Haunted by his failure to stop a suicide bomber in London, Gabriel Allon is summoned to Washington and drawn into a confrontation with the new face of global terror. At the center of the threat is an American-born cleric in Yemen who was once a paid CIA asset.
Gabriel and his team devise a daring plan to destroy the network of death - from the inside - a gambit fraught with risk, both personal and professional. To succeed, Gabriel must reach into his violent past. A woman waits there, a reclusive heiress and art collector who can traverse the murky divide between Islam and the West. She is the daughter of an old enemy, and together they form an unlikely and dangerous bond.
Set against the disparate worlds of art and intelligence, Portrait of a Spy moves swiftly from the corridors of power in Washington to the glamorous auction houses of New York and London to the unforgiving landscape of the Saudi desert. Featuring a climax that will leave listeners haunted long after the final words, this deeply entertaining story is also a breathtaking portrait of courage in the face of unspeakable evil - and Daniel Silva's most extraordinary novel to date.
©2011 Daniel Silva (P)2011 HarperCollins Publishers
This is not your best work. I found the story to be rather dull and slow.
I found the reader to sound alot like the Count from Sesame Street at times. Really like Paul's reading on earlier books.
While I have listened to all of Daniel Silva's books in this series, this will be the last. I no longer appreciate what has become a tiresome, condescending attitude that Israel must always save the US from itself. In addition, Gabriel is apparently too old and tired of his position to continue; at least that's the way the book comes off. I give it two stars in deference to my appreciation of the characters as they were.
As to the narrator, I love Simon Vance and listen to him whenever possible.
I was hoping for a fast paced thriller. Instead after 3 hours I had to give up. This is a pro-Israeli propaganda speech thinly disguised as a spy novel. If I want to read political opinion, I will read non fiction. Boring and offensive.
The narrative is wonderful as all Baldacci books are... but the recording is way too heavy on the sound effects which made certain parts seem trite. Dialling them down would have lead to a 5/5 review.
As usual, Silva has a great plot. The use of a feminist Arab who gives her life for an Israeli spy is genius. However, in my view, the story is ruined by being read by someone with a British accent, which, with the various Brit pronunciations, continually breaks your concentration and story flow.
In addition, the use of boilerplate info on all the characters associated with the hero is... useless. I just heard it in a prior book, and since I have read all prior books in this series... I know the characters well. There should be a way to skip pointless parts of a book.
I hope Silva is hard at work on his next book--about the Arab Spring?
Loved the book, as I do all Daniel Silva novels. The narration was disappointing. For instance, it makes the CIA analyst Adrian Carter sound like Eeyore on the old Winnie-the-Pooh books. And the narration for Gabriel Allon lacks the depth of pathos rightly brought to the character by Phil Gigante.
There are no listener reviews for this title yet.
Report Inappropriate Content