One of the most celebrated thrillers ever written, The Day of the Jackal is the electrifying story of an anonymous Englishman who in, the spring of 1963, was hired by Colonel Marc Rodin, operations chief of the O.A.S., to assassinate General de Gaulle.
France was infuriated by Charles de Gaulle's withdrawal from Algeria, and there were six known attempts to assassinate the general that failed. This novel dramatizes the seventh, mostly deadly attempt, involving a professional killer for hire who would be unknown to the French Police. His code name was Jackal, his price half a million dollars, and his demand total secrecy, even from his employers.
Step by painstaking step, we follow the Jackal in his meticulous planning, from the fashioning of a specially made rifle to the devising of his approach to the time and the place where the general is to meet the Jackal's bullet. The only obstacle in his path is a small, diffident, rumpled policeman, who happens to be considered by his boss the best detective in France: Deputy Commissaire Claude Lebel.
©1971 Frederick Forsyth; (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
"A masterpiece tour de force of crisp, sharp, suspenseful writing." (Wall Street Journal)
"Compelling, utterly enthralling....Some of the tensest thriller writing I can remember reading." (Sunday Express, London)
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.
I love this book and re-read it every few years. It was one of the first audible titles I bought but the narrator was all wrong (so very slow and monotone). I was so happy to see a new narrator that I bought the book again. Simon Prebble is a much better fit for the story and does a lovely job.
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 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?
Really, it's amazing how well this holds up from 40 years ago (pub 1971 or so). Set in 1963, it's a straight-forward narrative, the step-by-step tale of how the Jackal planned the assassination of Charles de Gaulle and how he was stopped by a police officer who just wouldn't give up and who checked everything. Very good story for knitting.
Forsyth is a great author. The Day of the Jackal has you on the edge of your seat throughout. I listen to books in my car. I would find myself pulling into a parking lot and unable to get out until I found out what happened next ... and next. The reader, Simon Prebble, is very good too. Good enough that, when Audible recommended The Irregulars, I gave it a try when I saw that he read that one too. Highly recommend The Day of the Jackal.
someone who knows French? or whatever country that was.
It was too difficult to follow...when there are foreign sounding names and places, those are hard to remember. In print, you can go back and review easily, on audible...not possible. I gave up....had no idea what was happening.
Say something about yourself!
I really enjoyed this novel. Well read, with great attention to the characters, I was pulled into the story from the beginning. Definitely recommend it!
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