Jeffery Deaver- Garden of Beasts (Pocket Star Books 2005) 4.5 Stars
It’s 1936 and Germany is trying to hide the fact that they are rearming. Paul Schumann is an assassin for hire and has just been caught by the government. He is given two choices either he does one last assassination, this time for the government, or he will be in line for the electric chair. Acting like a freelance sports journalist coming to Berlin for the Olympics, Schumann has been told to locate and eliminate Reinhard Ernst, the man responsible for the German rearmament and Hitler’s power. Hitler’s men are everywhere and he must avoid detection, but staying out of trouble in paranoid Germany is not an easy task. While being hunting by Germany’s best investigators, he must accomplish his mission, or die a horrible death.
The introduction to Garden of Beasts was interesting as we see the main character being taken captive, which is an odd way to start the book, but it made it much more interesting. This intro set the stage for all the following events to fall into place. It was a key scene in the nail-biting plot that the reader’s view. We see the main character grow form a heartless assassin into a man who really is deeper and more considerate than we are originally led to believe, Paul Schumann surprises himself at times. He was an incredibly deep character with many different sides. One thing I did find a little out of character was the budding romance. It just did not really fit into Paul Schumann’s profile in my opinion. I loved all the twists involved in this book as it left me never knowing just what was coming next. It was a job well-done from an amazingly talented author, who clearly did his research on this one. I enjoyed all the details I was learning about a time period I find to be very interesting. I especially loved the fact that I found out what Tiergarten actually means (Garden of Beasts).
I recommend Garden of Beasts to Deaver fans, thriller readers, and anyone who loves the World War eras.
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