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Literature / Gift der Republik

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Gift der Republik (German: "Poison of the Republic") is a 2015 German thriller novel by Gerd Henrich.

During the 80s, Dr. Frank Granow an East German biochemist develops the perfect weapon - an instant, untraceable poisonous serum. As the KGB sniffs out his trail, he commits suicide to prevent the serum from falling into their hands, instead hiding it and giving the instructions to his daughter Katja. Some years later, Andrey Karloff, a ruthless former KGB operative, discovers Granow's file and seeks it out. It's now up to Katja to make sure that the lethal serum stays out of the wrong hands...

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Tropes:

  • Bolivian Army Ending: The original stock of the serum is either expended or lost. Katja makes the story public. Karloff is dead, but the recipe for the serum has wound up in the hands of the Islamic State's new leader who has the serum mass-produced.
  • Book Dumb: Karloff and Chikalto have no idea of biochemistry. This causes Karloff to not be able to reproduce the serum, and Chikalto to mistake it for something else entirely. This comes to bite him later - He tests it on one of his goons and then instructs the same goon to take the serum to Moscow. The henchman dies by the serum and the cargo is lost, causing a problem for Chikalto when he tries to sell it to ISIS.
  • Chekhov's Gunman: Hyunh Bian, a soldier survived from the massacre of the secret laboratory personnel, resurfaces much later. He is tricked by ISIS to show them the site where the lab was so they can locate a tree like the one from which the serum components were extracted.
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  • Evilutionary Biologist: Frank Granow has no qualms about lethal human experimentation. He does it with a smile on his face.
  • Evil vs. Evil:
  • The Great Politics Mess-Up: The serum is greated directly before that, and after that various parties emerge to claim possession of it.
  • Herr Doktor: Despite being a staunch communist rather than the usual Nazi variant, Granow fits the trope to a T.
  • Honey Trap: Frank Granow's Russian friend Dmitri Yandlevski stages this for him in order to drug and interrogate him.
  • In Love with the Mark: At the beginning, Karloff only spies on Katja to trace the Granow-Serum. He soon becomes romantically and/or sexually obsessed with her.
  • The Mafiya: Boris Chikalto is a crime boss with whom Karloff often deals.
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  • Murder the Hypotenuse: Karloff's obsession with Katja leads him to kill her boyfriend in a violent fashion, even if he only originally kidnapped him to gain access into Katja's apartment.
  • Renegade Russian: Andrej Karloff used to be a KGB operative, now working for himself.
  • State Sec: At the start, the rivalry is between KGB and Stasi.
  • Truth Serum: The KGB use the one produced by Project MKULTRA on Frank Granow, sold to them by broke CIA agents.
  • The War on Terror: ISIS emerges as a player later on.
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