The Travelers, published by Chris Pavone in 2016, is one of the most entertaining books I’ve read in a long time. And that’s interesting, because his basic premise could easily have been too far fetched to support a short story, let alone a 646 page (in the edition I read) tome.
Maybe one of the things that helps the book succeed is the main character, a travel writer who is a nice young man with standards in life, including doing his job well and being faithful to his wife. A second positive factor is that while Will Rhodes is the main character, several other personages, both good and bad, are presented in non-judgmental detail. This leads to the source of the suspense that carries the plot along – which of the characters are the good guys and which are the bad guys? Except for Will, whose motivations are innocent as he gets himself in trouble, we don’t know which side the other characters are on. One side may represent the CIA, even though it engages in some apparent crimes, but which one?
I can think of a third factor that makes the book enjoyable, and that is the development of Will Rhodes as he marshals his strengths, which are diligence, thoroughness, and willingness to try new things and to head undeterred into unappealing situations, to solve his problems.