Fleming, James - 'Rising Blood'
This book is the last in a trilogy recounting the adventures of one Charlie Doig, but not having read the previous two books did not reduce my enjoyment of this one as the author fully explains how the story has progressed from the earlier WHITE BLOOD and COLD BLOOD books.
It is the year 1918 in Moscow and Charlie with his Mongolian friend Kobi is the richest man alive in the whole of the country as he owns a barge on the River Volga which has on board the 28 tonnes of the dead Tsar's entire fortune of gold. Charlie wants to keep this out of the hands of Lenin and his communist hench men and he drives the barge upstream to a convenient, memorable location and then sinks it to the bottom of the river. It is the middle of December and Charlie decides he wants to leave Russia and go to America with the diamonds and other fortune he has in his boots and the two men make their way along the Trans-Siberian Railway to the Pacific, and freedom, or so he thinks.
After several adventures they get captured by an important Russian general who has a girlfriend whom Charlie knew many years previously. With her help they get very friendly with a man who commissions Charlie to travel to Nagasaki in Japan to kill his cousin there who is also his business partner. Charlie agrees to carry out the mission and journeys to the country and many interesting and fascinating adventures occur before we reach the conclusion and discover what happens to the gold.
I found the latter part of the book very reminiscent, with the author's detailed descriptions of Japanese culture, to the James Clavell's SHOGUN and similar books. RISING BLOOD is fascinating and as this historic thriller is written by the nephew of the late Ian Fleming, the author the James Bond series, one can see that his impressive writing skills were passed on successfully. A very enjoyable book which I recommend.
Terry Halligan, England
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