THE TOP RICHARD AND JUDY BOOK CLUB PICK FOR SUMMER 2021
'Stunning' Daily Express
Victory is close. Vengeance is closer.
Rudi Graf used to dream of sending a rocket to the moon. Instead, he has helped to create the world's most sophisticated weapon: the V2 ballistic missile, capable of delivering a one-ton warhead at three times the speed of sound.
In a desperate gamble to avoid defeat in the winter of 1944, Hitler orders ten thousand to be built. Graf is tasked with firing these lethal 'vengeance weapons' at London.
Kay Caton-Walsh is an officer in the Women's Auxiliary Air Force who joins a unit of WAAFs on a mission to newly liberated Belgium. Armed with little more than a slide rule and a few equations, Kay and her colleagues will attempt to locate and destroy the launch sites.
As the death toll soars, Graf and Kay fight their grim, invisible war - until one final explosion of violence causes their destinies to collide...
'A riveting read with a corker of a twist' Daily Telegraph
'Supremely readable' Observer
'Delivers one hell of a punch' Express
'Captures the real nature of war. Gripping' Ben MacIntyre
A riveting read . . . with a corker of a twist.
[I]mmersive and engaging.
V2 is a stunning achievement; a gripping page-turner that remains highly thought-provoking.
An immersive thriller set against a tense historical backdrop . . . For all its pace - you will zip through it in no time - the rewards are in the meta-story. But Harris's deceptively effortless prose means you barely notice. The effect is one of total immersion: you can feel the cold, taste the bacon sandwiches and imagine the trolleys squeaking across the floor.
Harris renders the historical detail with his customary verisimilitude.
Harris's books are always supremely readable - he has practically trademarked the term 'master storyteller'.
This is a lively read, as propulsive as the rockets of the title, and it masterfully captures the bleak, jaded atmosphere of the Second World War's death throes.
Robert Harris has always been ingenious at finding ways to write about the Second World War [...] It's highly readable . . . thrillingly tense.
Harris finds the poetry in physics and the soul in engineering. He makes the V2s come to life as vividly as any of his human characters . . . His prose can be wonderfully vivid... Harris has the great gift of readability; there is no living novelist whose books I am likelier to gobble up in one sitting.
[An] astonishingly precise novel... With its tense plot and familiar characters, some readers may anticipate the novel's own parabolic curve. But this means it offers the satisfactions we expect. Spies and informers lurk. Period details are piquant, but not overdone . . . Above all there's suspense . . . V2 will keep you pinned on a compelling trajectory.
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What Robert Harris' character Cicero has to say on the big topics, from love and marriage to money and death, in Dictator, the last book of the Cicero series.