The following is a summary of Code to Zero by Ken Follett from his website:
A man wakes up to find himself lying on the ground in a railway station, his mind stripped bare of all recollection. He has no idea how he got there; he does not even know his own name. Convinced he is a drunken down and out, it isn't until a newspaper report about a satellite launch catches his eye that he suspects all is not what it seems...
The year is 1958, and America is about to launch its first satellite in a desperate attempt to match the Soviet Sputnik and regain the lead in the space race. As Luke Lucas gradually unravels the mystery of his amnesia, he realizes that his fate is bound up with that of the rocket that stands ready on launch pad 26B at Cape Canaveral.
And as he relearns the story of his life, he uncovers long-kept secrets about his wife, his best friend and the woman he once loved more than life itself...
Code to Zero deals with one of the most ruthlessly contested arenas of the Cold War. Deceit and betrayal, love and trust interweave at the most political and personal levels, while the spectre of mind-control hovers constantly above. Each second brings destruction closer...
Code to Zero is a book that is packed with mystery, suspense, espionage, and love that leaves you perched on the edge of your seat until it is completed. I wasn't sure what to expect from Follett, as this is the first book that I have read (listened to) by him.
When Luke wakes up in a Washington D.C. train station dressed like a bum and with a case of amnesia, he finds himself having to rely on little clues to help piece is life together. Throughout the story, pieces of his memory come back to him through flashbacks. He learns that he is married to his college sweetheart, Elspeth, but just cannot understand how they became married. He had a later memory that put him in a very heated and romantic relationship with Billie, also a college friend, but just doesn't understand how that relationship dissolved.
As the book progressses Luke learns that he is actually a rocket scientist and the launch of Explorer I may be in jeopardy. I think that everyone is aware of the animosity that developed from space programs between the Russians and Americans and this book really highlighted the intensity of that period of time very well.
Between the CIA, the KGB, and the double agents Luke really wasn't sure who to trust towards the end of this novel. He had to rely on his instincts and make quick decisions that would affect his future and American history.
I don't want to go into too much detail as this book is categorized as a suspense/thriller, but I really did enjoy it, especially as an audiobook, and will more than likely read more of Follett's work in the future.
My Rating: 4/5