Title: The Fourth Protocol
Author: Frederick Forsyth
Publisher: Cornerstone Digital
Website: Cornerstone Digital
Length: 450 pages
Synopsis: A crack Soviet agent, placed under cover in a quiet English country town, begins to assemble a jigsaw of devastation. MI5 investigator John Preston, working against the most urgent of deadlines, leads an operation to prevent the act of murderous destruction aimed at tumbling Britain into revolution.
Plan Aurora, hatched in a remote dacha in the forest outside Moscow and initiated with relentless brilliance and skill, is a plan within a plan that, in its spine-chilling ingenuity, breaches the ultra-secret Fourth Protocol and turns the fears that shaped it into a living nightmare.
Written in style of its time, The Fourth Protocol has a very strong plot led "tell" rather than a "show" style. While the settings are well described, there is little development of the characters - they are merely tools to drive the plot and the dialogue (both as speech and as internal dialogue) is minimal. Nevertheless, the plot did keep me very engaged and turning the pages, although the end was predictable and unremarkable. I have heard it said that in such books it is not the end that is the key, but the journey by which you get there, and on that basis there is no doubt that Forsyth is a master story teller.
What others thought at the time of writing
Amazon.co.uk; 104 reviews, of which 94% were 3* or more, giving an average of 4.4*
Amazon.com; 97 review, of which 95% were 3* or more, giving an average of 4.2*
Goodreads.com; 28,853 ratings (273 reviews), with 98% of 3* or more, giving an average of 4.0*
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