Science Fiction

Review: The Reluctant Assassin

Cover of "The Reluctant Assassin," Featuring the series name ("WARP") in silver letters above the silhouettes of two children in front of a blue glowing portal
Image from Goodreads

Title: The Reluctant Assassin

Series: W.A.R.P. #1

Author: Eoin Colfer

Genre: Science Fiction

Back Cover:

Riley, an orphan in Victorian London, has the misfortune of being apprenticed to Albert Garrick, magician-turned-murderer who uses his conjuring skills to access his victims’ dwellings. Riley’s first assassination takes a strange spin, though, when his prey turns out to be a scientist from the future, part of the FBI’s Witness Anonymous Relocation Program. Riley gets sucked into a wormhole to modern-day London, with Garrick hot on his heels. In modern London, Riley is helped by Chevron Savano, a seventeen-year-old FBI agent desperate to prove herself. Together, they must evade Garrick, who has been fundamentally altered by the wormhole. He is not only evil, but now has the knowledge of a scientist – and plans to literally change history.


Time travel isn’t always my thing, but I usually like assassins. But what really convinced me to pick this up was the author. I absolutely loved his Artemis Fowl series, so I had high hopes for The Reluctant Assassin.

Riley was enjoyable. He’d been through a lot and didn’t ask a lot of questions. But he got frustrated when he knew what he was talking about and nobody would listen. I enjoyed watching him experience modern London – especially when he took a Harry Potter movie as history. He was half street smart, half naive, and very enjoyable.

Chevie was interesting. She was highly athletic and driven (sometimes drifting into the stubborn side). Sometimes, though her athletic abilities seemed like a little too much. Sure, she loved working out and stuff, but she’s still a seventeen-year-old girl. Don’t get me wrong, I did like her, but sometimes it felt like there weren’t any limits to her abilities.

I can’t mention the plot without mentioning Garrick. So, the protagonists were a seventeen-year-old FBI agent that nobody really listens to and a Victorian-era assassin’s apprentice. Garrick was a freaking brilliant illusionist and murderer who gets way, way too much knowledge from the quantum tunnel that brought him to modern times. He seemed invincible.

Let me tell you, this was one of the most tense books I’ve read in a while, just because Garrick was so powerful and Chevie and Riley had nothing. But it had its fun moments – mainly Riley in modern London and then Chevie in Victorian London.

The plot was fabulous, but I didn’t really fall in love with the characters. (Although I seem to recall picking up the second Artemis Fowl book purely because of plot, so hopefully I’ll grow to love Riley and Chevie.) I have no clue what book two, The Hangman’s Revolution, will be about, but I’m looking forward to reading it!

The W.A.R.P. series:

  1. The Reluctant Assassin
  2. The Hangman’s Revolution
  3. The Forever Man

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