By the Sunday Times best-selling author of The Lie.
Forbidden love, intimate betrayal and the devastating power of exposure drive Helen Dunmore's remarkable new title.
London, November 1960: the Cold War is at its height. Spy fever fills the newspapers, and the political establishment knows how and where to bury its secrets.
When a highly sensitive file goes missing, Simon Callington is accused of passing information to the Soviets and arrested.
His wife, Lily, suspects that his imprisonment is part of a cover-up and that more powerful men than Simon will do anything to prevent their own downfall. She knows that she, too, is in danger and must fight to protect her children.
But what she does not realise is that Simon has hidden vital truths about his past and may be found guilty of another crime that carries with it an even greater penalty.
©2016 Helen Dunmore (P)2016 Bolinda
"A marvellous piece of seamless storytelling. A triumph." (Penelope Lively)
I love the last 150 years of history. Bully Pulpit and the Wilson biography absolute best!
This is a "Trapped in driveway book." which means its so compelling you can't get out of your car and turn it off so you just stay in the car listening with heart in mouth.
First rate plotting, characters and history. Couldn't be better. Brava, Helen Dunmore!
Wonderful reader who gets all the accents just right. Brava Emma Fenney!
Good story, but not gripping... Lots of good relationship and character development, but missing more in the spy story, I thought. Loved the narration and voices..
"Heartstopping and addictive"
How mistakes and moral flaws drive people to cover up the truth with disastrous consequences. Wonderfully drawn characters. Great listen....
Very well performed but it didn't make up for what I felt almost lazy writing, in that I felt there could and should have been more twists and turns. It left me wanting
"Average book from a usually impressive writer"
No. If I was to recommend a book by Helen Dunmore this is not the one I would choose. The story is totally predictable and while some of the characters are well delineated others are plain caricatures.
Avoided the clichéd homosexual spy ring and not tried to update The Railway Children.
Refined, breathy, limited.
There are some good things in the book so I was glad to have listened to it but overall it was disappointing.
Why has Audible not released The Siege or The Betrayal by Dunmore? Really impressive books.
The book wasn't the thriller I expected. Second half of book better than first which felt tedious and drawn out.
This is an excellent novel. Dunmore is really good at evoking a feeling and general atmosphere of the period. It is a gripping story and I likechow it moves between the perspectives of different characters.
"A stirring and memorable story"
I am a child of the fifties with memories stirred by this excellent and moving story. What captivated me? The precision of the language, the prejudice, social correctness, political incorrectness, homophobia, sense of family and the expectations placed on young children to care for their siblings and keep the boiler lit for the family's hot water.
Times have changed for the better in so many ways but something has been lost along the way.
I loved this audible.
"Brilliant reading, gripping story"
I would recommend this book because it was engaging, unexpected and gripping. Well written.
The characters were exquisitely drawn and fascinating, and the narrative was tense and exciting.
The narrator was very good at performing as the different characters without excessively doing impressions or using accents - her voice is melodious and very listenable. One of the best audiobook narrators I've heard.
highly listenable and enjoyable story .Good characterisation and evocation of the cold war atmosphere.
"shame about the narration"
this was an excellent story, evoking the cold war of the fifties and doctors in Britain. the echoes of the war and the atmosphere of coming up for air after the war. in fact it's a highly atmospheric book, at times claustrophobic and at others fresh with sea air. It was spoiled some what, b y the bff aeration and mispronounced words. however in general I loved it.
"Enjoyable to the end, but marred by consistent strange pronunciation of "Anstruther""
I found the main character well-rounded, but the rest rather lacklustre. The plot was almost nonexistent, but as the main character was interesting, I persisted and on balance am glad I did.
What did rather spoil my experience was the consistently weird pronunciation of what must be "Anstruther" as "Anstroother". Every time it was mispronounced it grated and snapped me back out of the book. This was unfortunate as the narrator otherwise did an excellent job.
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