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Requiem for an Assassin

Barry Eisler
In Print
Putnam (2007)

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This entry created 15 October 2012. Last revised on 5 September 2016.

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Requiem for an Assassin

A Novel

Rating: gold star gold star gold star gold star gold star no star no star no star no star no star (5.00)

356 pages.

Sequel to Last Assassin.

After the last book in the series, you might have thought that every loose end in the John Rain series had been wrapped up. Unfortunately, there's one more loose end...

Jim Hilger first appeared in Rain Storm as the CIA agent involved in a weapons deal with terrorists. By the time of Killing Rain, Hilger has gone freelance, running his own CIA-for-hire. Although Rain decimated Hilger's network in the previous novel, the rogue agent lived to fight another day - but what is he up to, and why does this "superpatriot" always seem on the brink of delivering dangerous weapons to terrorists?

As the novel begins, Hilger needs several targets eliminated without questions being raised - so he wants John Rain, specialist in "natural causes" assassinations, to do the jobs. Rain, however, has gone underground... so Hilger kidnaps one of Rain's former partners, in order to force Rain to reveal himself and take on the jobs.

After the upheavals of the previous novel, Rain has settled down in Paris with Mossad agent Delilah, and has been consciously trying to let go of "the iceman," which he thinks of as the "killer" side of his personality. Only now, Rain will need the iceman in order to outwit Hilger and rescue his friend.

This novel brings back many characters from previous novels - Dox, the Marine assassin; Kanezaki, a CIA officer; and brief appearances by Delilah (and some of her Mossad colleagues) and even Midori.

The plot is in the format of "perform three assassinations, and your friend goes free" - except that everyone knows Hilger will never let anyone go free, that Hilger will try to kill Rain before all is done, and are there really three missions, or maybe just two and then a trap? And how can Rain locate and rescue the hostage while busy assassinating targets around the globe?

This is another interesting novel in the John Rain series, with a nice balance of assassination missions versus gunfights. Unfortunately, this one didn't draw me in as other novels in the series have. The entire "John Rain wrestling with his inner iceman" subplot seemed overdone to me.

Even so, this lesser novel in a great series is still better than a lot of other novels out there. (Note the usual warnings about violence and sex for this series.) None of the fights seemed suitable for tabletop gaming.

Reviewed by Personal logo Editor in Chief Bill The Editor of TMP Fezian.