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Sunday 31 May 2015

‘The Gray Man’ by Mark Greaney

Published by Sphere,
9 October, 2014.
ISBN: 978-0-7515-5025-2

I've not heard of this author before, but he can certainly pack a literary punch.  His protagonist, Court Gentry, is a professional hit-man and – as so many of them are, perhaps from necessity – a loner.  Only one man knows who he really is. He possesses the ability to do his job and vanish, leaving no clues at all. 

I enjoyed this book though some of its action sequences stretch the reader's belief almost to breaking point.  For a novel of this kind, the writing style is superior. In this book, he himself is being pursued by international teams of elite hit-squads trying to find and eliminate him, after he kills the brother of the Nigerian President. 

For a top-notch assassin, and despite his tough-guy occupation, and superhuman Gentry is much like your man on the street.  Since he suffers from vertigo, he is afraid of high places, and seems to have a weak bladder since he takes regular toilet breaks. On the other hand, his talent for withstanding an enormous amount of personal injury while continuing to take on or elude those who are out to get him transform him into a super-hero.
Reviewer: Susan Moody

Mark Greaney  was born in Memphis. He is an American novelist, best known as Tom Clancy's collaborator on his final three books, and for continuing the Jack Ryan character and "Tom Clancy Universe" following Clancy's passing. He has a degree in International Relations and Political Science.  In his research for The Gray Man novels he has travelled to more than fifteen countries, visited the Pentagon and many Washington, D.C. Intelligence agencies, and trained alongside military and law enforcement in the use of firearms, battlefield medicine, and close-range combative tactics. Marks books are published in several languages and are available in paperback, ebook and audiobooks. A feature film adaptation of The Gray Man is in development by Columbia Pictures. Mark lives in Memphis, Tennessee

Susan Moody was born and brought up in Oxford.  She has published over 30 crime and suspense novels, including the Penny Wanawake series and the Cassandra Swann bridge series.  She is a past Chairman of the British Crime Writers' Association, a member of the Detection Club, a past Writer-in-Residence at the University of Tasmania and a past President of the International Association of Crime Writers.  She divides her time between south-west France and south-east Kent.   Nominated for the CWA short story award.  Nominated for the RNA's award. 

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