My Immaculate Assassin
by David Huddle
Both a steamy romance and a cyber-thriller, My Immaculate Assassin raises disturbing and timely questions about the technology and morality of “idealistic” murder, carried out remotely.
Maura Nelson, who has a sophisticated background in science, medicine, and programming, has stumbled upon a way to execute someone using only the computers in her home office — silently, anonymously, leaving no trace of violence, so that her target appears to have died of natural causes. Maura tests her method by eliminating Syrian tyrant Bashar al-Assad, but this experience affects her so deeply that she doesn’t want to continue alone. She entices Jack Plymouth into a partnership to rid the world of those they decide “need to be dead.” Both a steamy romance and a cyber-thriller, My Immaculate Assassin raises disturbing and timely questions about the technology and morality of “idealistic” murder, carried out remotely.
Praise for Huddle’s previous novel, The Faulkes Chronicle:
“A vividly striking yet subtly nuanced portrait of a family’s past and future emerges despite, or perhaps because of, a present mired in perplexing uncertainty and assured grief. A marvel.” — Booklist
“A profoundly moving meditation on death, on a great and unsentimental familial love, on the role of storytelling, and on how hard it is to say goodbye to a beautiful life.” — Jane McCafferty
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“A sharp and canny cultural observer and versatile novelist, Huddle (The Faulkes Chronicle, 2014) takes the notion of ‘be careful what you wish for’ to its most eerie and depraved conclusion in this erotically charged and darkly motivated novel of lust and retribution. A middle-aged spinster with a government security clearance and wicked-mad computer skills, Maura Nelson makes good on the Apple slogan that ‘there’s an app for that’ when she develops a program combining DNA and GPS technology that can assassinate a person with just the click of a mouse. She’s already used it to take out Syrian despot Bashar al-Assad and make it look like he died from natural causes. Now she and her new lover, Jack Plymouth, point her laser of death on those they, and they alone, deem worthy: a Supreme Court justice, a radio talkshow host, a TV-news pundit, an abuser of small boys, and a defiler of young girls. Their actions do not stay entirely below the radar, however, and their emotions do not stay in check, making this a literary thriller with a moral conundrum. Though Huddle thinly alters the identities of Maura’s targets, making the satire juicy and fun, the notion of impulsive revenge is an unnerving and alarming one in an era of taunting rhetoric and random violence.” — Carol Haggas, Booklist starred review