Rasputin's Shadow by Raymond Khoury

3.5 stars. 

Ah yet another 3.5 stars for another book - this is not coincidence though! I picked this book up at the library and it took me a few weeks to get through as I kept putting it down for a few days. Not because I didn't overall enjoy the book, just a busy schedule and it wasn't the fastest paced book throughout the first half or so. 

The story starts with a group of miners who are playing cards and end up killing one another. This takes part in around 1920s Russia. We then jump ahead to present day where we follow to FBI agents, Reilly and Aparo. Reilly is one of our main characters and throughout the story is one of the few characters where, in their chapters, uses 'I' not Reilly. They are investigating a case where a man has fell from a window in an apartment and the couple who live in the apartment, the Sokolov's. The story follows this case mainly, the wife has been kidnapped and her husband is going to try and get her back. Step in another character, Koschey, who wants the husband and his 'technology'. The rest of the story would be giving too much away but there are some parts throughout the book which go back to around 1910-1920 to follow Rasputin in Russia. These parts of the story are written in a journal and seem to make no sense throughout the book until towards the end. 

I found overall that the story was good once I found what on earth was going on. It can be a bit confusing with the back story in Russia and trying to found out who the husband (Leo) is and what everyone wants from him. The beginning of the story was a little slow going but once you get half way the book becomes a bit more of a page turner. The different storylines and characters make sense too. There isn't mass amounts of back story for all the characters except three - even then, these back stories are generally things you want to know to make a little more sense of the premise and why everything connects. Although this book is only around 360 pages, it certainly felt like a big book; the pages are massive and the writing is small. A big book that needed all the content though to make the story worth reading and to make sense. 

Overall, a decent read. Definitely something to read if you like crime and thriller reads. Be patient though as there is a lot to get through but I enjoyed finding everything out. 

Happy reading :) 


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