23 August 2016

Review: A DEATH IN SWEDEN, Kevin Wignall

Synopsis (Amazon)

 Dan Hendricks is a man in need of a lifeline. A former CIA operative, he is now an agent for hire by foreign powers on the hunt for dangerous fugitives. It’s a lethal world at the best of times, and Dan knows his number is almost up. His next job could be his last—and his next job is his biggest yet.

The target sounds trackable enough: Jacques Fillon, who gave up his life trying to save a fellow passenger following a bus crash in northern Sweden. But the man was something of an enigma in this rural community, and his death exposes his greatest secret: Jacques Fillon never existed at all.

Dan is tasked with uncovering Fillon’s true identity—but can he do so before his own past catches up with him?

My Take

Quite a gripping thriller. 

A long standing CIA boss has been made head of ODNI, the US Office of National Intelligence. Elements of the CIA are unhappy with his appointment and have begun eliminating some of the operatives who are loyal to him.

I lost count of the number of agents who were killed in this story - at least twenty- and I certainly would not like to get on the wrong side of Dan Hendricks.

All of the action takes place overseas: Sweden, Paris, Berlin, just to name a few places. One of the "bad guys" is the American ambassador in Berlin who has covered up a crime committed by his son, now a US Congressman, some 14 years earlier in Paris.

There is some strange morality in this tale - Hendricks thinks nothing of eliminating five or six men who get in his way, but then talks scathingly of people being unlawfully killed. It makes you ask when murder is murder.

There is an interesting twist in the tale as we find out what was really behind Jacques Fillon sacrificing himself in the bus crash.

My Rating: 4.3

About the author

Kevin Wignall is a British writer, born in Brussels in 1967. He spent many years as an army child in different parts of Europe, and went on to study politics and international relations at Lancaster University. He became a full-time writer after the publication of his first book, People Die (2001). His other novels are Among the Dead (2002); Who Is Conrad Hirst? (2007), shortlisted for the Edgar Award and the Barry Award; and Dark Flag (2010). The Hunter's Prayer was originally titled For the Dogs in the USA. The film The Hunter's Prayer, directed by Jonathan Mostow and starring Sam Worthington and Odeya Rush, will be released worldwide in 2016.

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