The Magnificent Siberian

In Russia, everything has a price.

In Far East Siberia, Russia, a sense of independence from the central government prevailed, even under harsh Communist rule. Now, with the nation in political turmoil, poachers operate in brazen defiance of the law. Their targets—rare Siberian tigers—fetch hundreds of thousands of dollars on the black market.

American biologist Chris Harmon is part of a joint Russian-American research team investigating the tigers’ survival in the Sikhote-Alin preserve. Harmon’s recent discovery of a tiger and her three young cubs is threatened by a politician’s lucrative thirty-year logging contract, which could destroy their habitat. His petition to oppose the deal is dismissed, but Harmon’s efforts to protect the endangered animals are getting someone’s attention.

Former KGB hit man Sergei Lemenov is a dangerous man, not just a hunter of unusual animals, but of men too. He saves a piece of each of his victims—man or beast—giving him the gruesome nickname, The Collector. He’s been ordered to obtain the tigers and to silence Harmon, permanently. Now, Harmon must navigate a labyrinth of bureaucratic red tape, ruthless Communist sympathizers, and a complicated international trafficking ring to save the tigers, and himself.


“Mr. Charbonneau has created a lively melange. He takes us on a guided tour of Vladivostok, a city rather off the tourist beat. There is a mysterious femme fatale, but the book’s real heroine is a Siberian tiger with three cubs who has been wounded by a poacher. The author will have you cheering her on.”

The New York Times Book Review

“Charbonneau does a solid job of keeping the plot moving and building a constant sense of danger around the scientist and his journalist friend [...] And give Charbonneau credit for accomplishing a difficult task; combining an environmental issue — the impending extinction of a species — with a pretty good suspense story.”

Chicago Tribune

“When Charbonneau writes about the tigers, the pages sing — the images are so vivid it is like watching a color movie in your mind.”

San Francisco Examiner

“Charbonneau has produced another winner […] an unusual and entertaining tale […] combin[ing] his considerable skills as a top-notch adventure-writer with those of a confirmed environmentalist with a message […] Charbonneau brings the main parts together in a suspenseful and unexpected conclusion back in the taiga where it started. The eco-thriller is a well-written story on a new but credible theme in the post-Cold War era.”

Newport Press

“This exciting novel is so contemporary you might think you’re reading today’s newspaper as you follow the action that swirls around the environment, protection of vanishing wildlife (the Siberian tiger), international assassins, and a Russian strongman who is plotting against Boris Yeltsin [...] A fast moving tale […] One must read this book carefully because there are plots within plots but always, somehow, the action comes back to the wounded tiger and her cubs….”

The Madison Courier

Awards & Accolades