Kix follows the story through every stage of his hero's acquisitions of the unusual skills with which he would prosecute his war against the Nazis … Kix takes the reader from adventure to adventure, and all of it is narrated with a curiously effective combination of historical perspective and fictional thriller dramatics … Kix's account begins and ends with glimpses of that much older man, recalling the unspoken code of bravery that guided him and his comrades during the Resistance. The reminder that The Saboteur is at heart a hero's tale is very refreshing.
La Rochefoucauld earned a biographer worthy of his improbable life. Even though we know from the book’s prologue that the French aristocrat winds up living a long life, Kix builds narrative tension with masterfully detailed scenes and cliffhanger endings for each chapter … His distancing is admirable, but I kept longing for unintrusive paragraphs and sentences that would have shed light on his mission to excavate and make sense of his discoveries or dead-ends … The Saboteur is completely engrossing and elegantly told, which means any reader of this work will inevitably want more and more.
...an odd, ill-judged episode that took place when he was in his late 70s that he [Robert de La Rochefoucauld] is best remembered in France, and this forms both the prelude and the epilogue to Paul Kix’s biography, The Saboteur ... Mr. Kix has consulted numerous diaries, interviewed survivors and spent much time with La Rochefoucauld’s family and friends ...research is meticulous, though small errors have crept in...as Mr. Kix describes it, is a work of 'narrative nonfiction,' and it is written in a novelistic style, with much reported speech and many references to smells, sights, thoughts and feelings not actually possible to corroborate ...book does little to explain the decades of willful amnesia that settled over swathes of French society. But it provides a lively picture of a brave man, for whom patriotism, nobility and duty were immutable principles of life.