Two investigators, a secret policeman and a homicide detective, are assigned to the case. Both believe that their superiors are keeping them in the dark, but they can't figure out why, until they begin to realize that everything is connected to a seven-year-old murder, a seemingly insignificant killing that has had far-reaching consequences.
Politics and history, for which Olen Steinhauer's novels are most praised, turn intimate and highly compelling in this new novel, reminiscent of John le Carre's best.
©2006 Olen Steinhauer; (P)2006 Blackstone Audio Inc.
"Steinhauer again displays his masterful manipulation of character, plot, and reader expectations....A fast, intriguing listen. Highly recommended." (Library Journal)
"Steinhauer's dazzling fourth book...shows how a skilled writer working at the top of his form can keep a series from faltering." (Publishers Weekly)
But I write for myself, for my own pleasure. And I want to be left alone to do it. - J.D. Salinger ^(;,;)^
Steinhauer takes a helluva lot of risks with this novel and almost pulls them off. A hyper-original espionage/crime/revenge thriller set in Steinhauer's imaginary Eastern/Soviet Bloc country (smells like a mix of Hungary and Slovakia). Steinhauer has a genius for characters and he has developed many fantastic ones throughout his 36 Yalta series. IN Liberation Movements he throws a couple huge curves into the series. His two main characters are a gay secret police protégé and a revenge-seeking female homicide detective. This isn't your mother's spy novel.
Liberation Movements is sometimes a bit jumpy and the non-linear, multiple POV, narrative distracts a little from the setting, but again, I love to see Steinhauer experiment with the spy/crime format. Whatever points he loses because of its messiness, he more than makes up for because of his novelty and originality.
The narration, however, is another story. It just didn't gel with me. The multiple (5) narrators is only so-so. It really becomes a tad obnoxious listening to the narration of tape recordings (a little too meta for my taste).
I love books!
If you ever thought about life in the Soviet bloc of nations, and weren't from there, or maybe you were, you most likely thought it was a drab, dreary life. According to Steinhauer, it was for some of them, those that bought into thatbought into that way of thinking or were forced into by the events of life. But, there were plenty of people that had hopes and dreams and lived their lives the best they could, they tried to stay out of the limelight, out of government scrutiny. Many led lives of quiet desperation. I don't knowwhat I expected when I started reading this series by Steinhauer, dreariness I suppose, but Ihave found them all interesting including this one. There were many different levels of liberation the characters were seeking. I hope Audible makes the last book in the series available.
Looked forward to this book but it's very slow. Nothing seems to happen. The multiple performers leads to a disjointed feeling.
I stopped listening after about half the book. That's saying a lot. I've never before stopped an audio book before the end and I rarely stop reading a book before the end.
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