Whitney Pastorek
July 23, 2004 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Garden of Beasts

type
Book
Current Status
In Season
author
Jeffery Deaver
genre
Fiction

We gave it a B

Nazis. We hate those guys. And in Garden, Deaver brings a surprisingly nuanced eye to the National Socialists in the days before the 1936 Olympics, capturing the terror that soaked Berlin that summer. But don’t worry: ”Garden” is also a zippy tale about an American hitman in town to do one last job — on a high-ranking (though fictional) Nazi official. The supporting cast is classic noir: the intrepid cop, the sad ex-teacher landlady, the local huckster, all straight out of central casting. Crammed full of historical references (at one point, Jesse Owens saves our hero’s hide), ”Garden” is the rare thriller that deals in layered emotions but still gives one good ride.

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