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Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

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Tom Rob Smith's debut novel, Child 44, is an often bleak outline of post war Russia, a totalitarian state where there is no crime; for it to exist would mean an ineffective military and secret service, which under Stalin's rule is just not acceptable. Families live in fear that the wrong word ... Read review
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Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

With so many new books in the crime and thriller field vying for our attention, alert ... more

readers need all the help they can get. In the
case of Tom Rob Smith's Child 44, the numerous
glowing reviews were preceded by a lively word of
mouth on the book. The latter can often be
misleading, but not in this case -- this is a very
exciting debut. It is set in the Soviet Union and
in the year 1953; Stalin's reign of terror is at
its height, and those who stand up against the
might of the state vanish into the labour camps 
or vanish altogether. With this background, it is
an audacious move on Tom Rob Smiths part to put
his hero right at the heart of this hideous
regime, as an officer in no less than the brutal
Ministry State Security.Leo Demidov is, basically,
an instrument of the state -- by no means a
villain, but one who tries to look not too closely
into the repressive work he does. His superiors
remind him that there is no crime in Soviet Union,
and he is somehow able to maintain its fiction in
his mind even as he tracks down and punishes the
miscreants.  The body of a young boy is found on
railway tracks in Moscow, and Demidov is quickly
informed that there is nothing to the case. He
quickly realises that something unpleasant is
being covered over here, but is forced to obey his
orders.  However, things begin to quickly unravel,
and this ex-hero of state suddenly finds himself
in disgrace, exiled with his wife Raisa to a town
in the Ural Mountains. And things will get worse
for him -- not only the murder of another child,
but even the life and safety of his wife. Tom Rob
Smiths beleaguered hero is a protagonist who we
know will (at some point) have to rebel against
the totalitarian state he works for. But it is the
suspense of waiting for this moment as much as the
exigencies of the thriller plot that makes this
such a compelling novel. --Barry Forshaw

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Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

With so many new books in the crime and thriller field vying for our attention, alert ... more

readers need all the help they can get. In the
case of Tom Rob Smith's Child 44, the numerous
glowing reviews were preceded by a lively word of
mouth on the book. The latter can often be
misleading, but not in this case -- this is a very
exciting debut. It is set in the Soviet Union and
in the year 1953; Stalin's reign of terror is at
its height, and those who stand up against the
might of the state vanish into the labour camps 
or vanish altogether. With this background, it is
an audacious move on Tom Rob Smiths part to put
his hero right at the heart of this hideous
regime, as an officer in no less than the brutal
Ministry State Security.Leo Demidov is, basically,
an instrument of the state -- by no means a
villain, but one who tries to look not too closely
into the repressive work he does. His superiors
remind him that there is no crime in Soviet Union,
and he is somehow able to maintain its fiction in
his mind even as he tracks down and punishes the
miscreants.  The body of a young boy is found on
railway tracks in Moscow, and Demidov is quickly
informed that there is nothing to the case. He
quickly realises that something unpleasant is
being covered over here, but is forced to obey his
orders.  However, things begin to quickly unravel,
and this ex-hero of state suddenly finds himself
in disgrace, exiled with his wife Raisa to a town
in the Ural Mountains. And things will get worse
for him -- not only the murder of another child,
but even the life and safety of his wife. Tom Rob
Smiths beleaguered hero is a protagonist who we
know will (at some point) have to rebel against
the totalitarian state he works for. But it is the
suspense of waiting for this moment as much as the
exigencies of the thriller plot that makes this
such a compelling novel. --Barry Forshaw

 Visit Shop  >
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Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

Tom Rob Smith - Child 44

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Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith

In Soviet Russia, Leo Demidov is after a killer that the State denies exists. But he's in ... more

danger himself - from the country he's trying to
protect

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Child 44 (unabridged audio book) - Tom Rob Smith

Child 44 (unabridged audio book) - Tom Rob Smith

MGB officer Leo is a man who never questions the Party Line. He arrests whomever he is ... more

told to arrest. He dismisses the horrific death of
a young boy because he is told to, because he
believes the Party stance that there can be no
murder in Communist Russia. Leo is the perfect
soldier of the regime. But suddenly his confidence
that everything he does serves a great good is
shaken. He is forced to watch a man he knows to be
innocent be brutally tortured. And then he is told
to arrest his own wife. Leo understands how the
State works: Trust and check, but check
particularly on those we trust. He faces a stark
choice: his wife or his life. And still the
killings of children continue...

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User reviews »

A sickening crime in a crime-free 50s Russia?

AdvantagesPacy, detailed and hard to put down

DisadvantagesNothing

"Tom Rob Smith's debut novel, Child 44, is an often bleak outline of post war Russia, a totalitarian state where there is no crime; for it to exist would mean an ineffective military and secret service, which under Stalin's rule is just not acceptable. Families live in fear that the wrong word here or there would see the rest of their lives shortened considerably and spent in horrific conditions, sympathy non-existent. Leo Demidov is a high ranking ..." Read review
21.07.2013

Ciao members have rated this review on average: very helpful

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Product Information for "Child 44 - Tom Rob Smith" »

Manufacturer's product description

MGB officer Leo is a man who never questions the Party Line. He arrests whomever he is told to arrest.

Product details

Title Child 44
Author Tom Rob Smith
All Authors Tom Rob Smith
Publisher Simon & Schuster
ISBN 1847371264
EAN 9781847371263

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Listed on Ciao since 19/10/2009

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