Mary Chrapliwy's Reviews > The Innocent

The Innocent by David Baldacci
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's review
Jun 22, 2012

really liked it
bookshelves: netgalley-books
Read from June 19 to 23, 2012

Will Robie is a government assassin able to calculate, move, and execute his target without much remorse. Then he gets a case that isn't off in a remote country somewhere, but in his own. He is ordered to kill a US citizen. He's told she has ties to terrorism and stalks and prepares to kill his target. When faced with the reality of the situation, he knows something isn't right and decides to ignore his orders and spare the woman and the little boy who sleeps beside her. Unfortunately, a fail safe has been put in place and a sniper takes control out of his hands and kills the woman and then turns his long range sniper rifer on Robie himself. Thus begins a thriller where Robie comes upon a teenager also running for her life and an FBI agent who just can't leave well enough alone. No spoilers here - this is just how the story begins.

Told mostly from Will Robie's point of view the story is about an unquestioning cold-hearted killer. He never gets involved with anyone, living a solitary existence. Even his apartment has no personality, very few personal effects, just a generic space as generic as he is. However, with good story telling, the hero begins to change and grow. That proved just as interesting as the threat that he investigates while running from it.

At first I wasn't fond of Robie. The prose was as wooden as he was. As the story progressed, Baldacci was able to make me care about what happened to Will, while not making the mistake of changing a killer suddenly to a puppy dog. By the end of the story I found myself wishing for more Will Robie. I also became interested in reading more of Baldacci's work.
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