x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

The Innocent: A do-or-die dilemma

Like many of his previous outings, David Baldacci's new novel features a jaded, middle-aged government agent facing an impossible decision.

The Innocent
David Baldacci
The Innocent David Baldacci Macmillan Dh82

David Baldacci is one of those thriller writers from whom readers know exactly what to expect and that, perhaps, explains some of his remarkable success. Indeed, The Innocent is no different from many of his previous outings in that the action centres on a jaded hero: a middle-aged government agent who is faced with a do-or-die dilemma.

Assigned by his agency to eliminate a US government employee, Will Robie's plan begins to go awry when he discovers his target is a single mother of two young children.

A brief moment of hesitation on his part is further complicated when his intended victim is taken out by a mysterious sniper instead and whose next bullet is aimed squarely at Robie. Baldacci's hero flees the scene, only to later cross paths with Julie Getty, a teenage tearaway whose parents have also just been murdered.

Not surprisingly, Robie makes it his personal mission to uncover the identities of those out for his blood while ensuring Julie's safety in the process. Not exactly Baldacci at his most brilliant, but it will be enough to satisfy devoted fans.