I was lucky that my boss remembered I liked The Secret Speech and Child 44, and gave this to me once he had finished reading it. Unfortunately, it definitely feels like it is the final book in what must be a trilogy.
This book starts in the 50s when Leo is still a KGB Agent and part of a group looking after black American singer Jesse Austin who is a vocal and prominent supporter of communism. we also witness Leo meeting the woman who will become his wife – Raisa.
We then jump forward in time to the 80s when Leo is no longer working for the KGB and Raisa takes their two daughters on a trip to New York as part of a dimplomatic mission. Events seemingly spiral out of control and this part of the story ends with the family in ruins and Leo determined to exact his revenge, no matter how long it takes.
The rest of the story follows Leo in the 15 or so years following tis devastating event as he travels across Afghanistan and to America to find answers to the questions that he so desperately needs to ask to the right person – but will the truth really set him free?
I was really sad when I realised that this was probably the final book – the first two were fantastic. There were some real heart-wrenching moments in this one, but I am not sure that overall it was a fitting end to the trilogy. I was still left wanting more.
Out of the three books, it was definitely the weakest, and yet still a brilliant read. The parts in Afghanistan were eye-opening especially.