This was my first Gabrielle Allon novel (#13 in the series), but Silva does a good job on-boarding a new reader. I read the book while Vladimir Putin was asserting Russian dominance through the imagery at the Sochi Olympics and the annexation of the Crimea, so the motivations in the book made some eerie sense. I am also a fan of Corsica, and found those settings and characteristics quite realistic.
The story is interesting and twists and turns at just the right times.
I found the portrayal of Israel as the epicenter of virtue and competence a little much - especially when the British government was portrayed as weak and corrupt. I also thought the female characters were stereotypical and largely background;even when Allon's wife is clearly a competent agent, she spends her limited time in the novel cooking for a bunch of men and hoping to get pregnant. There is an old Corsican fortune teller who's an interesting female character, but even her power is undermined by Allon's seeming ability to be the exception to her clear visions.
It is hard to separate this book from the others in the Gabriel Allon series, because they continue to get better as you get deeper into the series.. I have read or listened to all of them and they continue to build off of each other, and introduce and re-introduce an enormous number of characters all with a very well though out and researched back story. Me and my wife will spend our retirement visiting many of the places I have listened to Gabriel carry out so many of his clandestine operations.
HE'S A FINE NARRATOR... THE BOOK WAS TOO LONG AND FULL OF REPITITON...
LOVE ALL THESE BOOKS... FIRST TIME I FELT GROGGY EACH TIME I TURNED IT ON...
Yes. The reader is wonderful and very compelling. The writing is superb, many little twists and nuances.
This book, number 13 in a series, was the first 1 I listened to. It was so good that I've gone back and started with the first book and am working my way forward.
The characters as well written. The story is action packed. I didn't want to stop listening.
The reader, George Guidall, was excellent. He even got the Hebrew names pronounced correctly.
I highly recommend this book and this series.
Say something about yourself!
More action. It was far too slow and detailed in unnecessary areas.
No. Just disappointed in Silva this time.
Average, lacking character
I hope Silva's next novel is up to his previous ones.
I like this book. I like to listen to books in order of publication. Most authors build on their previous work. My brother talked me into listening this one out of order. He said it followed the English Assassin. Silva does build on his previous work and he did make reference to books between The English Assassin and The English Girl but it didn't get in the way.
Silva gave this book a very nice twist. Half way through I thought where in the world is he going with this one. Then he showed us. Nice job.
Daniel Silva shines, as always. Unfortunately, the reading does not flow,as if George Guidall must insert a comma after every phrase... ruins the reading. Oh sure, if he reads another Silva book, I'll listen, but I will not enjoy it as much. OTOH, his characterizations of Russians and other nationals seem good, considering I've never heard Russians speak in a loud voice--they always seem to mumble--nor have I heard a Marseilles patois..
It had a good plot and a satisfactory ending. I had never read any of Silva's books and knew nothing of his main character. Silva managed catch-up from past novels without belaboring it. Quite satisfying, though it did blog down for a few chapters.
A good narrator always places the reader at each scene. I was not disappointed. Guidall doesn't do female voices well. The ladies sounded similar, yet it wasn't too distracting.
Professor, Ohio State University
This book was written to the same high standards of tension, motivation and geopolitical inseight as all the other novels in the series. The twist on modern Russia as an ruthless player in economic warfare was intriguing and plausible. Well worth your credit!