Title: The Reluctant Assassin
Author: Eoin Colfer
Narrator: Maxwell Caulfield
Publisher: Listening Library
Format: Unabridged Audio
Length: 9 hrs 29 mins
Publication: May 7, 2013
Source: Gift- Audio Book Sync
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Riley, a teen orphan boy living in Victorian London, has had the misfortune of being apprenticed to Albert Garrick, an illusionist who has fallen on difficult times and now uses his unique conjuring skills to gain access to victims' dwellings. On one such escapade, Garrick brings his reluctant apprentice along and urges him to commit his first killing. Riley is saved from having to commit the grisly act when the intended victim turns out to be a scientist from the future, part of the FBI's Witness Anonymous Relocation Program (WARP) Riley is unwittingly transported via wormhole to modern day London, followed closely by Garrick.
In modern London, Riley is helped by Chevron Savano, a nineteen-year-old FBI agent sent to London as punishment after a disastrous undercover, anti-terrorist operation in Los Angeles. Together Riley and Chevie must evade Garrick, who has been fundamentally altered by his trip through the wormhole. Garrick is now not only evil, but he also possesses all of the scientist's knowledge. He is determined to track Riley down and use the timekey in Chevie's possession to make his way back to Victorian London where he can literally change the world.
I was surprised by how much I loved this book. Chevie Savano is a tough girl just trying to become a "real" FBI agent. She is taking her small role seriously. Riley is just trying to survive day to day in late 1890's England. This is a test within it self not to mention Riley is training to be an assassin and his teacher is one scary dude.
During the story we learn how each main character came to be in their current situation and the motivations for their actions. It's easy to see why Agent Orange's father hid the time keys. Perhaps he should have moonlighted in another area or time.
This is an entertaining read. It's clear there is a need for a second book but this could have easily been a standalone. I'm excited to see where the next book takes Chevie and Riley I'm positive adventure is in their future.
This is a single voiced unabridged audio performed by Maxwell Caulfield. He does a outstanding job with variations in gender and with differentiating each character. Pace is well maintained throughout the production. Caulfield is able to breathe emotion and intent into his narration.