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The Faithful Spy Audiobook

The Faithful Spy

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: Thanks to Robertson Dean's menacing narration, this gripping, thinking-person's thriller about a CIA operative deep undercover in al Qaeda is frighteningly real. Once you start listening, you'll find yourself sitting in the driveway with the engine still running. —Steve Feldberg

Publisher's Summary

John Wells is the only American CIA agent ever to penetrate al Qaeda. Since before the attacks in 2001, Wells has been hiding in the mountains of Pakistan, biding his time, building his cover.

Now, on the orders of Omar Khadri, the malicious mastermind plotting more al Qaeda strikes on America, Wells is coming home. Neither Khadri nor Jennifer Exley, Wells' superior at Langley, knows quite what to expect.

For Wells has changed during his years in the mountains. He has become a Muslim. He finds the United States decadent and shallow. Yet he hates al Qaeda and the way it uses Islam to justify its murderous assaults on innocents. He is a man alone, and the CIA, still reeling from its failure to predict 9/11 or find weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, does not know whether to trust him. Among his handlers at Langley, only Exley believes in him, and even she sometimes wonders. And so the agency freezes Wells out, preferring to rely on high-tech means for gathering intelligence.

But as that strategy fails and Khadri moves closer to unleashing the most devastating terrorist attack in history, Wells and Exley must somehow find a way to stop him, with or without the government's consent.

From secret American military bases where suspects are held and "interrogated" to basement laboratories where al Qaeda's scientists grow the deadliest of biological weapons, The Faithful Spy is a riveting and cautionary tale, as affecting in its personal stories as it is sophisticated in its political details. The first spy thriller to grapple squarely with the complexities and terrors of today's world, this is a uniquely exciting and unnerving novel by an author who truly knows his territory.

©2006 Alex Berenson; (P)2006 Books on Tape

What the Critics Say

  • Mystery Writers of America 2007 Edgar Award, Best First Novel by an American Author

"Graphic and chillingly real." (Publishers Weekly)
"One could hardly ask for a more skillful, timely, and well-rounded translation of our worst fears into satisfying thrills." (Booklist)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (4825 )
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4.3 (3251 )
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1 star
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Barbara O. 02-09-15
    Barbara O. 02-09-15 Member Since 2010
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
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    "The Faithful Spy at disappointment"
    What disappointed you about The Faithful Spy?

    Story never peaked my interest. Very slow. Couldn't really get excited about John Wells. Don't think I will "read" another by Alex Berensen.


    What do you think your next listen will be?

    Going back to Scot Horvath by Brad Thor.


    What three words best describe Robertson Dean’s performance?

    Lack excitement.


    What character would you cut from The Faithful Spy?

    None of the characters would entice me to another listen.


    Any additional comments?

    I listen to a lot of books on tape. I think in the last five years I have only requested a refund for 1 or 2 books. Unfortunately, this is one book for which I will request a replacement.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathryn 02-07-14
    Kathryn 02-07-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Great story, New perspective, & Oh so Satisfing"

    The characters are great. I love the way we get to know them slowly as the novel progresses. I love the mental debates that illustrate personal struggles. And I especially enjoyed the different perspective. There is action but also mental stimulation. The novel satisfies on so many levels.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Share 6803 Day St.Tujunga, CA, 91042 05-10-12
    David Share 6803 Day St.Tujunga, CA, 91042 05-10-12 Member Since 2009

    Book Fan

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Faithful Spy"

    I really enjoyed this book. The narrator was a perfect match for the book although I'm not familiar with him otherwise. If you are a Vince Flynn fan then you almost certainly really like this book.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    C. A. Gelsinger 03-23-12

    Nolly

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "I Can't Believe I Loved This Book"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I have recommended this book to friends, but I talk about books all the time. I particularly like John Wells' story. He's doing his job, but he sees both sides of his undercover coin, and he's conflicted. The author worked diligently to keep John's character true to form; he's conflicted all over the place, but he ultimately knows who he is and where his loyalties are best served.

    I am now on the third volume of the series and am still as attached to John and Exley's story as I was at the start.


    What other book might you compare The Faithful Spy to and why?

    You might try The Accident Man for something similar; can't remember the author, but I liked that work also. The Accident Man takes an actual event and spins fiction around it, but convincingly so.


    What about Robertson Dean???s performance did you like?

    Robertson Dean gave a good performance with clear, understandable reading, nice emphasis to important parts and no words glaringly misprononced.

    Off topic, but sometimes I wonder if readers have access to a dictionary or check back with the author for tips on how certain words should be read. I once heard a reader pronounce the FBI headquarters as


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

    What a question ... the beauty of a book, even a recorded one, is that I can put it down and take it up again. If all I had to do was read, that would be lovely, but life intrudes.


    Any additional comments?

    Try The Faithful Spy. It's a good story.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Thomas 09-19-11
    Thomas 09-19-11 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A rotten book"

    The book is poorly written and poorly read. I hung on until the end thinking that the book had to have some redeeming feature. I was wrong. I love spy and espionage novels that are clever and suspenseful. This book had glimpses of cleverness, but they were few and far between. What appeal the characters had, was destroyed by the reader, who seemed to have a sneer on his face throughout. Don't waste your time.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J 03-08-11
    J 03-08-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Really enjoyed this, recommended"

    Timely, plenty of action, plausible at times, sometimes not, sometimes the implausible is so on the money it is hard to discount. Has some of the nuances, plot depth and character development of the old Smiley stuff...kind of a modern blend of Le Carr?? and Alister McClean. Avoids the techno-babble and thin characters of most current spy/adventurers. Great fun.

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Bob Livingston, MT, United States 02-26-11
    Bob Livingston, MT, United States 02-26-11 Member Since 2017
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
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    5
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    "Wow"

    I've been a big fan of Vince Flynn for a long time and was looking for something similar when I found this book I was just thrilled. It's a fast moving story with action and great characters. It's been a long time since I cheered out loud while listening to a book. The narrator is OK, but was glad to see George Guidall narrates the rest of the series. Truly awesome.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Robert SOUTH PASADENA, CA, United States 02-16-11
    Robert SOUTH PASADENA, CA, United States 02-16-11 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "A GOOD spy thriller!"

    I enjoyed this book very much. It's exactly what I was looking for, a good spy thriller with lot's of action ... Something to take my mind off reality. Like watching "24" ... Not "HIGH ART", but fun and bloody spy action! If an escape is what you're after, look no further! I'm anxious to see how his others are.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Reinette Richmond, BC 01-12-11
    Reinette Richmond, BC 01-12-11
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Not bad, but not good either."

    I like espionage thrillers and read all of Vince Flynn's books, who incidently recommended this book. All I can say is that he can learn from Flynn as how to keep suspense going. I could not stop listening to the Flynn series, and it took me about two weeks to finish this one as I lost interest along the way. The narrator was just OK.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MR 09-17-10
    MR 09-17-10

    Matt Heenan

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    "Sorry, just don't get it."

    Long gone is the Afghanistan war where good and evil was clear.

    Set 3 months after 9/11 this novel dates badly.

    Although well written (hence 2 stars) 'The Faithful Spy' is a cynical exploitation of American patriotism of a bygone era and should come with a health warning... 'Not for consumption in the real world'.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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