Hardcover, 600 pages, Published December 3rd, 2017, by Tell-Tale Publishing Group, LLC
Rating – 4/5
The blast from the shotgun decimated his face leaving behind a gory mess of brains and blood.
That’s how Luther Baggot, a bounty hunter assassin, slays his victims. Baggot is after a list containing the names of influential social democrats who fled Otto von Bismarck’s tyrannical regime. Two of these families are the Josephsons from Sweden and the Wohlman brothers from Germany, both of whom took refuge in America. The Josephsons settle on a farm in Minnesota, and the Wohlman brothers establish a successful business in Chicago.
Unfortunately, Baggot tracks down Olaf and Ingrid Josephson and kills them. Consequently, the Josephson children, Newt and Julie, are forced to flee. They hide in a logging camp up north and ultimately land in St. Cloud. There they meet Matias Bauman alias Heinrich Wohlman, a former friend of the Josephsons. He takes them to Chicago, an unfamiliar world to them, where they are plunged headlong into the bedlam of urban politics and the violence of their past.
The Revolutionist by Robert Tucker is a well-researched, gripping work of historical fiction. Tucker weaves an intricate tale of political intrigue, violence, hope, and redemption. Supported by a large cast of characters including J.P. Morgan, it delivers an entertaining, immersive story with eloquent descriptions of America at the cusp of the Industrial Revolution.
In The Revolutionist, Tucker has sketched a bare-knuckle portrait of twentieth-century America revealing its seedy underbelly along with its prosperity. Thanks to Tucker, I got a glimpse of America teeming with immigrants from all over the world who became a part of her history. This novel also shows humanity at its worst and its best. It shows how the avarice of a few powerful men breaks the spirits of thousands of hard-working men and women, and how despite all odds, the resilient human spirit always survives. Moreover, Tucker brilliantly interlaces the coming-of-age story of Julie within this historical fiction. Her metamorphosis from a frightened child to a determined girl seeking revenge transpires quietly which provides a satisfying dénouement to this 600-page tome.
This could have been a masterpiece if not for an inconsistency. Without revealing any spoilers, I can only say Baggot attacks one of the Wohlman brothers. How is it possible when hidden bodyguards were supposedly protecting them? Further, I felt the inclusion of some characters was unnecessary and hence, dragged the story a bit.
I am glad I forayed into the genre of historical fiction with The Revolutionist. It is recommended for fans of historical fiction and for those seeking a great story. It is not a slow-paced read but is not rip-roaring either hence, adrenaline junkies may not like it.
I reviewed this book for Readers’ Favorite.
This review is also posted on Goodreads.