“Child 44”

October 14, 2008 at 4:05 pm | Posted in Fiction | Leave a comment

I picked up Tom Rob Smith’s Child 44 because it was on the Booker long list.  As usual, I didn’t read the book jacket.  It sat on my shelf, looking very dense and Soviet, and I confess I didn’t really want to read it.  Little did I know, it would turn out to be one of the most pulse-pounding, page-turning, exciting books I would read all year.  I started it during my lunch break, and finished it before 10 PM last night, though I was sure that this 400+ page book would take me two days.

I was instantly reminded of Smilla’s Sense of Snow, another superb literary thriller.  This was good, because for some reason I was expecting tanks and submarines, two factors that will generally keep me from watching a movie and certainly from reading a book.

Child 44 really has it all.  It’s got a plot.  It’s got atmosphere.  It’s got well defined characters.  It’s also got some very graphic scenes, right from the first page, so if you’re sensitive don’t read it before bed.

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