A Cold-War spy thriller, written to perfection by the master of spy thrillers.
Rocket scientist Claude Lucas wakes up in a Union Station men’s room with no clue as to who he is or how he got there. He is hung over and dressed like a bum, and a fellow bum reassures him that he was on a total bender. As he tries to figure out his identity, he discovers multiple skills that suggest he is no ordinary derelict. People start following him, and little by little he pieces together a mystery with astounding implications, involving the Soviet Union, the space race, treason and personal betrayal. Also, at least two beautiful women are thrown into the mix, along with shootouts, cross-country chases, 13th hour countdowns, and enough flashbacks to fill in the holes in the story, and in Lucas’ memory.
Code to Zero is a fast read, an edge-of-your seat roller-coaster with all the makings of a made-for TV action thriller. In fact, I can easily see Matt Damon playing Luke. This is not a techno-sophisticated story, given that it takes place in the 1950s, but there was something truly appealing about reading a straightforward spy story with fleshed-out characters playing the heroes and villains. And the shocking twist at the end of the story is especially satisfying. Follett has done it yet again!