Thanks to the publisher for sending me a free copy of the book.
Synopsis (from Goodreads):
Former CIA case officer Charles Jenkins is a man at a crossroads: in his early sixties, he has a family, a new baby on the way, and a security consulting business on the brink of bankruptcy. Then his former bureau chief shows up at his house with a risky new assignment: travel undercover to Moscow and locate a Russian agent believed to be killing members of a clandestine US spy cell known as the seven sisters.
Desperate for money, Jenkins agrees to the mission and heads to the Russian capital. But when he finds the mastermind agent behind the assassinations—the so-called eighth sister—she is not who or what he was led to believe. Then again, neither is anyone else in this deadly game of cat and mouse.
Pursued by a dogged Russian intelligence officer, Jenkins executes a daring escape across the Black Sea, only to find himself abandoned by the agency he serves. With his family and freedom at risk, Jenkins is in the fight of his life—against his own country.
This is the second book I’ve read recently that focused on Russia, and I’m loving it. Russia is a complete enigma to me, and I have many thoughts and ideas based on what I hear in the media, but beyond that my knowledge is nill. So reading these books that take me behind the curtain have me completely captivated.
My verdict: it was a hit. I don’t often gravitate towards the genre of “spy thriller” (is that a genre, or did I just make that up?) because I usually need an emotional connection to at least one character to enjoy a book, and I rarely find that in this type of setting. However, I found myself really invested in Charlie’s life and his connection to his wife and son. And despite her seeming lack of feeling and connection to anyone, Anna/Paulina portrayed the role of a stereotypical Russian (or at least stereotypical based on my assumptions) so well that I couldn’t look away (you’ll have to read the book to figure out her role in the story). A fellow reader had commented to me recently that she’s a fan of Dugoni’s writing because she really enjoys his character development, and I have to agree. Watching the characters grow and change throughout the book, especially Charlie, really helped with the believability factor of the plot line.
I also really enjoyed the pacing of the story. It’s fast with lots of action, and yet not so fast that I couldn’t wrap my head around it. Despite being a bit of a beast (just shy of 500 pages), I flew through it. The fact that I was so invested in the livelihood of the main character kept me engaged, as opposed to just reading on the surface. I have to admit that I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. I know, I know. Why would I have even agreed to read and review a book I wasn’t sure I’d love? I’m always trying to read outside my comfort zone and be introduced to genres, characters, writing styles, and authors I may not have found in my normal day-to-day book stumbling. So I picked this one up mostly out of curiosity, and now I’m sitting here wondering how long I’ll have to wait for the next installment of the series.
I’m definitely going to be recommending this series to anyone looking for a good, meaty, crime/spy/espionage thriller with engaging characters and a fast pace.
Highly recommend. ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️
I’m excited to be partnering with TLC Book Tours to share a copy of The Eighth Sister with one of you! To enter is very simple: leave a comment below with a spy thriller recommendation for fellow booknerds to check out. Don’t have a spy thriller to recommend? How about a fast-paced, edge-of-your-seat page-turner. I’ll give you extra entries for following my blog and my Bookstagram, as well as any of the author’s social media pages. Just let me know in your comments. **Now the nitty gritty details: limited to US and Canadian addresses only. Giveaway will close on Friday night, 4/26/19, at 11:59 PM. Winner will be notified via email during the first part of next week and will have 48 hours to reply or the copy will be offered to the next name drawn.
Book stats: Hardcover & paperback, 478 pages, Thomas & Mercer, April 9, 2019
Thank you to TLC Book Tours for organizing this tour. Follow the rest of the tour stops Here.