A half-starved young Russian man in a long black overcoat is smuggled into Hamburg at dead of night. He has an improbable amount of cash secreted in a purse round his neck. He is a devout Muslim. Or is he? He says his name is Issa. Annabel, an idealistic young German civil rights lawyer, determines to save Issa from deportation….
Annabel, an idealistic young German civil rights lawyer, determines to save Issa from deportation. Soon her client’s survival becomes more important to her than her own career. In pursuit of Issa’s mysterious past, she confronts the incongruous Tommy Brue, the sixty-year-old scion of Brue Frères, a failing British bank based in Hamburg.
And they have some how set off a chain of events implicating intelligence agencies from three countries.
A further good reason to ignore the boy was the classical music that the station authorities boom at full blast over this section of the concourse from a battery of well-aimed loudspeakers. Its purpose, far from spreading feelings of peace and well-being among its listeners, is to send them packing.
Despite these impediments the skinny boy's face imprinted itself on Melik's consciousness and for a fleeting moment he felt embarrassed by his own happiness. Why on earth should he? Something splendid had just occurred, and he couldn't wait to phone his sister and tell her that their mother, Leyla, after six months of tending her dying husband, and a year of mourning her heart out for him, was bubbling over with pleasure at the prospect of attending her daughter's wedding, and fussing about what to wear, and whether the dowry was big enough, and the groom as handsome as everybody, including Melik's sister, said he was.
So why shouldn't Melik chatter along with his own mother? Which he did, enthusiastically, all the way home. It was the skinny boy's stillness, he decided later. Those lines of age in a face as young as mine. His look of winter on a lovely spring day.
Review: This book seems to be a bit predictable at few places along the course of reading, but yet it engages you enough to keep reading. Each of the character is as complex as any human and as simple as the idea they live with. The end leaves you shocked. Its nothing that you would have expected and the last that you would have imagined. Issa , his lawyer Annabel, banker Brue are all worthy of being loved and empathized with but it was a completely another character that I felt so sad for. As a back cover states, this is "a first-class novel about the most pressing moral and political concerns of our time." No argument here.Pick it and you are in for a treat of completely new style of thriller.
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Scribner (October 7, 2008)
Price : 175 @ flipkart