The Master Sniper
By Stephen Hunter

< 1999
By Condor

If you're looking for a good sniper novel to read, I highly recommend you pick up this book. It has a very unusual plot and a very suspenseful, thrilling conclusion. Unlike other works of fiction about military snipers, which take place while the war is at full-swing, this one takes place at the END of World War II.

The man behind the trigger is a chap named Repp, a champion of the German nation. Repp made a name for himself by killing Russians on the Eastern Front. As a "reward" of sorts, for his actions, he is entrusted to carry out a mission that only someone of his talents could pull off.

A theme which runs concurrently to Repp's sniper mission is the horror of the Holocaust. At first, it seems like this book is only using the Jewish to help put the reader into the right frame of mind, to bring history into life. However, as each chapter progresses, it is apparent that the fate of the Jewish is more of a focal point than it seemed initially. Repp's mission is to use a highly-sophisticated piece of equipment to assassinate a key figure that could change history. No, successfully completing his mission will not change the outcome of the war - and he knows it. Indeed, the war is still ongoing, comes to an end, and passes, during the course of this book... which, given the nature of Repp's mission, makes the reading more exciting than you could ever imagine. However, Repp is a man of honor, of conviction, and of loyalty - three characteristics that combine to make him perhaps the deadliest sniper in Europe.

Stephen Hunter, writer of Black Light and of Point of Impact, has done a fine job of demonstrating his knowledge of weaponry and history. Though written before the other two books, The Master Sniper is currently available as a re-release and should be easy to find. There is a certain "drive" that one develops while reading this book, that makes it all the more difficult to put the book down. There is a sense of urgency to Repp's mission, and to the mission of the three men who are trying to stop him. Give yourself time to get involved in this book... read the first three chapters before putting the book down to take a break... and you will find yourself taking every opportunity to pick the book up again.

Back to Book and Videotape Reviews