Friday, September 18, 2009

The Kingmaker (by Brian Haig)

Reviewed by Tracy L. Karol

The Kingmaker

In this outing, our hero, Sean Drummond, is summoned to defend a man he despises who has been accused of espionage. The man is a general, no less, and is married to the woman Drummond loved in college.

While the general is clearly a jerk and his wife, a CIA agent, put up with a lot of gruff from him (which Drummond wonders continuously WHY she ever married the guy), Drummond begins to have his suspicions if, despite his otherwise odious personality, he is truly guilty of the crimes he of which is accused. If so, he would be the greatest traitor our country has ever seen, having given secrets to the Russians and, before that, the Soviets for decades.

This is a classic mystery. In fact, Haig gets so much right in this book about how Russia actually operates and how the Soviet Union fell, along with how the new powers came to be, that his latest novel, The Hunted, was inspired by a man who read this novel and lived through that time. Read my review on The Hunted for more. Clearly Haig known that of which he writes, and he writes it expertly. He knows just when to insert a line of humorous dialogue or acerbic wit. Think John Corey in a military uniform. I love Sean Drummond! If you haven't read the Drummond series, this is as good as any place to start, but I recommend reading all his books.

His latest novel does not feature Drummond, but is still likely the best novel I've read in years. Brian Haig is, in my opinion, in league with Nelson DeMille, Vince Flynn, Robert Crais, Lee Child, and others. I'm so glad I discovered him. This novel will have you hooked until the very end. Enjoy!