What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, stand a little taller. Doesn’t mean I’m lonely when I’m alone.. What doesn’t kill you makes a fighter, footsteps even lighter…
I LOVE ITUNES RIGHT NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Child 44 is the first of a three-part modern crime-thriller fiction written by Tom Rob Smith.
Set in 1953, the story revolves around Moscow and its surrounding villages. It describes a bleak setting with the population of Russia being convinced to believe that its Government State is always right: That there is no such thing as crime. Every action, punishment, and death ordered by the State is not torture, murder, or indoctrination; but is in fact for the greater good - to create a perfect society - at all costs.
The Government is a twisted form of Stalin’s post-prime time. This is evident in a variant of Stalin’s well-known aphorism: “Trust but check becomes “Check on those we trust” in the novel and is drilled into every citizen. It is also mandatory that the country’s needs are placed before your families and friends. If you are caught disobeying, you will be viciously punished, in an effort to protect the state and deter similar uprisings by showing everyone the consequences.
The chapters are marked with dates and provide a 3rd person perspective which follows the progression of the protagonist Leo Demidov; an ambitious secret police officer working for the MGB. A truly loyal and dedicated individual, Leo is proud to finish the war as a soldier and enter the state’s police force as a detective and squad leader.
However, Leo begins to doubt the authenticity of the state’s brutal rules and begins to overthink. He has to be careful and extra vigilant, lest he wants to attract attention to himself and put his wife in danger. The State is always watching everybody and it is only when Leo works on a case linked to the death of his friend’s son, that he commits the worst crime imaginable: Doubting the State’s system.
Disbelief, hesitation and uncertainty of any of the State’s regulation would brand you as a traitor to the country, and you will be sent to endure the most powerful punishment available (usually execution of you, your family and extended family). Traitors are those who believe in crime, protect their family and friends foremost and lastly but not limited to; free thoughts and action. Anything that contradicts the State’s belief, however morally wrong, has the potential to bring down power and start an uprising. Of course there are those whom secretly wish for freedom; for democracy, for freedom of speech and movement. But you would be shot on-sight simply by talking to a foreigner or possessing too much food and water.
Leo performs badly in an investigation and is under scrutiny for his next one. There are seven targets that are on suspicion of talking with foreigners. Each team receives an envelope detailing their next target. Leo opens his envelope to find pictures of his next mark and studies the patterns and behaviour of the character. It was his wife: Raisa.
Whether or not it was a lesson to him for virtually letting a suspect get away, that didn’t matter anymore. If he denounced his wife, his family would be fine. If he protected her innocence, they would all die.
In an attempt to protect the wife he loves, he rejects the state’s accusation on his wife and narrowly escapes execution. Instead, the entire family is relocated into the poor suburbs, stripped of their Government-grants of exotic food and clothing, and Leo and Raisa is forced to move into a small town beyond the outskirts of Moscow stripped of his high ranking authority.
After finding out that Leo once suspected her of sleeping with someone, Raisa confesses that she never loved Leo, and that she only accepted his marriage proposal because he was an officer in the State Security. She explains she was frightened that if she said no he would have her killed due to the embarrassment and anger. However, soon after, they come to realise that they have to depend on each other to survive through the slum they were forced to work in and that another serial killer is on the loose. The new Major General of the town hears of Leo and “unofficially” places him back as an officer of the State… he soon realises that his friend was right - there is serial murderer on the loose - twith the same signatures, and the same one that killed his colleague’s son. But what was he doing all the way out here?
AHH SHUCKS WELL GUYS THIS BOOK IS SO GOOD. I’m only on page 180 or something. There’s still another 300 to go SO GO BUY IT