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Night Soldiers Audiobook

Night Soldiers

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Publisher's Summary

Widely recognized as the master of the historical spy novel, New York Times best-selling author Alan Furst takes listeners back to the early days of World War II for a dramatic novel of intrigue and suspense.

Bulgaria, 1934. The local fascists have just murdered the brother of Khristo Stoianev. Now Khristo is recruited into the NKVD, the Soviet secret police, for special service in the Spanish civil war.

©1988 Alan Furst; (P)2002 Recorded Books

What the Critics Say

"Furst shows a remarkable talent in his fifth novel, integrating details about the cultures of Spain, France and Eastern Europe with a fascinating story." (Publishers Weekly)
"Night Soldiers has everything the best thrillers offer, excitement, intrigue, romance, plus grown-up writing, characters that matter, and a crisp, carefully researched portrait of the period in which our own postwar world was shaped." (USA Today)
"Intelligent, ambitious, absorbing....The history is deftly incorporated; the viewpoint civilized; the characters and the settings picturesque; the adventures exciting; the writing pungent." (The New York Times)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.7 (1339 )
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3.7 (1077 )
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4.2 (1070 )
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Performance
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  •  
    susan 06-24-13
    susan 06-24-13
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "couldn't even finish"

    One of the more boring books i've listened to yet (member since 2007, ~350 books)! Came across more like diary entries than anything else: First this happened, then this, etc. Not at all compelling and never kept my interest up for a second. As a result, i didn't even finish listening to this book, an action i have taken maybe 4 or 5 times in the past. Also, and advanced apologies to all you George Guidall fans, the reader in no way enhanced the experience. Though GG is not one of my personal favorite readers, i do listen to a book he reads if the story sounds intriguing/interesting. My recommendation is to skip this book altogether...

    6 of 8 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ted New York, NY, United States 01-01-17
    Ted New York, NY, United States 01-01-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Extremely impressive...if not especially enjoyable"

    In fact, I found most of the characters and events downright unpleasant -- which is why I'm so conflicted, as Furst's writing is astonishingly good: wise, graceful, lyrical... One also comes away with the impression that he writes with absolute authority about the war, spycraft, Balkan history, the Spanish Civil War, Stalin's intelligence service, wartime Paris, rural France, the French Resistance, 1940s Manhattan, refugees, guns, engines, river navigation... I don't know how much here (and presumably in his many later novels) depends upon years of painstaking research and how much is the product of his imagination, but I certainly felt I was learning a great deal about the Second World War (and more than I cared to about the brutal, paranoid, treacherous world of the Soviets), with authentic atmosphere, detail, and background.

    The downside? A rambling, episodic, somewhat hard-to-follow story -- not exactly a plot, really, more a picaresque odyssey with various grim adventures in assorted European locales, and minor characters who are introduced, perform for a while, and then generally disappear forever. The adventures and the new locales and characters keep coming; I was not sorry when the saga finally ended.

    Another drawback (for me): a tough, shrewd main character I found hard to like and impossible to warm to, though one is clearly meant to root for him. He is just too damned wise, savvy, resourceful, and quick-witted to be likable. And others in the novel are too wise as well. In particular, I noticed that every time characters open their mouths, they come out with something too pithily clever and colorful to be believed, speaking in elaborate metaphors, bits of folk wisdom, cynical jests, ruminations on history, etc. They remind me of the colorful minor characters in Preston Sturges comedies; no one ever utters anything dull or unmemorable. Granted, colorful dialogue is to be prized, but these people and their talk become tiresome.

    Despite these reservations, I'll probably end up listening to further novels of Furst's, in part because they seem to offer vivid, realistic glimpses of a world, and an era, that interests me. But the main thing that will likely keep me coming back for more is George Guidall's narration. I don't know how he does it (because I gather veteran readers like him essentially get by with sight reading, encountering a text for the first time as they read it aloud), but he manages to bring drama and intelligence to every line.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Helen 10-24-16
    Helen 10-24-16

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Extremely confusing. Maybe best in print."

    I tried really hard to finish this book, but I just couldn't. I kept spacing out and wasn't able to follow any of it. The story is very slow and the characters kept changing in a way I couldn't follow, so it became boring. I guess if you had time to listen very carefully you'd be fine, but I couldn't enjoy it. Maybe it would be better in print.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    R.T. San Jose, Ca 09-07-16
    R.T. San Jose, Ca 09-07-16 Member Since 2016

    on the trail

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not One Of My Faves"

    I found this story laborious and boring at times. The narrator did a great job with what he had to work with, and his French pronunciations were excellent. There was too much minutiae in this story for me so I can't recommend it as a thriller. It's more of a long, drawn out saga.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert A Austin, TX United States 08-15-16
    Robert A Austin, TX United States 08-15-16 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Best Furst book I've heard"

    I've listened to 5 or 6 of Alan Furst's books and this is the best. Guidall is exceptional as always.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    private 06-26-16
    private 06-26-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not very intersting"

    I bought this book because another reviewer likened it to a John Le Carre spy novel. It is nothing like Le Carre, the characters are not at all complex the situation is never equivocal. Maybe if I'd been expecting an action story I'd have liked it more but I expected a really smart really human story and I didn't get that at all.
    Other people also seemed to really like the narrator and I found him dull and flat.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    fk6400 06-19-16
    fk6400 06-19-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Some historical facts are not correect"
    Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

    Soviet car "Pobeda" (victory) was only introduced in 1945, after end of the war, and it's name emphasized victory in WW2, even with all power of NKVD it was impossible to use in 1930sRussian (Orthodox) christmas (even in USSR it wasn't a holiday) is celebrated on January 7th, not in December.


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CHARLES 06-18-16
    CHARLES 06-18-16
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Espionage, Eastern Europe, Rich Prose, Grand Sweep"
    What made the experience of listening to Night Soldiers the most enjoyable?

    I bought this and a number of other books by Alan Furst when Audible had a sale. What a pleasant surprise. I wish I had bought them all.
    I like spy stories. If you like John LaCarre, You will enjoy this.
    Thanks Audible


    Which character – as performed by George Guidall – was your favorite?

    Fine narration


    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ben Jurevicius 06-16-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Another outstanding tale"

    It is difficult to describe how excellent this book is. It absolutely swept me away to another time and place. And the narration was pure perfection.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    D. A. Lewis 06-16-16
    D. A. Lewis 06-16-16 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
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    "Not a good audio book"

    Too many characters to follow I an audio book. If I was reading this book I would have reread many sections to catch up and that would have been okay. Not so with an audiobook. Nice spy world but far too dense for me for a audiobook.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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