Top positive review
2 people found this helpful
on 2 March 2017
It's always a pleasure to discover an author I enjoy. I had not previously read anything by Charles Cumming, but very much liked 'A Foreign Country', Cumming's first novel about recently disgraced MI6 agent Thomas Kell. Kell has been dismissed from a relatively senior position in the agency following a incident in Afghanistan, when a suspect's human rights were abused by CIA operatives. However, he is brought back on a temporary, freelance basis when the new head of MI6, Amelia Levene disappears whilst on holiday in France.
'A Foreign Country' is well-written and exciting. Although the plot is relatively straightforward, with few twists and turns, Cumming is excellent at maintaining a high pace throughout, and then accelerating the action towards the end. The main characters are well-drawn and the minor characters aren't stereotypes. Kell himself is an interesting character - he is clearly wedded to his job, which he is very good at, but also suffers doubts about the extent to which this requires deceit, and the effect of this on his personal relationships.
I thoroughly enjoyed this excellent book and look forward to reading the next two in the Thomas Kell series.