Trying Out An Espionage Thriller (Plus Inspired Art!)

Apr 19, 2019

Hi, I’m Sarah and I like to read thrillers. Oh, you knew that already? Did you know that I have never read an espionage thriller? Not one spy novel has gone under my belt! It’s not that I dislike spy thrillers. It’s more like one never caught my eye. So when Amazon sent me The Eighth Sister by Robert Dugoni, I finally had a chance for one to catch my eye. And this one looked good right out of the packaging.

the eighth sister robert dugoni book cover

Here’s a little bit about The Eighth Sister: When his former bureau chief shows up with a new assignment that takes him undercover to Moscow, former CIA case officer Charles Jenkins jumps at the opportunity. But when he finds the mastermind behind the assassinations of a clandestine US spy cell, Jenkins begins to question everything that he was led to believe. In a deadly game of cat and mouse, Jenkins executes a daring escape, only to find himself abandoned by the agency he serves. The mission is over. Now the ultimate betrayal begins.

So I’m looking at my first spy read to be everything I’d want from a spy read plus an extra splash of treachery. Who could say no to that? And from the glowing reviews I’ve seen circulating about best-selling author Robert Dugoni, I feel safe saying that this is going to be good.

Current Reading Thoughts: I’m three chapters in and immediately into it. What threw me off (in the best way) is the age of the main characters - they’re actually in their sixties! Is that not unique for these kinds of stories? I feel like it is. And I love that! But what I love more is the strong sense of location. This story is set in Russia and it couldn’t be more clearer in the writing. From politics to the immense amount of snow, and the image of being crammed into a dirty public bus blew me away with a sense of feeling like I’m in Russia.

It inspired me so much that I had to create art. I grabbed my iPad and got to drawing.

My art piece (that you’ll see below) was inspired by the heavy coldness that Russia is known for. I wanted to draw a Russian landscape, so I researched different settings and came across a snowy scene by a building topped with giant colorful orbs.

Once I got the sketch down and it was time to color, I initially had a “cute” doodly approach. I was simply coloring in the buildings with an imperfect touch. But it didn’t seem fitting with the bold story The Eighth Sister tells, so I started over. This time, color block style.

I picked a color palette that reminded me of a cold winter. Lots of blues and a splash of pastel for contrast. Then I just had fun! Once the building was fully colored, I decided on a pale sky and a dark ground - pretty much the opposite of what a typical snow scene would look like. But I think it worked. Especially when I added officer Charles Jenkins to the bottom with his snow-puddle footsteps trailing behind.

the eighth sister robert dugoni inspired art

Here’s the final piece. At first it seemed basic but I think what I was going for was starkness. An aura of mystery. Just like what I feel The Eighth Sister will feel like while reading. I hope you like how it turned out!

If you want to join along with reading The Eighth Sister, you can find it on Amazon using my affiliate link which costs you nothing! Let me know if you decide on trying it out. I’m definitely going to dive into this and hopefully have Dugoni become one of my go-to thriller authors.

love sarah sign off

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