Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Greenland Breach by Bernard Besson

Release Date: October 30, 2013
Publisher: Le French Book
Translator: Julie Rose

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars.

A stylish, fast-paced spy thriller about the intrigue, economic warfare and struggles for natural resources promised by global warming. The Arctic ice caps are breaking up. Europe and the East Coast of the United States brace for a tidal wave.

Meanwhile, former French intelligence officer John Spencer Lariviere, his karate-trained, steamy Eurasian partner, Victoire, and their bisexual computer-genius sidekick, Luc, pick up an ordinary freelance assignment that quickly leads them into the glacial silence of the great north, where a merciless war is being waged for control of discoveries that will change the future of humanity. - synopsis provided by the publisher

Let me first say that I am very much glad that I accepted the request to be a part of the blog tour by France Book Tours ( ) for this book by Bernard Besson. I entered a giveaway at Goodreads for this book but failed to win a copy. Though the book is a little out of my usual comfort zone, I was really drawn in by the synopsis for the book (which is given above). Once I had a copy, I will freely admit that I dove right in.

From the very beginning of the book, the stage is set for action. Not only are we, the readers, thrown into the middle of a murder in progress but we are introduced to the trio of main characters of the book. I believe the author did an excellent job in giving enough information about the character at the right time and letting the reader find out the other things as the book went along instead of all at once.

Even when the story begins to travel down the roads of advanced technologies, spy lingo and ecological theories, the author really does a brilliant job in bringing down the level so that the layman will understand. Yet, he doesn't allow the story to make the reader feel dumb. Instead, it's as though we, the readers, are learning along with John, Victoire and Luc. There may be a few things we are privy to that the trio isn't at certain points in the book, but I'll tell you honestly, there aren't that many.

I have to say that I'm amazed at the level of research the author poured into this book. Not only are there little known facts about areas in France, but other places as well. He goes to great lengths to educate the reader about the Inuits and their culture in Greenland, the ancestral divide caused by the Danish and other countries within Greenland. The descriptions of the land areas in the book are beautifully crafted. It was quite easy for me to imagine stepping off the plane with John upon his arrival in Greenland and seeing the stark whiteness of the land in some areas as well as his shock at seeing the Northern Lights so close for the very first time.

The only thing that ticked me off about the entire book was thinking that I had things figured out with the clues I had learned only to discover I was wrong! Each and every time I thought I had it, the author threw another wrench in the works. By the time I neared the end of the book, I still hadn't figured everything out. For once I had to go along with the characters and blindly turn the corner as they did. So frustrating but it made the book worth so much more.

All in all, the book is fast paced and well written to the point that one could lose themselves easily within the story. I truly enjoyed reading it. If you are looking for a thriller which keeps you guessing until that last chapter, then pick this book up! I'm so grateful it was translated into English!

The Greenland Breach by Bernard Besson will be available in e-book format at many online retailers upon its release. You can purchase the book at any of the links below.

About the Author:
Award-winning thriller writer, Bernard Besson, who was born in Lyon, France, in 1949, is a former top-level chief of staff of the French intelligence services, an eminent specialist in economic intelligence and Honorary General Controller of the French National Police. He was involved in dismantling Soviet spy rings in France and Western Europe when the USSR fell and has real inside knowledge from his work auditing intelligence services and the police. He has also Written a number of prize-winning thrillers and several works of nonfiction. He currently lives in the fourteenth arrondissement of Paris, right down the street from his heroes.
For more information, visit

About the Translator:
Julie Rose is a prize-winning, world-renowned translator of major French thinkers, known for, among other works, her acclaimed translation of Victor Hugo's Les Miserables, which was published by Random House in 2008. She has translated twenty-eight books, including many French classics, and writes on the side. She lives in her hometown of Sydney, Australia, with her husband, dog and two cats.


  1. Thank you so much Kay for this review. I'm glad you liked it. Lot's of good news for those who like it: you'll be able to pre-order the print book soon, and a sequel just came out in France.

    1. You're most welcome. I truly enjoyed the book and can't wait for the sequel! I want to know what kind of trouble the trio finds themselves in next. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. awesome review! thanks. Emma [FBT]

    1. Thank you, Emma! I appreciate the opportunity to be a part of the tour!