ARC Book Review: The Kremlin’s Candidate by Jason Matthews


ashley | Spy books aren’t really my go to, but I stumbled upon Red Sparrowa few years ago and Jason Matthews trapped me in his written web. Like with it’s follow up, Palace of Treason, Matthews brings another action-packed continuation with The Kremlin’s Candidate, reuniting me with the Dominika and Nate. Now that Red Sparrow is being made into a movie, I was curious to see how this series wrapped up. 

Sadly, I had a really hard time jumping back into this. I enjoyed the previous books, but I’ve fallen out of touch with the story and while Matthews does a great job of resetting the stage, I forgot how over saturated the story is with politics and spy lingo and acronyms. It’s a heavy book with a lot of things happening and a lot of people whose job is not to stand out, so they all sort of blended together for me, even though I’ve met most of them in previous books.  

There’s no denying that the tone of this book matches the tone of our political platform in North American right now. The reality of our platform may even be a bit more outrageous than this work of fiction, to be honest. I’m already a little jaded and tired of hearing the nonsense that makes headlines, so reading a whole book about a similar plot was a bit too much for me right now. 

That said, there were definitely great moments in this book. Matthews really shows his knowledge and experience in this secretive world and I find it really interesting to get this fictional inside look at how operations go. This was a sort of cat and mouse story, with the CIA trying to flush out a mole before the clock runs out and their double agent is revealed.

It was an intense, edge of your seat story that got stronger the closer I got to the end. But I’m not sure I really liked how it ended. I don’t know what I was expecting or hoping for, but it left me with a sense of disappointment. Not enough to impact the rest of the book, but if this is indeed the last in this series, which it seems like it is, I was hoping for a different feeling in the end. 


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amazongoodreads simonschuster

february 13, 2018

copy provided for honest review by
Net Galley