adbl_ms_membershipImage_includedwith_altText_B076FLV3HT
adbl_ms_membershipImage_includedwith_altText_B076FLV3HT

1 audiobook of your choice.
Stream or download thousands of included titles.
$14.95 a month after 30 day trial. Cancel anytime.
Buy for $28.00

Buy for $28.00

Pay using card ending in
By confirming your purchase, you agree to Audible's Conditions of Use and Amazon's Privacy Notice. Taxes where applicable.

Publisher's Summary

"[A] powerhouse of a novel.... It reads as if Haruki Murakami rewrote The Day of the Jackal." (Locus Magazine

"Editor's Choice" New York Times Book Review

"The Most Anticipated Crime Books of 2019" CrimeReads

"Most Anticipated Books of 2019" Lit Hub

"This Winter's Best Thrillers" Chicago Review of Books

"Best Books of the Year" Apple

A fantastical crime novel set in an alternate Seoul where assassination guilds compete for market dominance.

Behind every assassination, there is an anonymous mastermind - a plotter - working in the shadows. Plotters quietly dictate the moves of the city's most dangerous criminals, but their existence is little more than legend. Just who are the plotters? And more important, what do they want?

Reseng is an assassin. Raised by a cantankerous killer named Old Raccoon in the crime headquarters "The Library", Reseng never questioned anything: where to go, who to kill, or why his home was filled with books that no one ever read. But one day, Reseng steps out of line on a job, toppling a set of carefully calibrated plans. And when he uncovers an extraordinary scheme set into motion by an eccentric trio of young women - a convenience store clerk, her wheelchair-bound sister, and a cross-eyed librarian - Reseng will have to decide if he will remain a pawn or finally take control of the plot.

Crackling with action and filled with unforgettable characters, The Plotters is a deeply entertaining thriller that soars with the soul, wit, and lyricism of real literary craft.

©2019 Un-su Kim (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Editor's Choice" New York Times Book Review

"9 New Books We Recommend This Week" New York Times

"The Most Anticipated Crime Books of 2019" CrimeReads

“Most Anticipated Books of 2019” Lit Hub

"This Winter's Best Thrillers" Chicago Review of Books

"Picks of the Week" Publishers Weekly

"The Best Books of the Week" New York Post

"The Best Reviewed Books of the Week" Book Marks 

"The Plotters tells the story of Renseng, a jaded assassin who startles himself by realizing - somewhat belatedly - that he has a moral code, a sense of honor, a soul. All of these will prove to be perilous liabilities in his world. Un-Su Kim is a tremendous writer, and he’s crafted a smart, stylish, and surprisingly moving thriller.” (Scott Smith, author of A Simple Plan and The Ruins

The Plotters, translated from the Korean by Sora Kim-Russell, is a lot of fun. Criminal underworlds are the playground of writers and filmmakers of every brow level, and Un-su Kim’s is a wild tour.... The Plotters walks in the traditions of the noble detective and the samurai while spinning some new chewy bits probably best not mimicked. By the end, heroism rises out of the carnage to trump the nihilistic capitalism in a rousing climax.” (Los Angeles Review of Books)

"It would be hard to accuse The Plotters, a raucous extravaganza of assassins and lunatics by the lauded Korean writer Un-Su Kim, of conforming to any template." (New York Times Book Review)    

"The Plotters, rendered in English by Sora Kim-Russell, is an unusual book: a violent action-thriller that could also be a parable, a fable of good and evil stitched together with poignant threads.” (Wall Street Journal)  

More from the same

What listeners say about The Plotters

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    47
  • 4 Stars
    38
  • 3 Stars
    20
  • 2 Stars
    8
  • 1 Stars
    4
Performance
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    64
  • 4 Stars
    24
  • 3 Stars
    13
  • 2 Stars
    2
  • 1 Stars
    2
Story
  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    42
  • 4 Stars
    33
  • 3 Stars
    15
  • 2 Stars
    11
  • 1 Stars
    4

Reviews - Please select the tabs below to change the source of reviews.

Sort by:
Filter by:
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Not for multi-tasking

I listen to over 150 books a year so it stands to reason that I do so while doing other things - but with The Plotters I could not move, not get out of the car, not cook, not concentrate on anything but sitting and just listening. I had to know what would happen next. I loved it, and I think it is a book that will stay in my head for a long time because the author paints such a picture with his words that I am left feeling like I saw a movie.

24 people found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • R
  • 07-21-21

Intriguing, well done

Very Intriguing, makes you think on different levels. Well narrated, sparse clean elegant prose. Haunts you and makes you think about it long after it ends. One of my favorite surprising reads.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Great character study, uneven narration and pacing

A meat market and an old library called The Doghouse are an interesting setting for an underground society of assassins in Seoul. They give off similar vibes to the Hotel in John Wick, though the book doesn't explore them as much as I would have liked.

The dialogue and characters are all very interesting, though I wish some relationships were explored more deeply in the book. It felt like I didn't have enough time to get attached to some characters or relationships before it was over.

The narration was good at times, but very uneven for most of the book. The delivery for Ressing didn't seem to match the writing.

Overall I enjoyed this book! It just could have used a little more character development, and better pacing.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A unique take on a thriller adventure

I really enjoyed the unique style of the characters and plot. While the course of the plot was engaging, I was hoping for more of the "plotters" backstory but the focus was kept within the scope of the main actors. Fun characters that were enjoyable to get to know. I would say that the ending was different from "typical" American story. I'm not sure if I would say that I entirely liked it, but liked being forced to think about endings in a different way.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Dark and violent

At first I was drawn in by the narrator. The simple Hemingway style of the writing had a hypnotic quality and the surreal content was gripping. However, Homer never wrote of the death of Achilles. There is so evidence of this part of the ancient myth in a Chalcidian pot from the now-lost Penbroke-Hope collection, dated ca. 540 BC, which shows Achilles on the ground with an arrow sticking from his back and an arrow which has pierced his ankle. So it was disappointing that the author cites Homer as the source of this story. It is interesting that this leads the main character to ponder why Achilles never protected this part of his anatomy. Homer's text speaks often of the fated death of Achilles. Maybe something is lost in the translation the main character is reading in Korean. Or it was not Homer at all, just a book of generic Greek myths. Anyway, I was turned off by this and the depressing nature of the turn the story took after the first chapter. Not a story I can recommend.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Cinematic and philosophical

The Plotters is a gem I found in the sale “bin.” It reads like a film, owing to the fortuitous combination of writing, translation, and narration. The narrator uses a British accent and reflects, presumably, Korean class differences with Western dialects. I think the book hints at important elements of S. Korean history and culture, not least of which are colonialism, religion, capitalism, and gender. Yes, it’s violent and about assassins, but that’s what makes it good—the protagonist is introspective and really something of a hero—if that were even possible in his world.