An Israeli Agent Plots Revenge in ‘Last Instructions’
Last Instructions: A Thriller (Agent 10483) By Nir Hezroni (St. Martin’s Press, 346 pp. $27.99)
Agent 10483 is an Israeli 007, with some crucial distinctions. For one thing, he’s been in a coma for 10 years, and now that he’s awake, he’s plotting revenge against the Mossad-like secret organization that betrayed him. A missing Soviet nuclear warhead will help him carry out his plan.
The plot, a continuation of the events of author Nir Hezroni’s previous work, Three Envelopes, is somewhat jumbled. The agent was brainwashed into murdering a few scientists who may or may not know the whereabouts of the warhead, then brainwashed to commit suicide. Therein lies the complication: He survives and decides to turn on his handlers by pitting Israel against the United States.
With a background in technology and physics, and a few years of military intelligence under his belt, Hezroni is capable of packing rich logistical details into the story, giving it technical plausibility. But Last Instructions falls short in the storytelling. Some readers may find the out-of-the-box style—shifting from first- to third-person, dialogue without attribution, sections written in light-faced italic type to denote dream sequences—somewhat off-putting.
Adam Dickter is a public relations executive.