Paul Schumann is a contract hit man for the mob in 1936. But with Prohibition over and the gang wars associated with it coming to an end, Schumann is finding less and less work. He is contracted for a hit. But this time, he's caught and finds that he's been set up. He's taken to meet an official in Army Intelligence and given a choice: He can spend the rest of his life in jail, or he can help his country. He is to pose as a member of the 1936 Olympic team, travel to Berlin, and kill a high-ranking Nazi close to Hitler....
©2003 Jeffery Deaver (P)2005 W F Howes Ltd
I really enjoyed this book. There where some fantastic characters and plot twist that I love so much in Deaver's book. The next book I pick will be another Deaver!
Well read, I would look for more by this reader
yes, I was unhappy when I had to take a break from listening
Near the top. Outstanding plot and narration
KriPo inspector Khol who was a voice of reason in a world of madness
All well performed
The death of a character and his dying departure, cast away in a boat on a river...
It was moving after all he'd done.
I was blown away by Jeffrey Deaver's Blue Nowhere and I've enjoyed a number of his books featuring Lincoln Rhymes. But, to be honest, I feel his potential is constrained by the Rhymes formula. I realise it's now some 10 years since Garden of Beasts was first published; but no matter. Although the setting is pre war Berlin, the issues are timeless.
This is what great crime writing is all about. The central characters are committed and filled with human qualities. It's easy to understand their motivation. It's also a great whodunit. Traditional policing, making sense of the clues and following the trail from one location to another. The hunter and the hunted add great tension to an action packed plot. KriPo officer Khol is the Holmes whose deduction is impeccable. But more than that, he's Everyman. The voice of reason in an age of pro Hitler insanity and madness. I warmed to him very quickly as a character and enjoyed his narrative which provided insight and balance throughout.
Schumann, the central figure is well rounded anti hero. He's fallible, vulnerable and has divided loyalties. The conflicts are absolutely compelling. Who should he trust, love, leave, follow. I was literally breathless a couple of times, willing the outcome in a particular way.
But over and above all, it's a bang on murder, mystery. It's a thriller in every sense filled with twists and turns. We know who's killed and why, but the tension and pace of this story is in the detail of the chase. The setting and characters truly come alive. As do uncomfortable issues of genocide, racial supremacy, an unholy Nazi triumvirate, conflicting national and moral loyalty...
I finished this amazing story (Audible version) after 0400 this morning. The last three hours literally kept me totally absorbed and the twists and turns in the plot are there to the very end. Loved it.
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