I thoroughly enjoyed this classic suspense novel. The action was well-paced and the characters were fully developed. I enjoyed every twist and turn in the plot and found the book to be great, even though I had seen the movie version. The reader kept me enthralled and did a wonderful job voicing the characters. I'd highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a good suspense novel.
The story was a little slow in the beginning as the author set the stage. However once it got going it was a great read and hard to put down.
PLOT: early 1960s plot to kill DE Gaulle.
After several "failed" plots to kill French President Charles De Gaulle...the OAS hire an unknown killer with the name of the "Jackal"......This is entertaining and is different than the movie plot. "Jackal" is skillful and knows every person in every country who can aid his plans for killing....from the gunsmith who can build him a special "gun" ....and he travels to Italy to get several new forged identity papers. AS he carefully plots his skills he is soon pursued by French Detective Lebel who soon has some clues to the hired killer from clues from a kidnapped OAS man. A blonde Englishman is soon being hunted in the UK and abroad. With clues to his "Alexander Duggan".Id........but the Jackal is already on to ID #2...and headed to France from Italy. this is fun and interesting complete with a sexy spy who come mistress of an old man close to De Gaulle to keep tabs on him. This is first rate and keeps you absorbed to the intrigue and very plausible crime. his excellent methods of truly getting close enough to kill is first rate........ I give this 5 STARS all for the way for excellent plot, reader and story that is entertaining even 50 years later.
my ipod and audible make the daily 10 mile walks a "breeze"....
somewhere, sometime...I remember someone telling me that the book couldn't be published until after the death of de Gaulle....because it would have been so reasonable for this to happen....one of the best books of its type...I read the paper version years ago....and after recently listening to "The Cobra"...decided to listen again to the "Jackal"...and I'm glad I did....even knowing the outcome and all the plot...it kept me on the edge of my seat....
Listening while I run.
This is a great listen. I like the perspectives from both sides of the story. The author takes a complex story and weaves it together brilliantly. Nice touches of humor along the way. Simon Prebble is a perfect choice and keeps the story moving. The bits of history are an added bonus.
I like books that have interesting characters and easy to follow plots. For example, Cormoran Strike, is a great character for me.
I had read this book 40 years ago when it first came out and loved it then. Except for the basic story, I had forgotten most of the detail of the book. Listening to this book was a great experience and, as always with a great reader, better than the written text. It's hard to imagine that the author wrote this book in 35 days. In these days, it seems that author's do years of research so that they can accurately document the detail in the novel. When I think about it, who cares whether the gun used is a P-24 semi-automatic rifle with a 10mm short stroked bored and blah, blah blah. I guess this is to satisfy readers of "Rifle Today" magazine. This story was so realistic and so engaging that the specifics of the gunnery were show to be irrelevant. There were several plot holes that I found annoying. For example, having the mistress of the Minister of Air Force in position to relay information seemed contrived. Forsyth needed this desperately to keep the Jackal one step ahead so I understand this need. The second gripe is the negative attitude of the Council when Lebel couldn't find this unknown assassin in three days. This was really hard to accept. This book reminded me of Martin Booth’s 1990 novel A Very Private Gentleman. I could easily see the Jackal as the protagonist in this book. I made me wish that George Clooney had played the Jackal instead of Bruce Willis in the movie remake. Of course, Clooney would not have gone along with the ridiculous plot rewrite. Why mess with a great story? The ending of this book was so fantastic that it deserves to be remade. Was George Smiley of John LeCarre fame the basis for Lebel?
I enjoyed the succinct plot and the way it is delivered. I would recommend this book to any who wish an extremely accurate portrayal of events from the not so distant past.
Tangential, eclectic, avid listener... favorite book is the one currently in ear.
This was a daily special I picked up because of the familiar name... not knowing anything about French history, Charles de Gaulle, Frederick Forsyth or the movie... and I didn't take time to read the reviews.
I tried to read the book several times and got lost in the first chapter... this time I finally made it to the second chapter where the story becomes interesting and I couldn't stop. While reading I began to wonder if I was reading a very well researched historical crime or fiction, but refused to check it out on Wikipedia until I finished the book. I think my lack of knowledge made the book better because I didn't know how it was going to end. That said, the book might be a little dated but it grew on me and I'm glad I read it. Certainly the movie couldn't begin to cover the complicated plot.
A bit of sex and some violence, but then the Jackal is a paid assassin... I wasn't sure who I was hoping would come out on top, the brilliant assassin or the quiet and determined policeman.