I believe this is a rather early DeMille. Looks like he found a new, more ruthless editor.... But this one definitely has the vivid descriptions and action of all DeMille.
Although a bit dated (USSR), this engaging story, theorized by Americans for decades, covers the POW mystery as well as how Russians are trained to seamlessly infiltrate into all facets of America, including politics. I would be disappointed if there was not the signature wise-cracking male protagonist, and, altougth not as fleshed out as some of his later protagonists, this does not disappoint. A truly fascinating story of tenuous past US-Soviet relations, and how dicey it was being an American diplomat in Moscow. Demille never fails to engage regardless of what decade's political suspense he explores.
This is a great book. Scott Brick's narration is spot on. DeMille has written another book with strong, flawed yet likable characters. Great from beginning to end.
Listened for the longest time hoping it might finally gain some substance....but nope, sorry. If you were a fan of the A-team you might enjoy it....but the characters are totally one dimensional and I appreciate it is an old novel but I was
so turned off but the ignorance and arrogance of the characters that I hoped the bad guys won!!
I had previously enjoyed The Lion by DeMille and Scott Brick as narrator. I'm really disappointed in The Charm School, however. It moves very slowly and dwells too much on description of Moscow and environs. I don't even plan to finish listening. I got as far as the opening chapter in Part 2.
3. It is the outstanding description of the Russian background where actions are taking place in “The Charm School” by Nelson DeMille novel. It feels not like a fiction but a real thing. As a Russian who was born and lived in cities and villages of Russia, I can authenticate this incredible dynamic description of the fictional events of this detective novel. I listened to this audiobook twice. It has become my favorite non-fiction book. Now I am interested in more books by the same author. My passion for audiobooks started with non-fiction. I listen close to 400 audioboks during past 20 years but nowadays you would find me listening to Nelson DeMille novels.
A superbly read book, but not, unfortunately, one of DeMille's best. The constantly repeated political message(s)inherent within the book are so heavy handed as to become almost laughable. Nonetheless, the book does make for a good listen though I could have done very nicely without some of the often overlong and unnecessary (my opinion) bits of philosophy.
I've listened to over 200 books downloaded from Audible, and I would have to say that this is one of the best, from one of the best authors and one of the best narrators. Extremely well written by Mr. DeMille, it kept me riveted until the very end. With Scott Brick reading, you will always know who is talking. His differentiation of characters is excellent.
I did not like the book because it was 90% on a once a time Russia, too much moral discussions and relationships and too little action 10%. I skipped often a couple minutes of on and on going dialogues and did not miss anything.
Our hero shows his moral center by being oh so miffed at truly terrible things done by the U.S.for about... two or three pages. It isn't that I don't believe the CIA has lost its moral compass, it is just that I am sick of having my nose rubbed in it. The author also completely undercuts his action scenes when his characters have long and heart-felt moral explorations of life, love, and politics with the bullets chewing up their shelter. I just did like our believe in our "heroes". A morally exhausting work.