Jump to content

Raven's Reads


Recommended Posts

  • Replies 527
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Posted Images

Writing this whilst it is still fresh in my mind...

 

V2.jpg

 

V2

By Robert Harris

 

It is the winter of 1944.  On the Dutch coast a disillusioned German engineer goes about his duties without enthusiasm, preparing V2 rockets for firing at London, knowing he is fighting a war that is already lost.  In London, concerned that they have no way of countering the V2 threat, the Air Ministry authorises a new initiative to find and destroy the V2 launch sites...  

 

The story in V2 spans a five day period and is told from the point of view of two characters on the different sides of the battle.  Like Harris's other novels, this is a fictional account of historical events, and although it contains historical figures the two leads are fictional; the German scientist Rudi Graf, and British WAAF Kay Caton-Walsh. 

 

V2 is the third Robert Harris book I have read, and I would have to say it is the weakest by quite a way.  Whilst the historical side of the story is interesting and well researched - covering both the development, construction and operation of the V2 rockets as well as British photographic intelligence work at RAF Medmenham - the book doesn't really have a plot to underpin it.  Unlike Fatherland (with its quest to uncover a truth) or Enigma (which is a spy story), V2 is really just a sequence of events.

 

Quite a bit of the novel actually reminded me of Enigma, and not just because of it's war time setting.  Graf, though interesting, is really a watered down Tom Jericho; another intelligent, well educated character who seems to be on the edge of a breakdown, and as with Jericho it is questionable how much the character would really have been able to get away with, despite his position.  Kay Caton-Walsh is possibly a bit more rounded, but again I found some of the events she was caught up in stretched credulity.  Whether there was a better way to tell the same story I don't know, but some parts felt like padding and it sometimes came across as two or possibly three stories trying to work as one.

 

I got through the book quite quickly (for me!) mainly because of the factual side of the story, but the longer it went on the more I increasingly found myself wondering where the plot was! (the ending is somewhat contrived as well).

 

Overall, and despite some of the comments above, I did for the most part enjoy the book, but I suspect I would have enjoyed the next George Smiley I have to read more.

 

Interesting for the historical information, a bit light on story.

 

3/5.

 

I have a suspicion someone else read this recently, but I cannot remember who!

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 02/05/2022 at 10:20 PM, Raven said:

V2 is the third Robert Harris book I have read, and I would have to say it is the weakest by quite a way. 

 

 

I've read a lot of Harris's work and while I rate him quite highly, I do feel like his most recent output is his weakest. For me his best work is the Cicero trilogy which feels like a lot of time and effort went into writing. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share


×
×
  • Create New...