“Wildcase” by Neil Russell and “American Assassin” by Vince Flynn

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The days where “men were men” have taken a perverted turn. Too many men are happy to be manicured-chest-shaving-teeth-whitening-go-for-helpers.

What’s a go-for-helper? He’s the guy you send to find a real man when the terrorist level hits RED.

Seems to me we need more men and fewer manicured pretty boys.

And apparently I’m not the only one.

“Wildcase” by Neil Russell (Harper $7.99, 496 pages, www.neil-russell.com).

Russell’s lead character, Rail Black is an ex-Delta Force billionaire living in Beverly Hills. If you’ve ever wondered about the difference between Navy Seals and Delta Force, here it is–officially, Delta doesn’t exist. But they do exist somewhere out there where the bullets fly, risking their lives on missions the rest of us never hear about. Because Russell deals in books and movies, not super secret international affairs, he’s been invited to Delta off-limits HQ to met the people who do the impossible but will never, ever see their names in print.

It’s a tough group. Ninety-nine out of 100 special operators don’t make Delta. Rambo flunked out before lunch. Superman barely made a week.

Rail lives the good life, with all the toys and more money than he could ever spend. He’s a classic grit-lit tough guy. The guy a go-for-helper calls when some Uzi’d up punk pulls a drive by on their Lexus SC430.

Men want to be his friend. And … how can we say this delicately … where women are concerned… well, let’s just say he’s never been trapped in the “friend zone.”

Russell’s written two brilliantly exciting Rail Black thrillers. “City of War” was his first. A third novel– and movies – are on the way.

Here’s the essence of the quiet side of Rail’s life.

“Mallory, my very British houseman and best friend, was on the fly bridge, keeping the Benetti from bumping around too much in the chop. At 102 feet, it’s more boat than I need; more even than I wanted. It was custom-built for one of the NBA’s premier big men who liked the same colors I do – red and black – but suddenly found himself playing in Europe for a tenth of his former salary. When you’re my size and find a doorway that doesn’t leave knots on your forehead, you buy it.”

Russell’s publisher, Harper Collins, shipped cartons of his first book to active special operations locations around the world. Here’s what real Delta Force guys think of Rail Black.

“Black is a brilliant juxtaposition of strategic thinking and forceful explosion. A leader, without fear, and without surrender – and his intense drive will lead him to settle the score and bring about justice for those wronged.”

Former Delta Commander

“Suspense, tension, mayhem, and action are propelled throughout “City of War.” This is definitely among the finest adventure fiction being written in America today.”

Former Delta Operator

“Rail Black, as a character, displays refreshing ruthlessness focused on righting wrongs. Mr. Russell’s uniquely practical lessons in the application of violence are both informative and entertaining.”

Current Delta Operator In Iraq

“Russell will be the next master of the international thriller. Clancy at his very best in “The Hunt For Red October” was terrific: but Russell is better and the Rail Black character will soon join the legends of Jack Ryan and Mitch Rapp.”

Current Delta Operator in Afghanistan

And speaking of Mitch Rapp, “American Assassin” by Vince Flynn (Atra, $27.99, 435 pages, www.vinceflynn.com) the latest in the hugely popular Mitch Rapp series just hit the shelves.

You might know Mitch Rapp as a CIA super agent. Or a terrorist’s worst nightmare. “Assassin” covers Rapp’s early years — how the man who eventually became America’s best clandestine killer made the transition from gifted college athlete to a man willing to kill without wearing his country’s uniform.

Send your favorite go-for-helper out to get all three. If you can get him out of the cosmetologist’s chair.

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