Book 10, in the Gabriel Allon series
For those who are thriller addicts, Mr. Silva has to be one of the main suppliers; he is at the top of his game when it comes to satisfying the needs of avid readers and their quest for endless action and suspense. “The Rembrandt Affair” is a fascinating fiction, a blend of international espionage, art theft and murder that is well-written, fast-paced and populated with a remarkable cast of characters. Gabriel Allon, the protagonist, is an accomplished art restorer and a skilled Israeli spy when called upon, a hero for all seasons with a stellar success rate.
The plot opens with Gabriel and his wife Chiara enjoying a little down time in the scenic coastal town of Glastonbury. They are recovering from the traumatic aftereffects of their heroic rescue from the murderous hands of a Russian oligarch (the previous novel “The Defector”). When Gabriel learns an art restorer has been found murdered and a priceless painting by Rembrandt is missing, he is unable to stand by and do nothing. He soon finds himself back into the tick of thing and in full investigative mode with the help of his trusted cohorts. This latest caper, tense at times, unravels at a fast and suspenseful pace with many twists and turns right through to the climactic ending.
The storyline is sad, very emotional and heart wrenching at times but this meaty novel is very smartly written and engaging. The sub-plots are also very interesting on their own; they mirror some of the information that sufficed about the role Swiss banks and the Catholic Church played during WW11 and the looting of art by the Nazi elite.
I was so into this novel I burned the midnight oil to the last page.