A review of ‘I Am Pilgrim’ by Terry Hayes

I Am Pilgrim‘I Am Pilgrim’, the debut novel from Terry Hayes, takes us inside the most secret of secret intelligence agencies, following an attempt to locate the source of an imminent terrorist attack.

Having left the secret service, all the narrator wants to do is to be left alone to live out his life free from retaliation or revenge. But having been drawn back into the world by a particularly persistent pursuer, he finds himself at a seemingly typical crime scene in a New York motel. He soon realises that he’s up against a killer that has memorised all the tricks in the book (literally!) to evade the authorities. His presence at the crime scene sets into motion a series of events that reaches into the highest echelons of US security services. Soon he is tasked with a mission that carries deadly consequences – to derail a new kind of terrorist threat that has the potential to destroy the United States from inside its own borders. Continue reading

A courtroom thriller

appletreeyard‘Apple Tree Yard’ opens in a courtroom, with our narrator in the dock, although we don’t yet know her crime. To explain how she got there, Yvonne takes us right back to the beginning – to the events that set everything in motion.

Yvonne is 52, married, has two children and is a successful geneticist. She could be any one of us. As she takes pains to point out – her life is ordinary. But the choices she makes over the course of a few short months will take her down a road that Yvonne never thought she would travel.

The direction of the book continually changes as it progresses. Every time we think we can see where the story is leading, something shifts, changing with it our perceptions of characters. The end, when it comes, is a tense and anxious experience, all building up to the one moment that has the potential to change her life forever. Continue reading