Daniel Silva’s gripping thriller, The Kill Artist, is exactly what I want from this type of book. Silva takes multiple perspective and locations, and weaves them together into a story I couldn’t put down. I listened to the last 90 minutes of the audio very late at night, because I had to know the final twists before sleeping.
Gabriel Allon is our hero. He’s conflicted, and lives with two intersecting careers. In one, he’s a renowned art restorer, immersed in beauty and delicate movement. In the other, he’s a retired agent for a secret division of the Israeli Ministry of Defense. In The Kill Artist, Allon is brought out of retirement to track down a killer with connections to his personal life.
To me, Silva writes in the tradition of the classic spy thrillers. He introduces a variety of characters, and then skillfully weaves their perspectives together into a climactic ending. And then, he throws a twist or two into the story so you know he’s in charge. It’s been a long time since I read a spy thriller, and this series was recommended to me on Litsy. In fact, it’s my co-host for the #Booked2018 reading challenge who’s my encourager. And I’m glad of it!
Silva writes Allon with spare prose, because he’s a man with straightforward needs. He needs to finish this job and get back to his restoration project. The locations come alive with just the right amount of description. Silva knows how to paint the picture, but also when to back off and let your imagination fill in the smaller details. This makes for a fast, compelling read.
The narrator, George Guidall, was just named to Audible’s Hall of Fame. I can easily see why. Guidall manages many voices, accents, and their accompanying tones with aplomb. Many times it seemed as if a second narrator had entered the studio, since Guidall was able to include so much vocal diversity in Silva’s passages.
I liked The Kill Artist and Gabriel Allon so much that I picked up the second book in the series right away. Daniel Silva writes distracting and absorbing novels!