The Killer Collective by Barry Eisler [Book Review]

Book Review

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Title: The Killer Collective

Author: Barry Eisler

Publisher: Thomas & Mercer

Publish Date: February 1, 2019

Genre: Crime & Detective

Series: John Rain #10, Livia Lone #2.5, Ben Treven #4

My Rating: 4/5

The Killer Collective by Barry Eisler


When a joint FBI–Seattle Police investigation of an international child pornography ring gets too close to certain powerful people, sex-crimes detective Livia Lone becomes the target of a hit that barely goes awry—a hit that had been offered to John Rain, a retired specialist in “natural causes.”

Suspecting the FBI itself was behind the attack, Livia reaches out to former Marine sniper Dox. Together, they assemble an ad hoc group to identify and neutralize the threat. There’s Rain. Rain’s estranged lover, Mossad agent and honeytrap specialist Delilah. And black ops soldiers Ben Treven and Daniel Larison, along with their former commander, SpecOps legend Colonel Scot “Hort” Horton.

Moving from Japan to Seattle to DC to Paris, the group fights a series of interlocking conspiracies, each edging closer and closer to the highest levels of the US government.

With uncertain loyalties, conflicting agendas, and smoldering romantic entanglements, these operators will have a hard time forming a team. But in a match as uneven as this one, a collective of killers might be even better.

The Killer Collective by Barry Eisler


John Rain is a hitman offered a job targeting three individuals. He turns down the job, but is swept up in the action when one of the targets, Livia Lone, survives the attempted hit. Not only is John involved, but so are various others with connections to Rain and Livia.

Told using alternating points of view, this novel has a lot of characters and multiple storylines. Even though there was a lot going on, it was easy to follow and everything was wrapped up by the end.

The Killer Collective is part of a series. Actually, it’s part of multiple series by Barry Eisler. I didn’t realize that when I picked it as my First Reads book this month, but, fortunately, it was easily read as a standalone. This is book 10 in the John Rain series, book 3 in the Livia Lone series, and book 4 in the Ben Treven series. John Rain is a “retired” hitman. Livia Lone is a sex crimes detective. Ben Treven is a black ops soldier. I’m sure readers of these series get more from the book than I did, since they would already be familiar with the backstories of the characters. Still, I found it to be a good, fast-paced read. I may look into the earlier books in these series.

This thriller involves multiple government agencies. From Seattle PD to the FBI to the Secret Service. A fast-paced thriller with sex crimes, black ops, and multiple bad guys. Intriguing, complex, and exciting.

Books in the John Rain series:
  1. A Clean Kill in Tokyo
  2. A Lonely Resurrection
  3. Winner Take All
  4. Redemption Games
  5. Extremis
  6. The Killer Ascendant
  7. The Detachment
  8. Graveyard of Memories
  9. Zero Sum
  10. The Killer Collective
  11. The Chaos Kind

Books in the Livia Lone series:

  1. Livia Lone
  2. The Night Trade
  3. The Killer Collective
  4. All the Devils
  5. The Chaos Kind

Books in the Ben Treven series:

  1. Fault Line
  2. Inside Out
  3. The Detachment
  4. The Killer Collective

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