Monday, 10 February 2014

Terry Hayes - I Am Pilgrim

Wow this was a marathon read for me. It has been a long time since I took so long to read a book. This book is huge and heavy (700 pages!) This book is very intense. It has multiple plot lines, but hard as I tried to put it down I was unable to walk away from it, something kept drawing me back ( and lengthening my arm as I carried it back and forth from work).

As a scriptwriter Terry has the skills to make this a page turner and you can see that it is crying out to be made into a film.
There are 3 plot lines, a police procedural murder mystery, a worrying terrorist plot, and a deep, deep cover spy thriller. Lots of exotic locations .It is very clever.

I suspect that Terry Hayes has done reams of research because the terrorist plot seemed frighteningly plausible. I also enjoyed us getting into the mind of the terrorist and we almost became invested in his plot, I never felt that he was the enemy, a real coup here to make a terrorist empathic to the reader. His characterisation is great which I think is why I did not want to leave them and the book stays with you.
My only very small caveate is that it there is almost enough material in this one book for two books and that  might have made it less bulky ( there was a lot of back story that could have been teased out in future books - I assume we will be reading more of  Pilgrim soon? - and yes I will be unable to resist the series if and when it comes.) On the other hand it might just be that it was that bulk of story that made it so immersive.

I suggest you buy it as an ebook add then it will occupy your entire holiday, and you will want everyone else to read it so you can discuss it.

I suspect this book is too large for most reading groups to tackle but if they can be persuaded then there are many, many themes to discuss.

Monday, 3 February 2014

Mario Reading - The Templar Prophecy

Another fast paced intelligent thriller from Mario Reading. This time it is set in three time frames. The crusades, Hitler's last few days, and the present day. the present day moves from Mexico to Germany.
The thread that is woven through the book is an ancient religious artifact that of the Holy Lance or Spear of Destiny.

What I really like about Mario's books is that they are well researched, and the situation and characters feel real. We have a flawed hero unable to resist the very flawed heroine. I cannot say too much without providing spoilers. Suffice to say it is a good writer that can make me momentarily empathise with Nazis!

A good read and an ideal book to take away on a break or a holiday.