Andy McNab's sociopathic secret agent, Nick Stone, already made James Bond look like Ralph Nader before Dark Winter, but in DW he goes completely "off the reservation" to jeopardize the lives of millions of Brits to save the hypervulnerable object of his increasingly obsessive devotion, his mentally ill ward Kelly. The second-by-second description of undercover work sounds crushingly authentic as always, but Stone's weirdness strains credibility and left this reader frankly hoping that his ruthless masters would finally pull the plug on this far too rogue warrior - permanently.
The author's research into the life of multimillionaire smuggler Lai Changxing provides the backdrop for what is really a voyage of discovery through what might be called the "Really New China", a nation being transformed by a capitalist revolution from below, led by fearless people like Mr. Lai who both work with and against officialdom in a monumental effort to transform China into a land of (economic) freedom and opportunity. The voyage is made all the more enjoyable by our effortlessly charming and instinctively poetic host, whose almost Shakesperean command of the English language is ideally suited to his epic of praise for the courageous and infintely resourceful Chinese people he so obviously loves.
I don't know if it was the narration or the book itself, but after mamking some initially interesting points the book began to simple drone on and on about things I really didn't care about. Either the story bored the narrator or it was just plain boring. Either was I stopped listening about half way through.
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