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Publisher's Summary

It's a deadly dilemma for Martin Odum: both remembering and forgetting his past are dangerous options. A discharged CIA agent turned private detective, Odum is struggling through a labyrinth of memories from past identities, "legends", in CIA parlance. Is he really Martin Odum? Or is he Dante Pippen, IRA explosives specialist? Or Lincoln Dittmann, Civil War expert? Or another, hidden legend?

When Stella Kastner asks Odum to find her missing brother-in-law, Odum's ex-boss from the CIA shows up to order him off the case. Odum takes it anyway, embarking on a search that leads him around the world battling mortal danger and psychological disorientation.

©2005 Robert Littell; (P)2005 The Audio Partners

Critic Reviews

"Wonderful writing and a great sense of fun make this another winner." (Publishers Weekly)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings


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  • Overall

Outstanding Reading

I have listened to all of the author's books including the 40 hour Company. Along the way, I developed a true fondness for both the author and Scott Brick who was the reader on the previous books. However, the interpretation by Grover Gardner on this one was truly exceptional and fit beautifully with this almost tongue-in-cheek spy vs. spy book. Jumping among time periods and locations and following a lead character who keeps changing "Legends" does require a little effort, but it is an effort well worth it. It is certain not a formula production.

18 of 18 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Richard
  • Bentonville, AR, USA
  • 09-16-05

Excellent Story

While it took some convincing after a rather graphic and horrific first 5 minutes for my wife to let the story continue on our 20 hour car trip, she soon was completely captivated, as was I.

The rich detail of the characters, the complex plot of interwoven threads and the vivid insight into another world all proved masterfully done in this novel.

I would highly recommend this book and it certainly made the long car trip fly by.

11 of 11 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
  • Deborah
  • shallotte, NC, United States
  • 03-10-06

LeCarre's Younger Brother

This was a fascinating book. I've read LeCarre's earlier books (he's too political now)many times and Littell steps in where LeCarre went astray in politics. A good old-fashioned spy thriller that keeps you guessing til the last page. However, this might be a book that is easier read. There were several times I wished I could page back to double-check something that contributed to what was currently happening. It's a very complicated, complex puzzle of a book that is well worth spending a credit on. And, because it is so multilayered, it's worth a second listen to see how many clues were given that were missed by the reader, how the story weaves together (after knowing the ending), and just to revel in the excellence of the writing. Again... like the Smiley books by LeCarre.

If you are looking for an easy read, this isn't it. But if you like feints, mind tricks, etc., you'll love this book.

6 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall


Legends is great because of the quality of research, writing and characters. The narration was excellent with multiple voices and accents as well as perfect pronunciation of names and places. This was a thoroughly entertaining book - complex and very rich. I have listened to all of Littell's titles and recommend this one very highly.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Very Good

Story was entertaining and flowed well. Another good story from Robert Littell and the narrator was excellent. I enjoy Scott Bricks narrations but Grover Gardner far surpassed him. If you like Littell's book, then you won't be disappointed with this one. Enjoy!

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Loved listening to this unfold

I loved how all the elements in this book wove together. I'm not always sure about Grover Gardner's reading. He can be great, like this time, or boring. I could see the lovers as he read and could hear all the layers of meaning as they talked. Nice work. That said, I would not recommend this to a friend who finds lots of names and complex situations hard to listen to. For me, the surprises as old stories affected new circumstances was delicious.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Littell does it again

The first Robert Littell book I read was the Company which is a spectacular book. I read some of his other books afterwards and they were good but not like the company. Legends is AWESOME! It is as good if not bette than the Company. Great story with twists and turns. Finished it in 3 days and wished it wasn't over, which to me is a sign of a GREAT book.

7 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall


As another reviewer noted, this is fun stuff. The reader should engage in funseeking rather than typical spy gazing so as to enjoy it along with the author whose name has, by some coicidence, two "T's"and two "L's",similar to the doubling of letters in his Legends' names.
Masterfully read

24 of 30 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Really complex mystery! Great read!

Littell writes incredibly complex story lines and this one even for him, is an enigma wrapped around half a dozen puzzles. I loved it from start to finish. There are multiple stories inside stories inside stories. Makes your brain itch. Great book!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

So boring I couldn't finish

I have listened to at least 100 books from Audible. My favorites being mystery/thrillers. My favorite authors are Michael Connelly, Tana French, Laura Lippman, Gregg Hurwitz, and David Rosenfelt. I have never NOT finished a book. At 4.5 hours into this one I am bailing out. I am so bored with all that is NOT happening. There have been a few short exciting scenes but they are followed by speculation, overly descriptive dialog and a list of names and places that become very difficult to keep up with. I love Grover Gardner but I just can't do Littell.

6 of 8 people found this review helpful