While in England on an unsanctioned assignment, Sean Garrett witnesses the shooting of a distinguished Cambridge professor by elite contract killer David Laurent. With his cover blown, Garrett is on the run from an assassin desperate to erase his tracks, and authorities who believe he is responsible for the murder.
Banastre Montjoy, a burned-out head of section at the Secret Intelligence Service, is in a race himself to discover if the scholar's death is linked to a bombing of the London Underground a year earlier. Montjoy's nemesis, the power-hungry and scheming Berwyn Rees, seeks to drum his rival out of MI6, while maneuvering to become deputy chief.
With time running out, SOG operators Tre Ward and Brian Bishop are sent in by the CIA to locate and extract Garrett. As Laurent, MI5, and Scotland Yard close in on their target, Montjoy uncovers a secret that someone inside the British government has sought to keep buried since World War II.
Plot: This is a fast-paced, skillfully constructed international thriller. The novel is amazingly complex and often riveting.
Prose: The writer is highly skilled. The prose is clear, crisp, and moves along at a good pace.
Originality: While some aspects of the plot may be familiar to readers, the book's complexity and the author's attention to detail will make it stand out in a crowded market.
Character Development: The characters here are solidly developed, especially Sean Garrett—in whom readers will become invested. However, the book suffers from too many minor characters, many of which seem interchangeable.
Date Submitted: August 24, 2017
“Extraordinary…a gloriously rich debut thriller…tailor-made for fans of John Le Carré, Alan Furst, and Daniel Silva.”