It's not unusual for spies to have secrets, but Henry Hunter has more than most, and after he is stopped by British Intelligence at Croydon airport on the eve of the Second World War, he finds that he has even more. From Switzerland he embarks on a series of increasingly perilous missions into Nazi Germany, all while having to cope with different identities and competing spymasters. In March 1941 in Berlin, haunted by a dark episode from his past, he makes a fateful decision, resulting in a dramatic journey to the Swiss frontier with a shocking outcome. The Swiss Spy is set against the real-life backdrop of the top-secret Nazi plans to invade the Soviet Union. The story paints an authentic picture of life inside wartime Europe: the menacing atmosphere, the ever-present danger, and the constant intrigue of the world of espionage.
©2015 Alex Gerlis (P)2015 Tantor
Second Gerlis novel I have listened to. Enjoyed the first and would rate this even better. Great characters and story line. Hope author continues with this genre. Very well read by the narrator. If you like this genre you should not be disappointed.
There seems to be a growing genre about sympathetic spies or policemen working in Nazi Germany just before the war. The best of this kind are written by Philip Kerr (the Bernie Gunther series) and Alan Furst whose protagonists are complex and developed. Gerlis's man, Henry Hunter is not of such moral and literary caliber nor is Gerlis's writing the equal of a Kerr or Furst. The Swiss Spy, however is a good read. A reluctant spy blackmailed by the British into spying against the Germans he also finds himself working for the Russians.
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A whirlwind tour of a WWII spy based in Switzerland who serves multiple masters (including himself) going into the fray in the heart of Nazi Germany. Many interesting details including the Nazi's own internal surveillance networks. I liked the story for its richness in details but it didn't quite hang together as a cohesive whole for me.
Lots of little historical details that gave the story an air of authenticity.
Steady... competent... bland.
This could make a good movie if tightened up.
Overall an interesting WWII spy story with great details.
A really believable spy yarn with all the warts of WW2 espionage on all sides. Alex Gerlis draws you into this world and you are trapped in it!
The first chapter gave me pause but I carried on. The story just kept improving. By the last page I was ready for more. I will be listing to more of Mr. Gerlis's books.
Characters repeatedly engage in long conversations where the explain EVERYTHING to the person they just met. Aren't they spies? Isn't this life and death? Dear Mr. Gerlis: Please trust us to follow the plot and keep your conversations realistic. Everything else is working for you. The narrator was excellent.
If you like spy stories, you will thoroughly enjoy this book. I have read and/or listened to several books by Alex Gerlis and he is an exceptional writer and storyteller. Buy this one. You will not be disappointed.
Always nice to have new additions to the WWII spy genre, I believe.
Fairly unique story.
Alex Gerlis is a wonderful storyteller and an even better creator of espionage plots. With a great knack for weaving many vivid characters into a web of deception and secrecy, you'd think Gerlis lived some of these stories himself. The Swiss Spy is a great example of the many double agents helping to foil Nazi Germany, while furthering the cause of the Allies. I only wish that Gerlis would have written more novels.
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