Review of Last Instructions by Nir Hezroni

Published by Point Blank in 2018     ISBN: 978-1-78607-386-0 (PB)

 This is a sequel to the author’s first thriller, Three Envelopes, featuring Mossad secret service operatives, although it is equally enjoyable as a stand-alone. In the latest novel, ably translated from Hebrew by Steven Cohen, Mossad is on the hunt for its former agent 10483, now a disgruntled, vengeful psychopath who’s trying to extinguish the organization of which he was once a part.  But it’s not only Mossad who’s on his trail but also two separate independent units  all competing in a race against time, and a race for glory, to snuff out and put an end to the ex agent’s evil genius.   10483’s mind and behaviour were rewired and messed with in programming experiments   (called “transformations”) while he was with Mossad.  It’s now his twisted, zealous mission to exact retribution by seeking out and assembling a hidden nuclear warhead that he’ll convey to and detonate at the CIA’s Langley HQ.  His story is narrated in the first person that makes it all the more immediate and urgent and gets the reader into his thinking processes as to the reasons for his wanting to settle scores. Indeed, one can’t help feeling a sneaking sympathy for him given how he was treated and what he was subjected to.   The author has extensive experience of hands on military intelligence and this is  interwoven  and makes for interesting, albeit sometimes confusing,  reading.  The plotting is intelligent and well structured; all major characters are given their fair share of telling their version of this dark, complex story and the  climax is thrillingly played out in Tel Aviv.  However, some readers might well  feel that it strains credibility  that a crack outfit like Mossad, with all the means at its disposal,  takes so long to track and take down 10483.

Reviewer: Serena Fairfax






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