After narrowly surviving his last operation, Gabriel Allon, the wayward son of Israeli intelligence, has taken refuge behind the walls of the Vatican, where he is restoring one of Caravaggio's greatest masterpieces. But early one morning, he is summoned to St. Peter's Basilica by Monsignor Luigi Donati, the all-powerful private secretary to his Holiness Pope Paul VII. The body of a beautiful woman lies broken beneath Michelangelo's magnificent dome.
The Vatican police suspect suicide, though Gabriel believes otherwise. So, it seems, does Donati. But the monsignor is fearful that a public inquiry might inflict another scandal on the Church, and so he calls upon Gabriel to quietly pursue the truth - with one caveat.
"Rule number one at the Vatican," Donati said. "Don't ask too many questions."
Gabriel learns that the dead woman had uncovered a dangerous secret - a secret that threatens a global criminal enterprise that is looting timeless treasures of antiquity and selling them to the highest bidder. But there is more to this network than just greed. A mysterious operative is plotting an act of sabotage that will plunge the world into a conflict of apocalyptic proportions....
©2012 Daniel Silva (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers
I've read a couple of other books in the Gabriel Allon series and enjoyed them. This mystery started with a death at the Vatican, progressed to a hunt for the killer, and then, ultimately, a resolution to the mystery. But then there is a completely additional challenge for Allon regarding the Pope's visit to Israel. This last part seemed to be tacked on, and, from my perspective, slightly polemic. Just not my favorite book.
Yes I would. The story is fantastic.
Gabriel of course, cool, calm, collected and caring.
He did a fantastic job at bringing the characters to life.
I only discovered Daniel Silva several months ago and promptly listened to every Gabriel Allon book in succession. I'm not at all disappointed with the latest and, despite some familiar elements, the book is strong in every way. It continues to blend contemporary issues, interesting historical information, character and plot extremely effectively. Just when you think you know what it's about, it jumps to a higher level of intrigue. I enjoy George Guidall as a narrator as well and felt he made every character and accent believable. I find myself wanting to learn more about some of what's mentioned in the book and have already hunted for related audiobooks. Except for the fact I want Gabriel to finally take a break and leave the service for good, I would enjoy another book with him as the main character. That being said, whatever Daniel Silva puts his hand to will be terrific, I'm sure. I got the sense that the end of the book might be hinting about the next one and where it might take place...nuff said.
This was my first Silva book...and to be honest, I chose it from the New Releases because the best narrator in the genre (or almost anywhere), George Guidall, read it. I was very pleased with the story and will definitely be checking out more of his stuff over time!
Love how Silva can tie such different plots together in a single coherent story
Quick pace ... Linkages to older stories ... not the same old story line
George Guidall sets the standard for narrators.
Daniel Silva delivers another riveting story with Gabriel Allon who is one of my two favorite protagonists; the other being Oliver Stone of David Baldacci's Camel Club series.
I didn't like the cadence in George Guidall's delivery. I much prefer John Lee and Simon Vance as narrators.
Wish I had had the time to listen in one sitting, I didn't want to stop.
Besides GOOD stories in all the Allon novels, Daniel Silva also provides exceptionally fine insights on the nature of global terrorism and Arab-Israeli issues.
First, I always like to hear George Guidall read a book. This is no exception. As to the book itself, I was drawn to the storyline involving the Vatican and the story started out seeming to go there, but then changed quickly. I think it is a book that really centers on the Israeli / Arab conflict with a decidedly strong point of view that is anti-Arab. I don't disagree with the point of view, but I do think it was not the kind of book that I was expecting. Many would love the book, and although I enjoyed it, it just wasn't what I expected.
This was my first audio book since purchasing my Kindle and looked forward to experiencing this form of "reading" a book. It certainly took a while to get used to this form of "reading" Although I enjoyed it very much I found it a bit slow, however if I was ever unfortunate enough to become incapacitated and couldn't read in the normal way I would highly reccommend audio books and in particular this narrator.
After reading the first 11 books in this series I was becoming disheartened with the cookie cutter story lines, even though the history and thought- provoking information kept me coming back. This 12th book has a story line that is unique and gripping, while keeping the history of Israel at the forefront.
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