Warner, Mar 2003, 23.95, 288 pp.
Super agent Charlie Monk believes he works for an agency so stratospherically secret, the work force will not mention its name even in the most secure room. However, Charlie sometimes wonders who he really is. Though he performs perfectly when he works in the cold as a killing machine with no conscience completing his mission, Charlie has problems recalling mundane obvious details from his past.
When on home leave in Los Angeles, Charlie sleeps with a myriad of women and paints landscapes that some dealer buys before the canvas dries. In Washington D.C., Dr. Susan Flemyng conducts cutting edge experiments on replacing visual memory in the minds of amnesia victims. However, the government has forced her to work for a top-secret agency whose name is classified by kidnapping her son. Her guinea pigs include Charlie.
This Walter Mitty type tale starring a protagonist like James Bond or Derek Flint will leave the audience wondering who Charlie is. The story line grips the reader with that question from the onset, but when the answer seems obvious David Ambrose cleverly twists the plot around so that the audience has to repeat the query. Fans of strange thrillers will want to read the DISCRETE CHARM OF CHARLIE MONK in one sitting because the tale provides a wonderful espionage story within a medical subplot inside a weird but deep character study, contained in etc. etc. etc. Yet all of this yada yada yada turns into a tremendous novel.
The review of this Book prepared by Harriet Klausner