A famous Russian writer and ex-paratrooper named Alexander Kurbsky has gotten fed up with the Putin government, and decides he wants to “disappear” into the West. He is under no illusions, however, about how the news will be greeted at home, having seen too many of his countrymen die mysteriously at the hands of the thuggish Russian security services, so he makes elaborate plans with Charles Ferguson, Sean Dillon, and the rest of the group known informally as the “Prime Minister’s private army” for his escape and concealment.
It’s a real coup for the West except for one thing: Kurbsky is still working for the Russians. The plan is to infiltrate British and American intelligence at the highest levels, and he has his own motivations for doing the most effective job possible. He does not care what he has to do or where he has to go...or whom he has to kill.
Filled with suspense, driven by characters of complexity and passion, A Darker Place once again proves that, in the words of the Associated Press, “When it comes to thriller writers, one name stands well above the crowd—Jack Higgins.”
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Since The Eagle Has Landed—one of the biggest-selling thrillers of all time—every novel Jack Higgins has written has become an international bestseller. He has had simultaneous number-one bestsellers in hardcover and paperback, and many of his books have been made into successful movies, including The Eagle Has Landed, To Catch a King, On Dangerous Ground, Eye of the Storm, and Thunder Point. He has degrees in sociology, social psychology, and economics from the University of London, and a doctorate in media from Leeds Metropolitan University. A fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, and an expert scuba diver and marksman, Higgins lives in Jersey on the Channel Islands.From Booklist:
The veteran author of political thrillers turns in another lackluster performance. As usual, the story contains the raw material for a first-rate novel: a Russian writer makes arrangements with Sean Dillon, the IRA terrorist turned British intelligence agent, and his colleagues in the “Prime Minister’s private army” to leave Russia and come to Britain. However, as Higgins reveals very early on, the writer is actually working for the Russians, and his deadly mission could wreak havoc at the top levels of the international intelligence community. Unfortunately, Higgins seems to be sleepwalking his way through the novel: the book opens, for example, with a clumsy scene in which one character tells another character something she already knows, purely for the benefit of the reader. The characters in the novel feel lifeless, even the ones whom the author has been writing about for years (there are more than a dozen Sean Dillon novels), and Higgins’ decision to reveal the Russian writer’s secret agenda at the beginning of the novel seems ill-considered: the story would have been more interesting, and certainly more surprising, if readers were left to wonder what this fellow was up to and whether he was keeping secrets. Higgins retains a large if shrinking fan base and that should ensure interest in the novel, but it’s definitely not one of his best. --David Pitt
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Book Description G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2009. Hardcover. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M000729493X