Book: Killing Rain by Barry Eisler

Very good spy thriller

Barry Eisler
Killing Rain
G. P. Putnam's Sons, 2005
ISBN: 0-399-15284-9
337 pages

Killing Rain is Barry Eisler's the fourth book. Like his earlier books, Rain Fall, Hard Rain, and Rain Storm, it's a spy thriller in which the main character, John Rain, is a freelance assassin. His specialty is making his assassinations look natural so as to attract a minimum of unwanted attention to himself and his clients.

As the book begins, he's hired by Israeli intelligence to kill an Israeli citizen who has been selling his bomb-making expertise to people who aren't particularly friendly to Israel. The Israelis don't want to do the job themselves because the target seems to have some association with the CIA and they don't want attract that organization's ire.

Unusually for John Rain, the assassination doesn't go exactly as planned and that puts him in an awkward position. He wants to finish the job for the sake of his reputation and to get paid, but his target will surely be taking greater security precautions. And if he has revealed himself to the CIA, well, that would be bad. And what do the Israelis think?

In this book, Rain works with a partner called "Dox". He and Rain were in the US military together and it seems that his nickname is short for "unorthodox". The plot has a satisfying number of twists and there are more than a few scenes in which the action is pretty thrilling. The descriptions of the settings are very good too, but when Mr Eisler tells us what Rain had for dinner, it occasionally starts to sound a bit like a travelogue. But that's a pretty trivial complaint about a very good book. The last three short chapters provide another twist in that we get a perspective different from Rain's.

Posted: Wed - May 31, 2006 at 08:30   Main   Category: