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Jack Ryan books in order

The brilliant Tom Clancy is the author of the world-famous series of books featuring ultimate crime thriller hero Jack Ryan.

Taking place over several decades as we move through the series, Clancy’s books tell stories of spies, soldiers and terrorists across the world – crime fiction on a truly global scale.

If you like real-world mysteries with a political edge, or are a fan of the acclaimed Jack Ryan television series, then these will no doubt be your bag. Here’s a taste of all the books in publication order…

Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan books in order:

The Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy

The Hunt for Red October (1984)

This is the runaway bestseller that launched Tom Clancy’s spectacular career and introduced his acclaimed hero, Jack Ryan, in the ultimate submarine adventure.

Silently, beneath the chill Atlantic waters, Russia’s ultra-secret missile submarine, the Red October, is heading west. The Americans want her. The Russians want her back. With all-out war only seconds away, the superpowers race across the ocean on the most desperate mission of a lifetime. The most incredible chase in history is on – the hunt for Red October.

Patriot Games by Tom Clancy

Patriot Games (1987)

When Jack Ryan foils an Ulster Liberation Army terrorist attack on the Prince of Wales and his family, his courageous actions not only win him the admiration of an entire nation, they also arouse the enmity and hatred of that nation’s most dangerous men.

Now a ULA target himself, Jack Ryan plunges into the murky world of counter-intelligence, where he uncovers a connection between the ULA and an international underground network that places him at the forefront of the deadly battle against international terrorism, and pitches him into the most desperate struggle of his life.

The Cardinal of the Kremlin by Tom Clancy

The Cardinal of the Kremlin (1988)

Jack Ryan risks all in the Soviet Union as the superpowers clash over Star Wars in this instalment.

The superpower arms negotiations appear to be making progress. But a US spy satellite reveals that the Soviets are building a massive laser-defence system controlled from an other-worldly array of pillars and domes in the Soviet hills at Dushanbe near the border of war-torn Afghanistan.

The Americans need more information. The man to give it is Colonel Mikhail Filitov of the Soviet Union, codename Cardinal, America’s highest-placed agent in the Kremlin. But Filitov’s cover is about to be betrayed to the KGB, and CIA adviser Jack Ryan must rescue Filitov and bring him to safety.

Clear and Present Danger by Tom Clancy

Clear and Present Danger (1989)

Colombian drug lords, tired of being harassed by US law enforcement agents, have assassinated the American Ambassador and the visiting head of the FBI. Their message is clear: leave us alone. But they have pushed too far. The decision is made to send undercover teams into Colombia.

Back in the USA, men armed with the most sophisticated tools their country can devise prepare to take the fight to the enemy. But does anyone know who the real enemy is? Jack Ryan and CIA field officer John Clark must find the answer. They expect danger from without, yet the greatest danger of all may come from within.

The Sum of All Fears by Tom Clancy

The Sum of All Fears (1991)

As those in power around the globe face up to the challenges of a new world order, in Washington CIA Deputy Director Jack Ryan is putting everything into a plan that could finally bring peace to a Middle East still suffering from the ravages of war. But too many groups have invested too much blood to allow the plan to succeed – the terrorists have one final desperate card to play. With one terrible act the world is plunged into nuclear crisis.

His dreams of peace shattered, Ryan is confronted with a situation he has never dared to imagine: with the world standing on the brink of war, what do you do if the US President is incompetent to deal with the greatest crisis of all?

Debt of Honour by Tom Clancy

Debt of Honour (1994)

In Debt of Honour, Jack Ryan defends the USA against economic sabotage from the East that escalates into war.

Called out of retirement to serve as the new President’s National Security Adviser, Jack Ryan quickly realizes that the problems of peace are fully as complex as those of war. Enemies have become friends, friends enemies, and even the form of conflict has changed. When one of those new enemies readies a strike not only at America’s territory, but at the heart of her economy, it is Ryan who must somehow prepare an untested President to meet the challenge. For there is a debt of honour to be paid – and the price will be terrifyingly high…

Executive Orders by Tom Clancy

Executive Orders (1996)

After a runaway Jumbo Jet has crashed into the Capitol Building in Washington, the President is left dead, along with most of the Cabinet and Congress. Dazed and confused, the man who only minutes before was confirmed as the new caretaker Vice-President is told that he is now President of the United States. President John Patrick Ryan.

But how do you run a government without a government? Where do you even begin? Ryan knows that the eyes of the world are on him now – and many of them are unfriendly. In Beijing, in Tehran and even in Washington, there are those eager to take advantage. Soon they will make their moves; soon they will present Jack Ryan with a crisis so great even he could not imagine it.

The Bear and the Dragon by Tom Clancy

The Bear and the Dragon (2000)

Newly elected in his own right, Jack Ryan has found that being President has gotten no easier: domestic pitfalls await him at every turn; the Asian economy is going down the tubes; and now, in Moscow, someone may have tried to take out the chairman of the SVR – the former KGB – with a rocket-propelled grenade. Things are unstable enough in Russia without high-level assassination, but even more disturbing may be the identities of the potential assassins. Were they political enemies, the Russian Mafia, disaffected former KGB? Or, Ryan wonders, is something far more dangerous at work here?

Ryan is right to wonder. For even while Russian investigators pursue the case, and some of his most trusted eyes and ears, including antiterrorism specialist John Clark, head to Moscow, forces in China are moving forward with a plan of truly audacious proportions. Tired of what they view as the presumption of the West, eager to fulfill their destiny, they are taking matters into their own hands. If they succeed, the world as we know it will never look the same. If they fail the consequences may be unspeakable.

Red Rabbit by Tom Clancy

Red Rabbit (2002)

Red Rabbit takes us back to Jack Ryan’s early CIA years, giving us an insight into his first experiences fighting terrorism.

When young Jack Ryan joins the CIA as an analyst he is thrust into a world of political intrigue and conspiracy. Stationed in England, he quickly finds himself debriefing a Soviet defector with an extraordinary story to tell: senior Russian officials are plotting to assassinate Pope John Paul II.

The CIA novice must forget his inexperience and rely on all his wits to firstly discover the details of the plot – and then prevent its execution. For it is not just the Pope’s life that is at stake, but also the stability of the Western World.

The Teeth of the Tiger by Tom Clancy

The Teeth of the Tiger (2003)

Just before Jack Ryan stepped down as US President, he created the Campus, a secret organisation designed to operate in areas where the CIA and FBI couldn’t go – able to use any and all means to neutralise terrorists who threatened America.

Now his son, Jack Ryan, Jr, is part of that organisation and he’s on the front line when a group of Islamic terrorists backed up by Colombian drug smuggles strike at the heart of American society. With no conventional way to hit back at the shadowy ringleaders, it’s left to Jack Ryan Jr to take on the terrorists the only way he knows how…

Dead or Alive by Tom Clancy with Grant Blackwood

Dead or Alive, with Grant Blackwood (2010)

The Campus is facing its greatest threat: a sadistic killer known as the Emir. Mastermind of countless horrific attacks, the Emir has eluded capture by every law enforcement agency in the world. And he is about to unleash a monumental strike at the heart of America.

But on the Emir’s trail is intelligence expert Jack Ryan Jr. Following in his legendary father’s footsteps, he and his allies at the Campus are on a manhunt that will take them across the globe, into the shadowy arenas of political gamesmanship, in a race to prevent the fall of the West.

Locked On by Tom Clancy with Mark Greaney

Locked On, with Mark Greaney (2011)

When a deadly terrorist alliance creates the potential to blackmail any world power into submission, it’s got to be stopped before it is too late. That’s just the trigger Jack Ryan Jr needs to take his work for shadowy intelligence agency the Campus from the back room to the sharp end: black ops.

Meanwhile, his father, Jack Ryan Sr, campaigning for re-election as US President, is up against a privately funded vendetta to discredit him. Caught at the heart of the conspiracy is former Navy SEAL, John Clark. And Ryan Sr soon discovers that being his friends could have deadly consequences.

Threat Vector by Tom Clancy with Mark Greaney

Threat Vector, with Mark Greaney (2012)

When Jack Ryan Jr, on a highly secret, off-the-books Campus mission in Turkey, discovers that his team’s every move is monitored, he knows that US intelligence has been fatally compromised.

Back in the States, President Ryan watches in horror as China’s weakened leader bends to a war-mongering general intent on turning the East into a bloodbath. At the same time, America comes under cyber attack from China, crippling government and military infrastructure. President Ryan needs to act: a covert team must go in and neutralise these threats, and the Campus is the perfect fit.

Except a sinister figure known only as the Center is watching the Campus and Jack Ryan Jr’s every move. Any misstep will be their last.

Command Authority by Tom Clancy with Mark Greaney

Command Authority, with Mark Greaney (2013)

Decades ago, when he was a young CIA analyst, President Jack Ryan, Sr. was sent on what was supposed to be a simple support mission to investigate the death of an operative who had been looking into suspicious banking activities at a Swiss bank. Ryan’s dogged tenacity uncovered not only financial deceit, but also the existence of a KGB assassin, code-named Zenith. He was never able to find the killer. But in the shadowy world of covert operations, nothing stays hidden forever.

In the present, a new strongman has emerged in the ever-chaotic Russian republic – the enigmatic President Valeri Volodin. His rise to power was meteoric, but shrouded in deception and treachery. The foundations of his personal empire are built on a bloody secret from his past, and he will eliminate anyone who comes close to that truth. For he has set in motion a plot to return Russia to its former glory and might, with the rest of the world once again trembling in fear of the mighty Bear.

When an old friend of the Ryans is poisoned by a radioactive agent, the trail leads to Russia. And Jack Ryan, Jr. – aided by his compatriots John Clark and the covert warriors of the secretive Campus – must delve into an international conflict thirty years in the making, and finish what his father started.

With President Ryan fighting a desperate campaign to thwart Russian aggression, and his son fighting a silent war against a ruthless foe, the chances for global conflict grow ever greater – and the possibility of survival may soon be lost for all.

Full Force and Effect by Mark Greaney

Full Force and Effect, with Mark Greaney (2014)

Jack Ryan Jr is in Ho Chi Minh City tailing an ex-CIA operative with valuable documents when a hit leaves Jack with a corpse, no documents and only a bloodily scribbled note as a clue to what just happened. It sends him on the trail of a shadowy security firm with links to North Korea, newly resurgent under its young, power-hungry dictator. For the rogue state has found a way to finally make its nuclear ambitions a reality – no matter the cost to the world.

This is something President Jack Ryan will not permit – but North Korea and its backers have plans for US leader which will silence him for good.

On the ground and on the global stage, Jack Ryans Jr and Sr race against time to halt a madman from acquiring the world’s deadliest weapon…

Under Fire by Grant Blackwood

Under Fire by Grant Blackwood (2015)

Campus operative Jack Ryan Jr is in Tehran, when he meets an old friend, Seth. As they part, Seth passes Jack a key, gives him a cryptic message – and vanishes. Now MI6 and the CIA are after Jack. They’re desperate to find Seth. Jack tells them he knows nothing – but perhaps he knows enough to find his friend on his own.

In a dangerous foreign country, chased by agents from all sides, unsure who – if anyone – he can trust, Jack has few clues and no space for mistakes. He’s risking everything for Seth. But whose side is his old friend on? And what if it’s not Jack’s?

Commander in Chief by Mark Greaney

Commander in Chief by Mark Greaney (2015)

Russia is hurting. Its economy is tanking and its ‘adventures’ abroad have proved costly. President Volodin knows that his own survival depends on restoring Russian pride.

When a series of explosions, assassinations and attacks rock the global order, only one man in the West recognizes the true cause of the chaos: American President Jack Ryan.

With Russian troops massing on Europe’s borders, President Ryan cannot use military might without escalating conflict and playing into Volodin’s hands. Instead he turns to his covert intelligence agencies. They must uncover, infiltrate and neutralize each and every threat. But time is running out. And this war is about to go global.

Duty and Honour by Grant Blackwood

Duty and Honour by Grant Blackwood (2016)

Covert operative Jack Ryan Jr is enjoying some well-earned R&R when an attempt is made on his life. He survives, only to learn that another attempt on his life is imminent. Having barely survived the first time, Jack sets out to find out who wants him dead, and why.

Using clues left by his would-be assassin, Jack follows a trail that leads through France and Switzerland to Rostock, a shadowy security firm based in Germany. Jack knows its head, Jurgen Rostock, from a previous operation – one that has apparently drawn the man’s fury.

Without the resources of the Campus – the elite agency from which he is on a leave-of-absence – but with the help of an investigative journalist, Jack embarks on his own secret campaign to uncover the truth about Rostock. And what he finds is that they are up to something both big and very, very bad.

But what can one man do against all Rostock’s might? The world is about to find out.

True Faith and Allegiance by Mark Greaney

True Faith and Allegiance by Mark Greaney (2016)

A U.S. Navy Commander is attacked in a crowded restaurant while on leave. How did the assassin know his exact location?

In Tehran airport, a Canadian businessman is taken away to be interrogated. He has been a CIA operative for over a decade – why has his cover now been blown?

A massive information breach has compromised America’s intelligence agencies and around the globe, the noose is tightening.

So now, it’s up to the Campus to trace the leak to its source. Their investigation will uncover a threat that has wormed its way to the heart of power. And the only man who can stop it is the one closest to the danger: President Jack Ryan.

Point of Contact by Mike Maden

Point of Contact by Mike Maden (2017)

When Jack Ryan Jr is sent to Singapore on what seems a routine administrative task, he worries he’s being sidelined in the war on terror. But it soon becomes clear there’s more to the mission – and his unassuming new partner, Paul Brown – than meets the eye.

With North Korean missile testing in full swing and a deadly cyclone bearing down on the island nation, Brown and Ryan are tasked with uncovering a mole threatening an entirely new kind of warfare. And it soon becomes clear someone is willing to kill to cover their tracks.

As they race against time to escape both the murderous storm and a team of trained assassins, they must fight against power, prestige, leverage and blackmail to prevent the launch of another worldwide nuclear arms race. And they might not make it out alive.

Power and Empire by Marc Cameron

Power and Empire by Marc Cameron (2017)

As the world shakes from seemingly disparate outbursts of terrorism, Jack Ryan prepares for a crucial negotiation with President Zhou’s increasingly hostile China. But when a routine traffic stop on an isolated road in rural Texas leads to the discovery of a stolen USB stick, it becomes clear there is a dark connection between the attacks.

With tensions rising, a US spy ship in the South China Sea gets caught up in a violent storm – a storm which threatens to push it into the path of the Chinese navy, with potentially disastrous consequences.

As the international summit approaches, and the mastermind behind the violence remains at large, Jack Ryan has no choice but to face Zhou. Little does he realise he’s walking straight into the jaws of the dragon.

Line of Sight by Mike Maden

Line of Sight by Mike Maden (2018)

On a break between missions, Jack Ryan Jr is asked by his mother to visit Sarajevo and track down a girl whose life she saved during the war. Finally, he thinks, life might be quietening down.

That’s until he meets Aida – grown from a child into a beautiful and selfless woman. Jack finds himself drawn to her, not to mention impressed by her dangerous work helping Syrian refugees enter Europe. But the region is increasingly unstable, and just as Jack lets his guard down, Aida is violently kidnapped by the Serbian mafia.

With no official status, Jack’s pleas for help fall on deaf ears, and he realises he must act alone to save the woman he loves. But as the simmering tensions threaten to bubble over, Jack will soon discover Bosnia is a dangerous place to fly solo…

Oath of Office by Marc Cameron

Oath of Office by Marc Cameron (2018)

On a crowded tourist beach in Portugal, US operatives use a high-tech drone to watch a French arms dealer flirt with a beautiful woman. It’s only when she leaves that they realise she has shot him dead.

In Iran, protests are growing against the oppressive regime, whipped up by a charismatic student. Most external observers are excited, but on the ground a spy of questionable loyalty senses something is badly amiss.

And meanwhile, with the United States reeling from a string of natural disasters, Russian troops and ships are massing on the borders of the Ukraine, bringing the two powers ever closer to war.

Across the globe a conspiracy is brewing, so darkly brilliant that no-one has yet joined the dots. And the distracted President Ryan has little time to play catch-up: little does he know that he faces a madman with a plan more devastating than he could possibly imagine…

Enemy Contact by Mike Maden

Enemy Contact (2019)

On a remote island off the coast of Argentina, a team of elite counter-terror commandos prepare to assault a newly-discovered Hezbollah hideout.

What they don’t expect is to be brutally ambushed themselves – slaughtered with no survivors.

What they don’t realise is that, on screens around the world, the enemies of the West are watching.

Back in Washington DC, the growing obstruction in the Senate has reached crippling levels, as a crucial treaty to strength NATO in Eastern Europe is inexplicably blocked. Suspecting that key politicians may have been compromised – but aware of the explosive consequences of making such accusations in public – the President dispatches Jack Ryan Jr to Poland to investigate.

In Warsaw, Jack partners with beautiful and brilliant Polish agent Liliana Zaleski, and it’s not long before they find evidence of a tangled web of corruption. But what Jack and Liliana don’t realise is that this conspiracy stretches further than they could ever have imagined, and the danger has already crept terrifyingly close to home…

Other books set in the Jack Ryan universe:

These books take place in the same world as those with Jack Ryan, and feature some of the same characters.

Without Remorse by Tom Clancy

Without Remorse (1993)

It is 1970. Back in the US after serving as a Navy SEAL in Vietnam, John Kelly meets a woman who will change his life forever. She has recently escaped from a nightmare world of unimaginable suffering, yet before they can plan a future together, the horrors of her past reach out to snatch her from him. Kelly vows to gain revenge – but finds there are others who have need of his deadly skills.

In Washington a high-risk operation is being planned to rescue a key group of prisoners from a POW camp deep within North Vietnam. Kelly has his own mission; the Pentagon want him for theirs. As he attempts to juggle the two, he must step into a netherworld as perilous as any he has ever known – from which he may never return.

Rainbow Six by Tom Clancy

Rainbow Six (1998)

Newly named head of an elite multinational task force, John Clark faces the world’s greatest fear: international terrorism. And following each terrifying new outbreak – the ghosts from his own past.

The challenge of a new mission is just what Clark needs, but the opportunities come faster than he expected. Hostage-taking at a Swiss bank. The kidnapping of an international trader. Carnage at a theme park in Spain. Each incident seems separate, yet the timing disturbs Clark.

Is there a connection? Is he being tested? Or is there a bigger threat out there, from terrorists so extreme that no government is ready to admit their existence.

Support and Defend by Mark Greaney

Support and Defend, with Mark Greaney (2014)

Dominic Caruso. Nephew of President Jack Ryan. FBI agent and operator for The Campus, a top secret intelligence agency that works off the books for the U.S. government. Already scarred by the death of his brother, Caruso is devastated when he can’t save a friend and his family from a terrorist attack.

Ethan Ross was a mid-level staffer for the National Security Council. Now he’s a wanted fugitive on the run with a micro-drive that contains enough information to wreck American intelligence efforts around the world. The CIA is desperate to get the drive back, but so are the Russians and various terrorist groups, all of whom are closer to catching the fugitive. Only Caruso stands in their way, but can he succeed without the aid of his Campus colleagues?

There you have it – Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan books in order! How many have you read? Let us know in the comments below…

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5 Comments

    Read all but “Enemy Contact”. Have all in hardback. Great reads.

    one of the best story tellers I have ever read eqwell to Wilbur smith read all of them tryring to collect all jack ryan books

    I have read them all and loved Jack Ryan the President Jack Ryan Jr. need to become more moral and maybe get married I do not feel he is a whole person. While as his father is. He needs to have a consience and ideals so I can really love him. Dagny

    I have read and enjoyed all TOM CLANCY written books. My favourite book is Red Storm Rising and my favourite chapter is “3 shakes” from clear and
    present danger. (I remember the chapter title being different : something like “19 nanoseconds”).

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