Being a voracious reader, I have read tens of thousands of books in my life so far. As true reader, I have read more than I can remember and remember more than I have read. Till date, hundreds of books have been my favorites, and it is really difficult to name any one book as my all time favorite.
However, if am coerced to select one book as my favorite, I would certainly choose The Day of a Jackal by Frederick Forsyth.
What a book it was, or rather is! A book that satisfied all my senses thoroughly and still left the hunger lingering. Forsyth became my favorite author since then, and I, his loyal all time fan. Frederick has his own unique style of storytelling combined with facts and myths.
The amount of research he puts into his work is tremendous and requires a great deal of passion.
The book revolves around a plot to assassinate French president Charles D’ Gaulle by some of his former lieutenants disenchanted by his policies.
The group of men then selects a professional killer, code named as the Jackal, to carry out the assassination. The story starts building from this point.
The Jackal begins his preparations after negotiating the deal as per his conditions and satisfaction.
Jackal preferred anonymity during the whole operation and considered this as his major weapon. It really thrilled me to read about his preparations, and everything seemed logical. His robbing of passports from tourists, for the anonymous journey to France, was ecstatic.
Procuring of the killer weapon and getting it upgraded according to his needs was phenomenal. He knew exactly what he required to successfully carry out the killing.
The plan was made after non-stop smoking and thinking on the bed of his studio apartment.
The book has shades of romance as well, though it was according to the situations that presented themselves unannounced.
The Jackal’s adventurous journey to France was full of enough excitement to cause goose bumps.
His entry into France and a series of recce for a perfect location suitable for killing the French president seemed magical to me. The man had guts after all.
At some points, I felt that Frederick knew everything about various assassination attempts that were made on Charles D’ Gaulle in real life.
I was truly intrigued by author’s research on the subject. His character knew on what occasion the president would make a public appearance at all costs no matter what.
I sometimes think as if some divine power helped Forsyth to complete the book. And, I have reasons for my thinking. The book is so complete, without any factual or fictional faults, that it raises questions.
Forsyth’s habit of going into the minutest detail of things and characters fascinated me the most.
He knows about the weapons, world leaders, and wars since he was a mercenary soldier himself, before turning up into a journalist. He utilizes the knowledge gathered from the field in his books.
A Hollywood movie starring Bruce Willis was also made on this book, but failed to do justice with it.