Sunday, May 23, 2010

Book Review: The Killer by Tom Hinshelwood

The Killer The Killer by Tom Hinshelwood

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Victor is an assassin, a hired gun with few possessions and no relationships beyond the next target. Paid to kill at Latvian national and recover a small computer flash drive, Victor accomplishes his task with cool and calculating efficiency. Only then the hunter becomes the hunted as he is set upon by a seven member kill team in a Paris hotel and has to use all of his skills and wit to survive the ensuing bloodbath. Hoping to figure out who set him up and why, he reluctantly teams up with Rebecca, his rogue CIA handler, and soon finds himself in the cross hairs of killers from around the world. Victor must use all of his cold blooded prowess to be the last man standing. This was a very exciting and action packed novel, Hinshelwood keeps the pace breathless throughout as we switch locations from the intelligence offices of the United States and Russia to the brutal killers that track Victor across Europe. Victor is a fascinating character, the master of disguise and the dark art of assassination, he reminded me of Richard Stark's great character, the anti-hero and master thief Parker, with his single minded approach to survival. This book works well on a couple of levels: as a spy/espionage thriller and as a straight up action story that begs to be adapted for the big screen, particularly an epic car chase and mano e mano battle to death in the book's final quarter. Note that the level of violence of the this book is nearly of James Ellroy proportions, so those with an aversion to blood may want to look elsewhere. But for action or espionage fans, this was a very well written and compelling story that has twists and turns right up to the end and is highly recommended. The Killer -

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