I usually avoid both war stories and spy stories. If this book hadn't been selected for my favorite book club I never would have picked it up. It is a great read and I enjoyed every page. The Agent Zig-zag of the title was a double agent the British sent to spy on Germany in WWII. He began his career as a safe-cracker and thief. He was in prison when he was selected as a spy. I don't want to tell you the entire story -- get the book and listen for yourself. This is a true story. Most of the events could be made up. It is excellently written and beautifully read.
I've spent my entire life around the written word - writing it, editing it, teaching it. So, it's no wonder I also love to read it!
Maybe it was the time period (WWII), or the location (Channel Islands), but mostly likely, it is Eddie Chapman himself who makes his story of being a double agent (for England and Germany) so arresting and compelling.
Eddie is little more than a petty criminal with a strong knowledge of how to perform these acts of crime when he is pulled from prison in the Channel Islands (which have been taken over by the Germans) and forced into becoming an agent for them. They like the fact that he's a criminal with a past...it helps them keep him in line.
After months of training, Eddie's first assignment is to go back to England and blow up one of their factories. He parachutes into his homeland and goes directly to the authorities, offering to become an agent for England. After days of questioning by British officers, they accept his offer. Eddie is now an official double agent.
The book goes into detail about the training Eddie received from both countries and explains how good he was at memorizing names, faces and places. We learn about the relationships he had with both the German and British officers. And, we learn plenty about Eddie's personal life -- he was pretty good at charming the ladies.
I found the book -- and, particularly, the subject of the book -- quite fascinating. It was interesting to see the strategizing and behind-the-scenes plotting going on between the two countries. And, it was particularly intriguing to see how this one petty criminal became such a successful double agent.
The narrator was fantastic -- easy to understand and good with the different accents. A real tour de force performance.
I enjoyed this book tremendously.
BOOKS!! SO MANY WONDERFUL BOOKS!!! GO SEAHAWKS! #12thMan
The second half of the book seemed slower than the first half. The use of the passwords: "he he ha", "he he ho:, "FFFFF" etc... seemed a bit overkill.
no, I have not read a book by this author before.
John Lee does a great job telling the story. I recommend Mr. Lee for any book reading.
Yes. Some stories are stranger than fiction. This is one of those stories. Its a great look into a small window of the 22nd World War.
If you enjoy history and espionage, look no further.
Audible Obsessed wishes she had more time for so many audiobooks.
The tittle was very attractive to me, but I don't like books in which the story is narrated all the way through. I like to connect with the author, the narrator and the characters, but here I couldn't find space for that and I just couldn't finish it.
It might have been a good story, but I guess I'll never know
An amazing story that is full of memorable and admirable characters. It's not an action-packed thriller but is compelling in its own way. Anyone who knows the history of WWII and enjoys the stories of real-life conmen should enjoy the book. John Lee is a wonderful narrator.
I loved the story and the fact that it's true. The narrator was very good and the story was compelling. I liked Eddie Chapman very much and can see why others found him so attractive and charismatic.
That a common criminal could also be courageous and patriotic. Eddie Chapman embodied the perfect con man; he convinced the Nazis that he was a true spy for them, at the same time he was spying for England. I didn't want to put the narrative down. I am ready to read Ben MacIntyre's other book, "Operation Mincemeat". He's a compelling story teller.
Yes. He pursues the story chronologically, with tales about each part of Eddie's life, from his jail time in the Isle of Jersey to his time in France and Germany, and so on.
I'm not sure about "moved" me, but I was disillusioned with the M15 for allowing Eddie to be dismissed in so cavalier way after all he did for England.
Wow! This is one of the best books I've come across so far. A "can't stop listening" jewel.
I was searching action/adventure and sampled all the big hit writers Then I found the review on this book and dove in. I tell you folks, truth is better than fiction. Also, there are interviews with Eddie Chapman on youtube and a brief synopsis by the author. This self educated gentleman "crook", who loved to blow up safe's makes me really wonder what this man was made up of. This is the find of the day for me.
Yes, given time to digest the first pass.
The main character, very interesting personality and real too
John Lee is one of my favorite performers; another winner here.
The suspense wasn't so great that I wanted to finish it all in one sitting but parts were seizing.
I listen to books on my long commute.
If you have an interest in World War II and insights into one spy, this is a good book.
I don't tire of John Lee's voice.