Thursday, July 16, 2009

Book Review: Red to Black

Title: Red to Black
Author: Alex Dryden
Rating: ***1/2
Tags: russia, putin, thriller, fiction, spies, kgb

This book is one of two things. Either it is written by a man who is a good journalist but mediocre novelist, letting his book get overwhelmed by the message that Vladimir Putin is working to take over the economies and thus politics of the countries of the European Union. Alternatively, the book is written by a clever author who makes you believe the first option.

The story is about Finn, a British spy, and Anna, a Russian spy. Finn is Anna's assignment, and the two fall in love. Finn is handling a high value spy, a top level associate of Putin's. Finn is desperately trying to find out Putin's "Plan", and the novel is the story of his efforts.

Anna is the narrator, and we learn something of her life as the daughter of a KGB agent. She hates him, yet becomes an agent herself in an attempt to please him.

The story is told at an odd remove. A lot of what happens we learn through Anna's discovering Finn's story by reading it while he is missing, and that lessens to some degree the reader's involvement in the story.

Worth a read, though I won't rush out to buy this author's subsequent books.

Publication Ecco (2009), Hardcover, 384 pages
Publication date 2009
ISBN 0061803863 / 9780061803864

No comments: