Synopses & Reviews
In the most ingenious and provocative thriller yet from the acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Jeffery Deaver, a conscience-plagued mobster turned government hitman struggles to find his moral compass amid rampant treachery and betrayal in 1936 Berlin.
Paul Schumann, a German American living in New York City in 1936, is a mobster hitman known as much for his brilliant tactics as for taking only "righteous" assignments. But then Paul gets caught. And the arresting officer offers him a stark choice: prison or covert government service. Paul is asked to pose as a journalist covering the summer Olympics taking place in Berlin. He's to hunt down and kill Reinhard Ernst -- the ruthless architect of Hitler's clandestine rearmament. If successful, Paul will be pardoned and given the financial means to go legit; if he refuses the job, his fate will be Sing Sing and the electric chair.
Paul travels to Germany, takes a room in a boardinghouse near the Tiergarten -- the huge park in central Berlin but also, literally, the "Garden of Beasts" -- and begins his hunt. In classic Deaver fashion, the next forty-eight hours are a feverish cat-and-mouse chase, as Paul stalks Ernst through Berlin while a dogged Berlin police officer and the entire Third Reich apparatus search frantically for the American.
Garden of Beasts is packed with fascinating period detail and features a cast of perfectly realized locals, Olympic athletes and senior Nazi officials -- some real, some fictional. With hairpin plot twists, the reigning "master of ticking-bomb suspense" (People) plumbs the nerve-jangling paranoia of prewar Berlin and steers the story to a breathtaking and wholly unpredictable ending.
In his most provocative "New York Times" bestseller yet, Deaver introduces a German-American hit man who goes deep undercover at the 1936 Olympic Games in Berlin with orders to assassinate Hitler's right-hand man.
About the Author
Jeffery Deaver, a former attorney, is the New York Times bestselling author and originator of the acclaimed detective hero Lincoln Rhyme, featured in nine hit novels. A lifelong fan of Ian Fleming’s James Bond novels, Deaver was honored to be handpicked by Fleming’s estate to carry on the literary tradition, beginning with his #1 international and New York Times bestseller Carte Blanche. His novel, XO, features special agent Kathryn Dance, who first appeared alongside Lincoln Rhyme in The Sleeping Doll and whose popularity inspired Roadside Crosses, first in the series. A former folksinger, Deaver penned songs featured in XO, which are downloadable from his website. His many awards include the 2009 Best Novel of the Year award from the International Thriller Writers organization for his stand-alone novel The Bodies Left Behind. He’s been nominated for seven Edgar Awards, an Anthony Award, and a Gumshoe Award, and was short-listed for the ITV3 Crime Thriller Award for Best International Author. He is a three-time recipient of the Ellery Queen Readers Award for Best Short Story of the Year, and a winner of the British Thumping Good Read Award. He has also won a Steel Dagger for best thriller of the year (Garden of Beasts) and a Short Story Dagger from the British Crime Writers’ Association. Visit the author on Facebook or go to JefferyDeaver.com.