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Location: Brooklyn, NY, United States

30 May 2012

The Rook

The Rook by Daniel O'Malley is a novel about a secret intelligence service in Britain, the Checquy Group. It is like the Men in Black movies met author Jasper Fforde - pure brilliance.

The book opens with a letter that begins, "Dear You, The body you are wearing used to be mine..." The woman reading the letter found it in her jacket pocket after she came to in a park surrounded by a ring of dead people all wearing latex gloves. The letter goes on to tell her how to cover her tracks and find her wait to safety.

Now Myfanwy (rhymes with Tiffany) Thomas - or the woman currently in her body - has a decision to make. Based on the information in the letter, written by Thomas, she can study fast and take over Myfanwy's life or she can run.

If she takes over Myfanwy's life and job she will be in for a surprise - she will be working as a Rook in the Checquy Group. But within a group of people, many of whom have supernatural powers of some kind, all of whom are taught to look for the out of the ordinary - how will she pull off becoming someone who has been part of the group all of her life - using just a few letters and a binder of information on the Checquy?

O'Malley has created an espionage thriller with a twist. It has the creativity of a Jasper Fforde book and is brilliantly crafted and written. It will suck reader in and hold their attention until long after the last page. It is not clear if there will be a sequel, but if there is I will be first in line to read it!

O'Malley, Daniel. (2012). The Rook. New York: Little, Brown and Company.

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