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The Faithful Spy Audiobook

The Faithful Spy

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: Thanks to Robertson Dean's menacing narration, this gripping, thinking-person's thriller about a CIA operative deep undercover in al Qaeda is frighteningly real. Once you start listening, you'll find yourself sitting in the driveway with the engine still running. —Steve Feldberg

Publisher's Summary

John Wells is the only American CIA agent ever to penetrate al Qaeda. Since before the attacks in 2001, Wells has been hiding in the mountains of Pakistan, biding his time, building his cover.

Now, on the orders of Omar Khadri, the malicious mastermind plotting more al Qaeda strikes on America, Wells is coming home. Neither Khadri nor Jennifer Exley, Wells' superior at Langley, knows quite what to expect.

For Wells has changed during his years in the mountains. He has become a Muslim. He finds the United States decadent and shallow. Yet he hates al Qaeda and the way it uses Islam to justify its murderous assaults on innocents. He is a man alone, and the CIA, still reeling from its failure to predict 9/11 or find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, does not know whether to trust him. Among his handlers at Langley, only Exley believes in him, and even she sometimes wonders. And so the agency freezes Wells out, preferring to rely on high-tech means for gathering intelligence.

But as that strategy fails and Khadri moves closer to unleashing the most devastating terrorist attack in history, Wells and Exley must somehow find a way to stop him, with or without the government's consent.

From secret American military bases where suspects are held and "interrogated" to basement laboratories where al Qaeda's scientists grow the deadliest of biological weapons, The Faithful Spy is a riveting and cautionary tale, as affecting in its personal stories as it is sophisticated in its political details. The first spy thriller to grapple squarely with the complexities and terrors of today's world, this is a uniquely exciting and unnerving novel by an author who truly knows his territory.

©2006 Alex Berenson; (P)2006 Books on Tape

What the Critics Say

  • Mystery Writers of America 2007 Edgar Award, Best First Novel by an American Author

"Graphic and chillingly real." (Publishers Weekly)
"One could hardly ask for a more skillful, timely, and well-rounded translation of our worst fears into satisfying thrills." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (4586 )
5 star
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4.2 (3016 )
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4.3 (3040 )
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3 star
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 01-14-11
    Charles Atkinson Greensboro, NC, United States 01-14-11 Member Since 2015

    Dept Q, Harry Hole... where are you?

    HELPFUL VOTES
    5402
    ratings
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    737
    460
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    1683
    11
    Overall
    "Great Spy Character, Great Story"

    I was thrilled with this purchase. It is a uniquely thorough look at a veteran spy, the toll his work takes on him, and how his past allows him to react to the present. And he is no super hero either. Most of all it a terrific suspense novel.

    9 of 11 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken Draeger SCOTTSDALE, AZ, US 02-21-16
    Ken Draeger SCOTTSDALE, AZ, US 02-21-16 Member Since 2016

    I'm an avid listener always searching for another good book and willing to share my thoughts with a pithy review.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    225
    ratings
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    114
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    3
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    Performance
    Story
    "Contemporary, relevant and entertaining"
    If you could sum up The Faithful Spy in three words, what would they be?

    I enjoyed the mystery, intrigue and the pace.


    Any additional comments?

    The concept of a US spy carrying a Koran around with him and struggling with his faith issues while he was fighting Islamic terrorism was unexpected and yet believable. It brings to light one of the major issues confronting modernity in many countries. Do we dare embrace Islam without compromising our value systems?

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Andy 03-10-08
    Andy 03-10-08 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    92
    ratings
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    215
    23
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    FOLLOWING
    1
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    Overall
    "Top notch spy story"

    it's difficult to write contemporary spy thrillers and have them be believable and entertaining at the same time but this author succeeds. the reader isn't the best in Audible but he's very good.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Victoria Greensboro, NC, USA 07-21-07
    Victoria Greensboro, NC, USA 07-21-07 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
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    26
    3
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    Overall
    "OK, but"

    I like action, and this book, though well written, didn't have much. All the character analysis and history add nothing. Could be cut by 75% and not lose the plot.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bob 02-11-13
    Bob 02-11-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    ratings
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    268
    33
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    Performance
    Story
    "Delayed and Delayed Satisfaction then Irritation"

    I waited 9.5 hours of the 12 hour book for any action. This is no Tom Clancy novel. While your normal spy or action novel has vignettes that you can't quite piece together by design until late in the novel, this one took far too long for my tastes to start coming into focus.

    There are 6 novels in this series and based on my lack of enjoyment on novel 1, I'll happily use my credits for something else. John Wells might be an okay character, but not interesting enough for me to delve into this series.

    Jo Nesbo's novels are far more interesting and action packed. Ditto for Jussi Adler-Olsen novels.

    I enjoyed the narrator's pace, expressions and intonations so I'll happily enjoy his performances on another author's work.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    John 04-13-10
    John 04-13-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    302
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    284
    165
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    FOLLOWING
    35
    1
    Overall
    "Great listen!"

    Easily a 5 star book. Looking forward to the next in the series of John Wells. High action and great character building. Narration is excellent.

    4 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Johnnie Walker Blaine, WA 06-13-06
    Johnnie Walker Blaine, WA 06-13-06 Member Since 2016

    Black

    HELPFUL VOTES
    745
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    376
    84
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    45
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    Overall
    "Come to Bed!"

    I recommended this book to my husband, e.g., nagged him until he started it. Unfortunately, he started the first download at 11:00 last night and finished it before coming to bed. He was still sleeping when I left for work at 8:00. It is that kind of book. It caught me off guard more than once and not many books can do that. Strongly recommend for anyone who appreciates a good story and an excellent reader.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kindle Customer Washington, DC 05-21-10
    Kindle Customer Washington, DC 05-21-10 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    21
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    74
    26
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    2
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    Overall
    "Faithful Spy (Unabridged)"

    I took a chance on this book because of the brief narrative and ended up truly enjoying the book all because of the narrator Robertson Dean. He made the book truly worth listening to. He gave the book a heart and soul. I so enjoyed his reading that I have been searching for other books that he has narrated.

    6 of 9 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nick Seattle, WA, USA 10-17-07
    Nick Seattle, WA, USA 10-17-07
    HELPFUL VOTES
    21
    ratings
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    3
    1
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    Overall
    "Somewhat disappointing"

    Most reviews of this novel suggest that it's better than basic genre fiction. Maybe there's a rewarding story in there somewhere, but it's delivered in such a long string of cliches that I just lost heart. The dialogue and character introspection are perfunctory; the prose is serviceable but nothing more. Current events and vague flag-waving don't make a compelling spy novel. Guess I don't quite get why this book is so popular...

    21 of 30 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sumner Stewartmagee 03-22-16

    SumnerSm

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2
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    84
    4
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    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent"

    I could feel Pakistan smell it and taste it good plot good action real characters and an eexcellent understanding of the CIA
    Sumner

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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