Since this is the summer, and beach reading is in fashion, I figure it's time to have a slightly more leisurely look at some of the books that are not written by King, Patterson, or Cornwell. These are books that have not had millions of dollars in advertizing dropped on them, but are suburb nonetheless.
Now if only Drummond can remember why people are trying to kill him....
“Once a Spy” is a very well put together thriller that doesn't slow down until you finish the novel. While the fight / chase scenes are intelligent and creative, the real fun of the novel comes in between battles, in the quiet moments while Drummond Clarke is still lucid and remembers everything from his former life as a spy. This is when Charlie learns about his past, from moments as simple as why his father missed his high school graduation (Drummond was off the coast of Saudi Arabia in a wetsuit), to why he wasn't allowed to go into the local candy store (couldn't have a young Charlie ruining a covert dead drop, now could they?). The father and son moments are lightly handled, and not hitting the reader over the head with hammer labeled SUBTLETY. Instead of bonding over a camping trip, or fishing, it's over the body of a newly knocked out assassin.
The action / spy sequences are also well done. No one, adversary or protagonist, is stupid in this book. While Drummond is useful in a firefight, the adrenaline can only last so long, and so can the lucidity. It is up to Charlie in these moments, and he's being graded on a sharp learning curve.
It's certainly worth the ride.
Buy it here, now: Once A Spy