Gabriel Allon must tread delicately while learning about the history of a beautiful painting if he wants to rip apart a pretty picture of the past, painted by greedy men and countries. The better to deceive you, my dear.
Daniel Silva will break your heart while he reveals the world's past, but he will also show you beauty and healing in unexpected places. His books are at the top of my Must-Read (or listen) list.
I've read (listened) to a number of Silva's books, and find he has a framework (that is repeated in each story) on which he hangs another storyline.
Frankly, it's getting boring.
The author continues to amaze me with his ability to weave a story. I absolutely cannot get enough of Gabriel Alon. Each story in this series is as good as the next. Highly recommend this book.
This was a really enjoyable book. I am working my way through the Allon Series and it was refreshing to get back to art, AND to have the story traverse Nazi Germany again.
Well written with multiple story peaks. I binged this one!
People say I resemble my dog (and vice-versa). He can hear sounds I can't hear, but I'm the one who listens to audiobooks.
Gabriel Allon has once again attempted to retire from his position as Israel's foremost spy, but every time he tries to get out, they pull him back in. As in the past ("The Heist"), a stolen painting is the lure, but the plot pivots to Middle Eastern politics (Iran's nuclear ambitions). As in other Allon affairs, he has to send a woman in to do the inside work, then he has to go in and save her.
I've only read three Silva-Allon titles, but this is a recurring formula. The first two didn't work -- in The Heist, Allon proved to be the worst spy ever and Silva proved to be a lazy writer, his poorly constructed plot full of more holes than the Albert Hall. But this affair works. Allon accomplishes his mission(s) this time, though not in the predictable manner of cookie cutter espionage thrillers, and Silva does some good work as a writer.
Most satisfyingly, Silva incorporates research into interesting real life history -- Nazi looting of art, Dutch collaboration, a personal story similar to Anne Frank (diverging in important ways), Nazis hiding in South America, collaboration of Swiss bankers with Nazis, and present-day collaboration of European financiers and industrialists with Iran in their pursuit of nuclear weapons.
There is also an examination of how the sins of the father may be visited upon the son (or vice versa) and how people of different character react differently to learning about the flaws of their forebears. No coincidence that a character invokes that well-known biblical aphorism, and that the book concludes with Allon reverentially invoking the term "Abba", the Hebrew word for father.
I love the last 150 years of history. Bully Pulpit and the Wilson biography absolute best!
This story has a very interesting part about stolen Nazi art. It also has a big fat violent part that isn't believable.
The narrator is melodramatic in his delivery and does very bad English accents.
j love allon his mix of bad ass vs restorer what a good cover for a spy as always the characters are very interesting and well thought out , look foward to the next one
Great storytelling, woven with historical references, avoiding many cliches of the spy genre. I am reading through the series in order, and it keeps getting better