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Child 44

by Tom Rob Smith
read by Dennis Boutsikaris

      Child 44 is more than an thriller - it is a chiller. It is a tale of murder, indifference, passion and danger, set in the Soviet Union. The Soviet Union fancied itself a "utopian society, perfect, without the crime levels of the west." However they wished to cover up crime, it still existed.

No one knew it any better than Leo Dimintov. Though the new country was supposed to be a paradise for workers, the reality fell far short. Corruption ran rampant among the leadership so the worker's life was even harder than before. Leo held a high position in the MBG, the agency charged with keeping corruption in check, imprisoning or executing the offenders and keeping the whole mess out of the news. The public would not appreciate knowing their government and society was less than perfect. However Leo was aware they already knew.

When one of Leo's underlings asked Leo to investigate the murder of his son, Leo was astonished at the idea that a child could be murdered. He was told to convince the boy's parents that the four-year-old had died in a tragic accident. But Leo wondered if it could have been murder. After all he'd been found next to a railroad track. Reports were that he'd had his mouth stuffed with dirt and his stomach cut out. Leo hadn't seen it himself and the woman who said she saw a man leading the boy across the track was too afraid to tell anything. Leo was a forced to call the death an accident.

Things didn't add up for Leo. At last he began his investigation. Could he overcome the adversity the investigation caused, to stop a killer who'd so far killed more than fifty victims? Save for the foul language, it's a well written story with a lot of twists and turns to spice up the plot. Authors improve with experience. If this is Tom Rob Smith's debut, I can hardly wait to read his work ten years from now.

Reviews of other titles in this Trilogy

Child 44 [audio] [book]
Secret Speech [audio] [book]
Agent 6 [audio] [review]

The Book

Hachette Audio
April 29, 2008
Audio book / CD / Unabridged
160024159X / 978-1600241598
Historical Suspense
More at
NOTE: Violence and profanity

The Reviewer

Jo Rogers
Reviewed 2008
© 2008