LIFESTYLE | Child 44 Review

While I was browsing my local British Heart Foundation I bought Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith. the title of this book caught my eye for some reason and when I read the back I decided to get it despite it not being my usual thing (it's from an author I hadn't read or heard of and it's not been made into a film I've seen before which are my usual criteria when choosing a book!) But it's set in Russia in 1953, a time period I'm quite interested in after studying it at school.

Child 44 Book Review

Our main main is Leo Demidov, a Secret Service officer for the Russian government who suddenly finds his life completely changed when he discovers there is a murderer killing children for seemingly no reason in a State where crime officially doesn't exist. I'm not usually one for thrillers or murder mysteries but I found this, well, thrilling! It's unusual for me to read a book in a few days, especially one that's 500-odd pages, but I just couldn't put it down...it was one of those ones where you don't even wanna go out because you just want to carry on reading. There were twists I didn't see coming and I loved how Leo's character changes and that we get to discover what Raisa (his wife) is really like alongside Leo. I didn't predict anything that was going to happen, even though looking back now I can see some clues that other people will probably be able to piece together. I'm probably just super thick haha. I think some people may find the dialogue a little bland but maybe this is the author's attempt at showing how people were afraid to show their true emotions at the time? 

As a bit of a history geek I think it captured the mood of Russia at the time very well...the fear and the paranoia. It's horrible that the murders were based true events (you can read it up here if you're interested although if you're going to read this book then don't look it up!) I like that Smith has gone to great lengths to be historically accurate when it comes to life in Russia at the time without taking away the excitement of the thriller. 

It's an action packed book so obviously there are times when it's not very realistic but for the most part I found it quite believable. However when he finds the killer I just thought 'Really?' I understand the explanation for the murders but just thought it was weak if that makes sense, I was just thinking how it wouldn't happen and that someone wouldn't go that far. And I found the ending almost Disney-fied, for a grim book it just felt like it didn't fit in. I get a lot of readers would be really happy with this ending though, maybe I'm just some kind of mean person haha! But this is the first book in a trilogy, I really want to read the others in the series. There's a film out now too which has totally flopped at the box office but I still want to see it because Tom Hardy. 

Have you read this book before? Any Russian history/Tom Hardy fans out there? Will you be seeing the film?



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25 comments:

  1. I think charity shop finds are the best sometimes! I've never heard of this book or the author either and it's not usually something I would pick up, but as they say, don't judge a book by it's cover ;) xxx

    Sam | Samantha Betteridge

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  2. I love thrillers! I'm jealous of all your charity shop book finds, ours are full of rubbish! I heard the film flopped, I think I'd rather read the book even though the ending doesn't sound the best...


    Tara x

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  3. Ooooo..this sounds pretty awesome! I used to read murder-mysteries when I was younger, but more like the Agatha Christie-type ones. And OMG! Tom Hardy?!?! I'm so there.

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  4. I recently bought this book too as the title drew me in! I am a fan of crime thriller fiction though so it was one I looked forward to reading. I literally finished it the other day and, like you, I didn't see some of the twists coming and i was like ahh that's clever -- but also wasn't satisfied behind the killers motive at the end! I think there should have been more to it, his past just didn't seem enough to make somebody do the things he did. I will probably watch the film, but the trailer didn't look that great to me and I don't think the film will be able to capture the true changes Leo makes throughout the book, but we'll see, because yum Tom Hardy! haha

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  5. but then again, thinking of what the killer did go through... maybe it was enough to turn someone into a monster like him! It's probably his motive I'm more unhappy with, like you said it's a bit weak..

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  6. Omg, I want to read it now - especially because it's set in the part of the world where i am from ;) xx

    Edita

    www.pret-a-reporter.co.uk

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  7. My boyfriend is so looking forward for this movie just because of Tom Hardy. I think he will enjoy reading this book as well. Xx

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  8. I've heard of this book but have never read it.

    Lizzie Dripping

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  9. I looked at this on the kindle store yesterday and was debating whether to pick it up - totally going to get it now, it sounds like my kind of thing! xx

    Jasmin Charlotte

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  10. This sounds like such a page turner. I have so many books on my to be read list but I'm very tempted to add this to it! xx

    Ioanna | Hearting.co.uk

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  11. I studied Russian history at college :) I wasn't aware that this was a film at all either! I really do enjoy thrillers and I've just finished I Am Pilgrim which was pretty exciting! xxx

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  12. I will be seeing the film, although probably on download rather than at the cinema, and now I really want to read the book too. I usually watch a film first, then read the book, and watch the film again and pull it apart in my head. ;) xx

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  13. You can find some real gems for bargain prices, plus it's all for a good cause! I've been trying to branch out into different genres lately, sometimes it pays off sometimes it doesn't but to me a charity shop buy is never a waste of money :) x

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  14. I think there's someone rich who must donate to them all the time, there's always nearly brand new copies of recent releases! I'm going to see the film tomorrow, if anything is going to help me recover from surgery it's Tom Hardy's face haha x

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  15. I would love to read some Agatha Christie books, I used to love the TV adaptations when I was little haha x

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  16. It sounded awful what they put up with when they were younger but I think the author should have maybe expanded on that if that's the reason he turned into a monster! I feel like I have so many questions I want to ask the author! I'm still going to see the film, I'm in pain after surgery and Tom Hardy will help that haha!

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  17. I think the film is actually banned in Russia and other countries! It's made me more intrigued to see it now :) x

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  18. It's definitely worth trying out if you like thrillers/murder mysteries :) x

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  19. That's exactly what I was doing haha! Glad I was too dumb to pick up on it, would've ruined the book for me otherwise x

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  20. If you like thrillers/murder mysteries it's so good! x

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  21. My to-read list is never ending too! x

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  22. I saw that on your Goodreads! I really want to read that now, it looks so good x

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  23. You'll be watching again for Tom Hardy too, obvs ;) x

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