After one of their friends disappears, three young Soviet Jews hijack an airliner and demand passage to Israel. In the style that has won him comparisons to Graham Greene and John le Carré, acclaimed thriller writer Gerald Seymour zeroes in on the moral ambiguities of the activists' deeds. As several nations agonize over the conflict between political freedom and the safety of innocent bystanders, Seymour forces us to wonder whether the hijackers are victims, terrorists, or both.
As in all his novels, Seymour focuses on the everyman foot soldier torn between the enemy before him and the high-ranking diplomats at his back. Charlie Webster is a world-weary counter-terrorism expert who has been called away from his soft desk job to negotiate with the hijackers. Gripping, explosive, yet still fully human, Kingfisher demonstrates the concept that elevates all of Seymour's stories: victory in multinational political conflicts is quite often Pyrrhic at the personal level.