Six months after the blood-soaked conclusion of Moscow Rules, Allon is in Umbria, trying to resume his honeymoon with his new wife, Chiara, when a colleague pays him a shocking visit. The man who saved Allon's life in Moscow and was then resettled in England has vanished without a trace. British intelligence is sure he was a double agent all along, and they blame Allon for planting him. To discover the truth and clear his name, Allon must go immediately to London - a decision that will prove to be the most fateful of his career.
In the British capital, he finds himself once more on the front lines of the secret war between East and West, where Russian spies and dissidents engage in the old game of cat and mouse. There, Allon uncovers a much greater conspiracy, a plot by an old enemy to resurrect a network of death, to bring the world to the precipice of a new confrontation, and in order to stop it, he must risk everything: his ties to an organization he has served since his youth, his new marriage . . . even his life.
©2009 Daniel Silva; (P)2009 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
The Defector is more than the most explosive thriller of the summer. It is a searing tale of love, vengeance, and courage created by the writer whom the critics call "the perfect guide to the dangerous forces shaping our world" (Orlando Sentinel)
A really good story, well told. As good as this was, I plan to work my way through all of Mr. Silva's books.
Yes, if the friend is a fan of spy thrillers. Silva's Gabriel Allon series is among the best in the genre.
Gigante's narration is competent and workmanlike but not inspired. Though he does not get in the way of the story, neither does he enhance it much.
Yes and no -- the story certainly held my attention, and I was eager to find out what would happen next, but I can listen to Gigante for only so long before I need a break.
This is another good effort from Daniel Silva. I look forward to the next in the series.
Gabriel Alon and the team do it again. Please keep writing these books. You have a fan here.
Daniel Silva's books are consistenty excellent and the characters are as real and vivid as ever. My only problem with this audio book was the narrator. Aside from the falsetto used for women's voices which was just irritating, the accents were HORRENDOUS. The Russians sounded like Germans... the Israeli's sounded like quasi-Russians... And the pronunciation was painful for both the russian and the hebrew words. I don't expect it to be perfect, but at least comprehensible. Blue and white in Hebrew is Kachol (Ka-Hol) Ve Lavan - narrator pronounced it Catch-all Velevan. There are many more terrible examples but this one aspect severaly impacted my listening pleasure. Perhaps, being a native speaker of all three languages makes me more sensitive to it but I think purchases should be aware nonetheless.
Thought the book was great, but the mispronunciation, particularly of Hebrew names and terms detracted significantly from the enjoyment of the book. Even English and Russian proper names are mispronounced: "Grosvenor" pronounced "Grows-venor"
This narrator reads several of Mr. Silva's books. Why is this poor pronunciation of Israeli & Hebrew names, in particular, allowed over several audiobooks? Surely somebody can provide a pronunciation guide for the narrator.
Having said that, I thought the variety of the male characters voices was quite good. The exceptions were some of the women's voices. Chiara was made to sound like quite a whiner.
With corrected pronunciation, I'm sure the narrator can do a much better (and more easily listened to) job next time.
Silva is a really great writer, and Phil Gigante does a nice job (better than John Lee, I think).
You do not have to have read the last novel, "The Moscow Rules," to enjoy this.
I wish there were more unabridged Silva novels - I've already gone through them all.
I'm a pretty big Daniel Silva fan but, as with all authors, some books are better than others. The Defector has been one of the better ones. It's an enjoyable read/listen. If you've never tried Daniel Silva before, I would recommend reading/listening to The Moscow Rules first as it provides the backstory for The Defector. It will be more enjoyable if you do.
I am finding I need to suspend disbelief more and more with each Daniel Silva novel. Much as I enjoy these novels about Gabriel Allon, Israeli assassin, I'm having trouble believing that a professional killer could possess such romantic inclinations. Of course, I know nothing about the subject, but it seems to me that a person who murders people for a living -- even though he only murders bad guys -- could harbor such a soft, artistic heart inside that hard outer shell. Can a person coldly kill without remorse, and then turn around and grow heartsick about a lost love? I don't know, but I will continue listening to every novel Mr. Silva delivers ... just with a grain of salt on the side.
Lots of exciting action but much violence. It's a little hard to believe that a man, Gabriel Allon, of such cold-blooded violence could be so soft hearted about other things. I guess we all want to believe there is some redeeming values in everyone.
Actor/director/teacher. Split my time between Beijing and Seattle now. Listen to Audible on the subway and while driving or riding my bike.
The publisher's blurb suggesting that Daniel Silva is "worthy of comparison" to LeCarre or Graham Greene is ludicrous. Those two both write deeply challenging and sometimes profound novels which also happen to be exciting stories about espionage. This book (even more than the two others I have read by Silva) is a formulaic thriller driven by a contrived revenge plot in which the characters have all the depth of a mud puddle rapidly drying in the summer sun. Which is to say that, however interesting the art restorer Gabrielle Alon may have been when he was introduced, he has become a cipher devoid of surprises. His every emotional struggle is no more than a contrivance used to ramp up the stakes for the next confrontation. His legendary skills remove him from any real danger of "failure," and we are finally reduced to the role of cheerleaders shaking the pom poms as the body count rises. Tedious.
No more Alon for me. I think I will go back and reread "Smiley's People."
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