Putin’s Gambit: A Novel
Lou Dobbs’s and James O. Born’s new political thriller, Putin’s Gambit tells the story of a Marine veteran named Derek Walsh who tries to adjust back to civilian life after a tour of duty in Afghanistan. He works at a Wall Street firm handling money transfers. One day, however, an illegal $200 million money transfer is made from Walsh’s computer. Suddenly, Walsh finds himself hunted by the FBI as well as Russian assassins sent at the behest of the Kremlin which, in collusion with ISIS, initiated this transfer so Russia could invade Estonia. By being behind this money transfer as well as several terrorist attacks on US soil, Putin hoped that he could weaken the United States so it wouldn’t get in the way of his Napoleonic ambitions. However, Walsh and his team, which includes a CIA analyst, are hot on Russia’s tail, and only he can stop this conspiracy and keep the region stable.
While the book has lots of run-and-gun action and is quite good on character development, I didn’t find the plot to be very believable. I just found it absurd that the Russian government would be working with the Islamic State to bring the United States to its knees. Nevertheless, I still found Putin’s Gambit to be quite enjoyable. What I also found interesting is that besides Putin, many of the characters in the book are very real, such as Boris Berezovsky, an oligarch who had a falling out with Putin, defected to the West, and was ultimately found dead in his London flat.
Overall, I would recommend Putin’s Gambit to anybody who enjoys a good political and international thriller.
Lou Dobbs • James O. Born