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Publisher's Summary

Gabriel Allon, master art restorer and assassin, returns in a spellbinding new novel from the number one New York Times best-selling author.

For Gabriel and his beautiful Venetian-born wife, Chiara, it was supposed to be the start of a pleasant weekend in London - a visit to an art gallery in St. James’s to authenticate a newly discovered painting by Titian, followed by a quiet lunch at an Italian restaurant along the Strand. But a pair of deadly bombings in Paris and Hamburg has already marred this sparkling autumn day. And while walking along Wellington Street, the ever-vigilant Gabriel notices a man whom he believes is about to carry out a third attack. The man is exhibiting several traits common to suicide bombers - traits that Gabriel, one of the world’s most experienced counterterrorism officers, knows all too well.

Armed with a concealed Beretta pistol, he follows the man into the crowded Covent Garden market, determined to prevent the massacre of innocents he fears is about to take place. But before Gabriel can draw his weapon, he is knocked to the pavement by two undercover London police officers. A moment later he looks up to find a scene from his nightmares: bodies and blood, Baghdad on the Thames....

©2012 Daniel Silva (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"Allon is the 21st century Bond - elegantly paced, subtle and well-informed. If you haven’t read Silva before, try Portrait of a Spy - and then go back and read the series." (Daily Mail)
"Sexily brooding Allon…must be the most famous superspy not played by Daniel Craig." (Daily Telegraph)
"Silva builds tension with breathtaking double and triple turns of the plot" (People)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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Excellent performance but far fetched.

The performance by the reader is close to faultless and helps to make the story deeply intriguing and entertaining.
The story itself however, I personally found a little hard to believe. The key points in the plot seemed quite unlikely scenarios. On the whole though, a very entertaining listen

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Not so riveting

This was a bit of a let down...not as captivating overall as the others in the series.

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wonderful book

My second in the series only and another wonderful book - again i will be going back for more.

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  • Stuart C.
  • 07-13-16

Bit wordy in places

Good story with excellent narration by Simon Vance. I found at times there was little action and too much description of people and places although this is necessary. I also found it hard to remember the many characters at times. overall a good story.

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  • annabel
  • 12-04-15

New series to enjoy look forward to it!

An author I did not know before with lots more to discover l loved all the twists and turns a compelling listen

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  • a j green
  • 07-31-15

Excellent

Yet again another really good listen, a gripping story, good plot line and very well read.

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  • Robert Macdonald
  • 11-27-14

First class narration and a good story

What did you like most about Portrait of a Spy?

I bought this book mainly because it was narrated by Simon Vance (from Peter May's novels) and the star rating. I was not disappointed. Vance forever excellent a real artist, and I have found a new series of books. I just hope the other narrators do the series justice.

What did you like best about this story?

Good plot, fast moving and full of intrigue.

What does Simon Vance bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

He brings the characters to life, from the quiet care of Chiara to the irascible old Israeli spy master. Top class!

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I walk the dogs and listen to this book, they're both shattered!

Any additional comments?

Hope the next one is as good.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 08-20-13

Good story, great narration

Would you listen to Portrait of a Spy again? Why?

Probably not - there was nothing remarkable about the story itself. Don't get me wrong, it was a good, solid, thoroughly enjoyable spy thriller but there was nothing in it that made it stand out from the crowd. Or indeed the rest of the Gabriel Allon series. I've read a few in the series and they've all been cut from a similar cloth: pick any one at random and you're guaranteed an entertaining story but I suspect if you were to read them all back-to-back you'd quickly tire of them.

What did you like best about this story?

The narration. Simon Vance is a wonderful voice actor and is a joy to listen to; he really brings the characters to life.

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

"Gabriel Allon has another brush with death"