(Russian Bodyguard Series Book 1)
By: Julia Gousseva
Blurb: They live a life of danger, sacrifice, and bravery. They die saving others but get no fame, no medals, and no solemn ceremonies. They are…
Nikolai, a bodyguard in the prestigious Centurion Personal Protection agency, is injured in the line of duty. While recovering from his injuries, he is assigned to a new client. An easy case, his boss tells him.
Nikolai travels to a small quiet town north of Siberia to provide protection for a young woman, on her dad’s request. At first, both Nikolai and his boss see the assignment as a whim of a rich overprotective father. But the more Nikolai learns about the town, the oil company that the young woman is working for, and the people involved, the more he encounters secrets, suspicious behaviors, lies, and threats. In an unexpected and frightening course of events, Nikolai’s easy assignment becomes one of the toughest and the most dangerous.
Review: Trudging through the tundra in Siberia certainly is not high on my list. Protecting a spoiled girl in a remote village in Komi Republic near the Russian Arctic Circle sits on the bottom. But that’s what Nikolai finds himself doing.
Nikolai is a bodyguard. He sleeps, eats, thinks protection and he is good at his job. His clients are high level Russian executives, executives who don’t always agree with the new Russian political environment. When one such client was the subject of a drive by shooting, it was Nikolai who took the bullet, allowing his client to get away with only a few scratches.
Now, on light duty to recuperate, he finds himself trudging through wind driven snow, on a barely lit path, in a compound of ancient buildings near the arctic circle. Why? To protect Natalya, spoiled by her nouveau riche father, who has taken a position as a translator for Luzinsk Oil.
Julia Gousseva paints the picture of the remote village so clearly that I felt myself getting cold as I sat on my recliner reading Gray Shadows. “This should be a simple project” said his boss Anatoly. Little did he know at the time.
Russia, during the 1990s was vastly different from the Russia we know today and even more different from cold war Russia. Government officials were trying to figure out their new status, never sure who was on their side, or who they could bribe.
Previously nationalized companies were set free and had to survive competition as well as corruption. Luzinsk Oil was one such company that was trying to dig itself out of the hole created by the former government supported and corrupt management. Nikolai and Natalya find themselves in the midst of that political storm.
The story unwinds as Nikolai finds several major security breeches that Vanya, chief of security never felt important. How will Nikolai protect his client when the fate of the entire company is at risk? Who will have to die for him to complete his mission?
Gray Shadows is a good, fast read with several twists and turns the will keep you wondering who is on what side. And even better, it appears to be perpetually free on Amazon.
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