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Posted January 29, 2012
This is an intelligent thriller about a Russian oligarch thought to be involved in nefarious dealings, and his main man who wants out. Lives are in peril as a western investigator who lost a friend to murder in the new Russia tries to help. The book is exciting without having bombs blasting and car chases. Things trip up however when the action moves to Berlin. Predictably a problem arises there and its resolution does not seem as smart as the book had appeared to be until now. So, off to a good start. If you like the resolution, then the book might get five stars from you.
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Posted March 13, 2012
A Thrilling Read for Fans of International Intrigue
For a first book, Chris Morgan Jones writes like a seasoned professional. He weaves a story that draws the reader into the world of money laundering and the iron fists that rule.
Konstantin Malin is a key player with the Ministry of Natural Resources in Russia controlling half of the oil industry. He is a diabolical and ruthless man who controls his underlings like puppets on a string, praising them for a job well done or mercilessly punishing them for not living up to his expectations. Richard Lock is a money launderer working for Malin selling companies to investors by making promises that are not met.
Aristotle Tourna bought a company with promised licenses for oil and gas exploration. When the deal was complete, Tourna found the licenses had been transferred to another company. Tourna was enraged by this and hires Ikerru, an international corporate intelligence firm to bring down Malin. Benjamin Webster is the investigator who is assigned to gather intelligence on Malin’s empire inevitably zeroing in on Lock as a key player.
As Webster pursues leads talking to people connected to Malin and his shady dealings, his contacts begin dying. Police are ruling the deaths as suicides but Webster isn’t convinced. Webster and Lock finally connect and come to a meeting of the minds; it’s time for Lock to get out before he dies. But Lock doesn’t know whom he can trust, if anyone at all.
Chris Morgan Jones writes from knowledge. He has worked advising Middle Eastern governments, Russian oligarchs, banking and mining companies in Africa. Although this is his first novel, he proves a talent for writing that will have the reader turning pages as fast as they can. I highly recommend this read for fans of international intrigue and spy thrillers.
Reviewed by Jodi Hanson for Suspense Magazine
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Posted March 3, 2012
Who Holds the Strings of Power?
The Silent Oligarch by Chris Morgan Jones is a fictional book about those in the shadows which hold the strings of power.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
English lawyer Richard Lock owns a company, but the Russian oligarch Konstatin Malin owns Lock. The company is a front to launder money in a complex web which enables Malin to control the Russian oil industry.
When a competitor tries to destroy Malin, Lock finds himself stuck in the middle. For the first time in his life Lock is being pushed to the edge in a very dangerous game with sinister people who control it.
1: government by the few
2: a government in which a small group exercises control especially for corrupt and selfish purposes; also : a group exercising such control
3: an organization under oligarchic control
The Silent Oligarch by Chris Morgan Jones is an interesting book filled with great detail about London, Moscow and Berlin as well as the lifestyle of rich Russians. The story is filled with interesting atmospheric nuances about the new Russia.
The book is somewhat complex, reading it was like walking through a maze and the reader had to pay attention. Jones writes like an insider, not only in the complex details of shell companies but also into the mindset of those who control them and those who are being controlled. The reader can feel the boss’ is calm, collected, reserved yet menacing demeanor while being able to relate to the genuine panic of others.
What I liked about this book is that the bad guy, Konstatin Malin, is a very sinister fellow and even though he doesn’t have a big role in the book, his presence is certainly felt on almost every page. The novel moves forward at a decent pace and seemed, at least to me, very close to reality.
There are no big battles, heroic acts or moral absolutes. The opposite actually, just like in real life there are plenty of moral ambiguity for every character in this story while keeping the actual violence to a minimum.
While the book is about Russia, once can draw parallels to the US when it comes to oligarchy. I certainly don’t think it’s as bad as it is, or was, there but we can all see who pulls the purse strings in Congress (pizza is a vegetable?).
Posted February 14, 2012
A fast paced novel that left me wanting more
I don't normally read thrillers, preferring lighter mysteries, but the premise of this book intrigued me. Not only was I pleasantly surprised, but I also got a great history lesson as a bonus. The author weaved his fast paced plot through Russia, London, Berlin, and the Riviera and carried me right along with him. By the time I hit the halfway mark, I began to wonder why it has taken me so long to read this genre. If The Silent Oligarch is representative of the genre, count me in for more, especially if they're penned by Mr. Jones.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted February 19, 2012
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