recognized. I thought the premise of a long buried secret was good, and an extremely interesting choice of the villainous people behind the bad guys (no spoilers here). I enjoyed the tidbits of Texas Rangers' history at the beginning of each part. Very well done, with just enough to add some realistic flavor but not so much you wanted to just flip past it. Fast paced, good twists, a very good book. I would recommend it. This is my first book in the series, so while there is some references to past cases (other books), it was not intrusive. I thought the male lead, Cort, was flat, and for me, the female lead, Caitlyn, was basically a male character with a woman's name. You could change her name to Case and not significantly impact the story. My main disappointment with the way the story ended. The mystery is solved, but "justice" is served by vigilante action, not arrest and trial by jury. I've seen this trend in other mysteries recently, and I don't like the message these books are promoting, that true justice can only be achieved by Wild West law of the gun.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jenna

    Another fast paced, action packed story. Well written. When I first read the series, I found the moving b/w the past & various POV's annoying but now I’ve gotten used to it. I like how things that happened to Caitlin’s grandpa or dad relate to the present case she’s working on. And I like the different POV's as I’ve come to like those characters. Though I was a bit bummed about what happens w/Cort & Dylan. I’m also curious to what will happen w/Paz in the next installment. This was another p Another fast paced, action packed story. Well written. When I first read the series, I found the moving b/w the past & various POV's annoying but now I’ve gotten used to it. I like how things that happened to Caitlin’s grandpa or dad relate to the present case she’s working on. And I like the different POV's as I’ve come to like those characters. Though I was a bit bummed about what happens w/Cort & Dylan. I’m also curious to what will happen w/Paz in the next installment. This was another page turner that I enjoyed. And while I don’t know if Caitlin & Cort will ever marry, definitely won’t have kids; I do hope the series continues enough that she can tell stories to the boys children the way her grandad did w/her. And I didn’t think the writer could create even more evil/criminal characters but wow, he sure did. W/out spoilers-I figured out the secret about the people. I’m sorry, but that was soooo obvious. But I didn’t figure out the secret about the thing. That was an interesting take on the subject. I also liked the author’s note at the end which explained the source of his inspiration for this story. And yes, this is far-fetched but that’s why I enjoy this series. It’s like those popcorn summer movies: fictional entertainment. I look forward to the next book.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Cheryl Malandrinos

    Oh, how I have missed this series! Every time I think Land has outdone himself, he amazes me once again. While I haven't read the previous few installments--though now I really want to go back and catch up--Strong As Steel reminded me what a creative and talented author Land is. It's hard not to like Caitlin Strong. She is a fifth generation Texas Ranger--no pressure there--and, true to her name, she proves she has earned her reputation. Filled with recurring characters and newbies, Strong As Ste Oh, how I have missed this series! Every time I think Land has outdone himself, he amazes me once again. While I haven't read the previous few installments--though now I really want to go back and catch up--Strong As Steel reminded me what a creative and talented author Land is. It's hard not to like Caitlin Strong. She is a fifth generation Texas Ranger--no pressure there--and, true to her name, she proves she has earned her reputation. Filled with recurring characters and newbies, Strong As Steel ties numerous events together into a phenomenal, action-packed story that readers of this genre will enjoy. Another reviewer has said this, but I must concur the Caitlin Strong series is ripe to be turned into a TV series. One of my favorite aspects of the series is the variety of quotes and article excerpts from real life Texas Rangers featured throughout the different parts of the stories. I look forward to reading those as much as the story itself. If you want action; if you want adventure; and if you want a female character that is strong despite her flaws, then pick up Strong As Steel and be impressed.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Doug Yonce

    The past, the present, local, national, and even international conspiracies all come together in a perfect storm—Hurricane Caitlin, as in Caitlin Strong, Texas Ranger. Familiar characters from previous installments can be found, and relationships play an important role as a cold case gets hot. Although this is the tenth book in the series, it can easily be a starting point for the new reader.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Grandma

    Terrific! Great story, lots of action, and a few unexpected twists: Caitlin, Cort and Paz, with an assist from Dylan, are gunning to the rescue of both the great state of Texas and civilization as we know it.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Cathy

    this was just okay. i won’t be buying this series again but i stead will wait for the library copy.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Ray Palen

    Read my rave review this Friday on bookreporter.com.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Ryan Hillis

    A so so thriller about Texas Ranger.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Laura

    The book begins in the past, 1959 a ship arrives in the Turkish port of Ordu with the dead crew. Time jump to 1964 Mexico City, Mexico, a girl is bringing wedding rings to her parents’ wedding and hears “fireworks”, they are gunshots and both parents are killed. 1994 Texas Fort Stockton, a group of Mexican men, perhaps belonging to the drug cartel, are found dead. Jim Strong investigates. Today Dallas, Texas, Caitlin Strong accompanies Captain Bub McNelly, captain of the Texan Criminal Investigat The book begins in the past, 1959 a ship arrives in the Turkish port of Ordu with the dead crew. Time jump to 1964 Mexico City, Mexico, a girl is bringing wedding rings to her parents’ wedding and hears “fireworks”, they are gunshots and both parents are killed. 1994 Texas Fort Stockton, a group of Mexican men, perhaps belonging to the drug cartel, are found dead. Jim Strong investigates. Today Dallas, Texas, Caitlin Strong accompanies Captain Bub McNelly, captain of the Texan Criminal Investigation Division, to serve a search warrant in an information-gathering company and the pandemonium breaks out when they enter. Caracas, Venezuela, Guillermo Paz is hanged, but just before the hanging trapdoor opens, the pandemonium breaks out. Nigeria, Enrico Molinari, the faceless man, must punish the infidels, those who have turned their backs on his God. And for this reason, he gathers the firstborn males of a village, all kids, and has them killed. Are all these cases connected? I liked how the author connects all these cases that seem disconnected at first; I like that it talks about popular beliefs that in the end are not true; that it talks about deadly viruses, that the CDC is taken into consideration and that it talks about church conspiracies. The protagonist of the book and of the series is Caitlin Strong, daughter, grand-daughter, great grand-daughter (etc..) of Texan rangers and a ranger herself. Her name is Strong and that’s exactly what she is. I love strong female characters that are well written and don’t pass as light headed. There has been a few female characters in books that I read in the previous months that are just like that and were written by female authors. I love how Jon Land writes this character. The only thing that I don’t understand is why Cort Wesley often calls Caitlin “Ranger” and Caitlin calls Cort by full name. Maybe if I read the other books I would understand, but for now I can’t understand it. It seems strange that a couple calls each other that way. I read this book aware that it is the 10th book in the series, so I already knew that I wouldn’t understand some things but I must say that the book doesn’t refer to previous cases and therefore I read it without problems. At the beginning, I was afraid that the fact that the protagonist’s boyfriend is an outlaw would lead me to not like the book, but as soon as I started reading, I realized that the meaning of the outlaw is not synonymous with criminal as I had hypothesized therefore I liked the book for this reason, too. And then the short chapters. I love books with short chapters! At some point in the book, Cort Wesley’s eldest son begins a relationship with a certain Selina. I must say that I realized shortly after her introduction who she was. And I like this character. I like the author’s style, the way of writing these chapters is interesting, I mean a chapter about a certain fact, then moving on to a chapter set in the past, or a chapter focused on Caitlin and the next one on Cort Wesley. I like this mix of scenes. I just didn’t like one fact only: Cort who sees the ghost of his friend… for this reason I give 4 stars and not 5. I also like that it is contemporary, I like that it talks about the crap that Trump is doing, not in detail but, for example there is a sentence that refers to the wall that he wants to build at the border with Mexico. (“Crap” is my though, the book doesn’t take part in favor or against it). https://eiencafe.com/strong-as-steel/

  25. 5 out of 5

    Lawrence

  26. 5 out of 5

    Vivian

    I received a digital copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. Caitlin Strong is a fifth-generation Texas Ranger and a throwback to the days when the Rangers were considered fierce and awe-inspiring law enforcement officers. Her latest adventures mirror her father's adventures from 25 years ago and it has to do with lost cargo, deaths from an unknown cause, a fearless Mexican cartel leader known as the Red Widow Spider, and a mysterious religious group known as the Order. Twenty I received a digital copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. Caitlin Strong is a fifth-generation Texas Ranger and a throwback to the days when the Rangers were considered fierce and awe-inspiring law enforcement officers. Her latest adventures mirror her father's adventures from 25 years ago and it has to do with lost cargo, deaths from an unknown cause, a fearless Mexican cartel leader known as the Red Widow Spider, and a mysterious religious group known as the Order. Twenty-five years ago, Caitlin's father, Jim Strong along with D.W. Tepper, was investigating the mysterious deaths of three men found on a train along with the murders of the train crew and several hired guns. That investigation led to a trip to Mexico and an encounter with the infamous Red Widow Spider or Luna Diaz Delgado. That meeting eventually led to Jim Strong rescuing Luna from a hit squad sent by the Order. Twenty-five years later and Caitlin is dealing with a local computer company with ties to Homeland Security that has been decimated by another hit squad sent by the Order. Caitlin's significant other, Cort Wesley Masters is dealing with his own problems as he's recently suffered a TIA (transient ischemic attack or mini-stroke) that has caused a partial paralysis of his right hand and arm. His eldest son, Dylan, is preparing to head back to college after taking a year off and seems to have been targeted by a pharmaceutical sales representative that is quite interested in both Cort Wesley and Caitlin in addition to being attracted to Dylan. Caitlin's protector, Colonel Guillermo Paz, has recently escaped from a near hanging in Caracas and is back in Texas working at a preschool. Their Homeland security link, Jones, is working behind the scenes to try and figure out what was taken off of the train 25 years ago, where it has been hidden all this time, what exactly was in the freight, and why so many people want it. Little does Jones know that Caitlin is trying to answer the same questions and the answers just might be the end of the world as we know it. I've read all of the previous Caitlin Strong novels and just when I think it can't get any better, Mr. Land releases a new book with a storyline that knocks me off my feet. I wish I could say I read Strong as Steel in one sitting, but I had to take multiple breaks due to migraine headaches. This story pulled me from the very beginning and it was difficult to see where Mr. Land was leading because there are several twists and turns in the story (no, I'm not revealing what they are!) but the action and storyline packs quite a punch. I enjoyed revisiting with Caitlin, Cort Wesley, Dylan, Captain D.W. Tepper, Jim Strong, Jones, Guillermo, and Young Roger (a Texas Ranger tech guru). There were a number of interesting characters introduced in this storyline, including Dylan's paramour - Selina Escalante, the Red Widow Spider - Luna Diaz Delgado, and just one of the bad guys to beat bad guys - Enrico Molinari - an enforcer/assassin for the Order. There's a lot of action in this story and at first, it seems like it will be taking a pseudo-religious turn like The DaVinci Code, well it kind of, sort of does, but not really (trust me, that will make sense when you read the book). Strong as Steel offers a darn good suspense-thriller read with some violence, drama, religious turmoil, and more. Yes, I enjoyed reading Strong as Steel and highly recommend it to anyone that has read the previous books in this series. If you're a fan of suspense or thrillers or like to read books with a lot of action, then I encourage you to read the entire Caitlin Strong series. I can't wait to see what happens next with Caitlin and friends. This review will post on 05/01/2019 at The Book Diva's Reads as part of a blog tour via Partners In Crime Virtual Book Tours

  27. 4 out of 5

    Janet Newport

    Thank you NetGalley and Macmillan-Tor/Forge for this arc. If you like a pulse pounding, heart racing action-adventure read, then this is for you. If you like a good old shoot-'em-up read, then this is for you. If you like international conspiracies , Mexican/South American cartel wars and religious crusades, the this is for you. If you like the resolution of cold case mysteries, then this is for you. I usually enjoy these types of escapist reads, but I found this to be a ginormous Texas sized sna Thank you NetGalley and Macmillan-Tor/Forge for this arc. If you like a pulse pounding, heart racing action-adventure read, then this is for you. If you like a good old shoot-'em-up read, then this is for you. If you like international conspiracies , Mexican/South American cartel wars and religious crusades, the this is for you. If you like the resolution of cold case mysteries, then this is for you. I usually enjoy these types of escapist reads, but I found this to be a ginormous Texas sized snarled web of all of the above. The plot lines just completely overwhelmed to story for me. There was the usual cast of 1,000s.... good guys, bad guys, bad guys turned good, good guys getting bad, yadda yadda yadda. All pretty stereotypical roles found in this type of book, but NONE of these characters resonated enough for me to be very interested in their outcomes. Not good, not really bad. The story just got lost.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Doug Yonce

    The past, the present, local, national, and even international conspiracies all come together in a perfect storm—Hurricane Caitlin, as in Caitlin Strong, Texas Ranger. Familiar characters from previous installments can be found, and relationships play an important role as a cold case gets hot. Although this is the tenth book in the series, it can easily be a starting point for the new reader.

  29. 5 out of 5

    T Olsen

    It's sad when someone who obviously knows how to write, feels the need to use three times as many words as necessary. And then tries to copy 3rd class action movies with lots of tactical nonsense. If you need to waste some time, read this book.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Steve

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