The Florentine – Tom Trott

*I received a free ARC of this book, with thanks to the author. The decision to review and my opinions are my own.*

Blurb: When Cain retired from the CIA, he moved to Florence, Italy to get away from his past.

He’s had nine years to enjoy fine wine, good food, and the Tuscan countryside.

But now his old boss has tracked him down, and he needs Cain to do one last job.

What starts as a simple trade entangles Cain in a web of secrets involving the mafia, an NSA whistleblower, and his own past.

With the Italian police and international assassins on his trail, he’ll have to survive the night to solve the mystery of who wants him dead.

I’m not usually much of an action thriller kind of reader, but having enjoyed this author’s detective mystery series and horror novel in the past, I couldn’t resist giving his new spy novel a go… and I am so glad I did!

I was drawn in from the start, as we see whistleblower Dolly threatened in a tense prologue, then thoroughly hooked on following ex-spy Cain as he is dragged from retirement to deal with the fallout of her actions and finds that his involvement may have deeper roots than he suspected.

This would be a perfect book to bring to the big screen, as it has all of the action you would expect from a big Hollywood blockbuster, with a clever plot to hang it all together and characters you can’t help rooting for (even when their actions are dubiously violent). And the dynamic between the main characters is superbly set, explored and developed – I really believed in all of them.

While I enjoyed my dabble into spies, mafia, bombs and guns, I will confess that my favourite character award went to Baroffio, the Italian Columbo! He is merely a side player here, but managed to steal the show for me, and I would LOVE to read a mystery series with him as the main character.

Action fans, spy thriller fans, classic mystery fans, will all enjoy this one, and it firmly cements my belief that this author can write in any genre he turns his hand to.

‘Like a sudden shower on a clear day, his past had returned, and although the rain had stopped for now there were dark clouds dotting the horizon. And he didn’t like it. He didn’t like it at all.’

– Tom Trott, The Florentine

The Florentine releases on 6th May 2022, but you can pre-order it on Amazon right now!

Find more from Tom Trott at his website here, or follow him on FacebookTwitterInstagram and Goodreads.

You can find my thoughts on his Brighton Detective trilogy on the following links: You Can’t Make Old FriendsChoose Your Parents WiselyIt Never Goes Away; my review of his horror novel, The Forbidden Zone here, and Tom’s thoughts on Ira Levin here.


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