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The Paris Diversion

A Novel
Narrated by: Mozhan Marnò
Length: 12 hrs and 7 mins
4 out of 5 stars (149 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

"The most clever plot twist of the year." (Washington Post)

"I nominate Kate Moore, the protagonist of Chris Pavone’s sizzling new thriller The Paris Diversion, for patron saint of working wives and mothers everywhere." (Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review)

"The Paris Diversion is the best espionage novel I’ve read this year. Smart, sophisticated and suspenseful, this is Pavone’s finest novel to date - and that’s saying something." (Harlan Coben, number one New York Times best-selling author of Fool Me Once)

"Deliciously twisty.... This involving work has been skillfully engineered for maximum reader enjoyment." (The Wall Street Journal)

From the New York Times best-selling author of The Expats. Kate Moore is back in a pulse-pounding thriller to discover that a massive terror attack across Paris is not what it seems - and that it involves her family.

American expat Kate Moore drops her kids at the international school, makes her rounds of chores, and meets her husband Dexter at their regular café: a leisurely start to a normal day, St-Germain-des-Prés.

Across the Seine, tech CEO Hunter Forsyth stands on his balcony, wondering why his police escort just departed, and frustrated that his cell service has cut out; Hunter has important calls to make, not all of them technically legal.

And on the nearby rue de Rivoli, Mahmoud Khalid climbs out of an electrician’s van and elbows his way into the crowded courtyard of the world’s largest museum. He sets down his metal briefcase, and removes his windbreaker.

That’s when people start to scream.

Everyone has big plans for the day. Dexter is going to make a small fortune, finally digging himself out of a deep financial hole, via an extremely risky investment. Hunter is going to make a huge fortune, with a major corporate acquisition that will send his company’s stock soaring. Kate has less ambitious plans: preparations for tonight’s dinner party - one of those homemaker obligations she still hasn’t embraced, even after a half-decade of this life - and an uneventful workday at the Paris Substation, the clandestine cadre of operatives that she’s been running, not entirely successfully, increasingly convinced that every day could be the last of her career. But every day is also a fresh chance to prove her own relevance, never more so than during today’s momentous events.

And Mahmoud? He is planning to die today. And he won’t be the only one.

©2019 Chris Pavone (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"I tore through The Paris Diversion, completely caught up in the thrilling story of one remarkable day in Paris. With its twisting, high-stakes plot, all-too-human characters, and unrelenting tension, I couldn’t read it fast enough! I absolutely loved it - highly recommended!" (Shari Lapena, New York Times best-selling author of The Couple Next Door)

“A fast-paced and heartfelt thriller set in the world of espionage and terrorism that echoes the best of John le Carré." (Associated Press)

"Pavone’s timely new thriller spins through 12 hours and multiple voices to a startling conclusion." (BBC Culture)

"Thriller writing at its absolute best. With echoes of Graham Greene and John le Carré, Pavone’s novel accomplishes that rare feat of being both a nonstop adventure ride and a smart, stylish and compelling meditation on family, courage, responsibilities, and the relationships we create, for good and bad, throughout our lives. The Paris Diversion does far more than divert; it grips us from the very beginning and doesn’t let go." (Jeffery Deaver, New York Times best-selling author of The Cutting Edge)

"[A] fast-paced thriller...shelve alongside le Carré, Forsyth, and other masters of foreign intrigue." (Kirkus Reviews)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Terrific addition to this genre! AND in PARIS!

Well done and engrossing. Complex enough to keep one's attention. Love the detailed back-drop of Paris, Venice and Hong Kong with realistic details. Listened all is one day. Characters are believable.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Great plot ruined by politicized writing

This is a great sequence to the Expats, wonderfully performed by Mozhan Marnò. However Chris Pavone goes miles and miles out of his way to make his political views transparent, from overstuffing the story with every single topic available in the progressive agenda to taking shots at Trump. Let's briefly mention some:

- Every male character in this novel is flat, stereotypically stupid and incapable of reasoning, with one exception: the malevolent rich character who of course is a serial harasser, deserving contempt and betrayal of his employees and associates. Pavone's male characters are condemned to mediocrity and failure by design.

- Every major mistake by female characters is explained as a reaction to stereotypical male actions: It's OK for Colette to sell her boss for money because she's been harassed as a woman working in the tech industry. It's OK for Kate to be jealous, unfaithful, self-centered and secretive while demanding total openness from Dexter because Dexter kept one secret before. Pavone's female characters live in a world without consequences.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Love a good Chris Pavone story

I was WAITING for this book... WAITING WAITING.
First off I will say narration is great on this one. Accents, cadence, flow. All of it.

Its been a while since I finished the Expats.. basically since it came out. So a bit of the story had to come to me in moments as the story refers back to certain characters.
I like that this story focuses on Kate, but sometimes I wonder how long Kate and Dexter could have actually stuck it out.
Kate is clever, she's smart. So how come she had no idea what Dexter has been up to....
Lots of little questions but overall a good one.

So what's next?

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Katherine
  • Georgetown, Ontario, Canada
  • 05-26-19

Pretty darn clever

I binge listened to this after preparing by reading the Expats again, 7 years later! I didn't remember much and the reviews suggested they'd be a lot better in order. I'm not sure what to say. I did really like it in terms of complex characters and again, a complicated plan as the main event. It's amazing we care about these people when they really aren't very likable. Most things are turned on their heads in these books, in terms of 'bad guys' and 'good guys' and if the author made it more overtly political, I wouldn't read them. If he has a point of view, I suspect I don't share it. But it is such a light touch, it was acceptable to me. I will be having a look at the author's earlier books. For people who love a lot of action, these might not satisfy as it's really more about intrigue and deception, just as the quote from Houdini at the beginning suggests. The narrator could not be better!!! When one of the female characters was being her absolute worst, she managed to sound just like a loathsome boss I'd once had. She nailed down that low-key, sweet, diabolically controlling voice perfectly.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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Not for me

Despite the fact that I finished it, I didn’t enjoy this book at all.

The more I read, the less I enjoyed it; the style just wasn’t for me. At first I wondered if it was because I completely forgot everything about Book 1, but after a while I just didn’t care either way. There wasn’t enough overall to excite me.

I found that there was WAY too much slogging through the characters thoughts as the events unfolded which slowed the pace to a crawl.

I did like the setting in Paris – that was redeeming!

If there are more books in the series, I’ll pass.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Ok

It’s ok. A diverting read. Could have done with some editing to cut out some of the text that adds nothing to the story line (Kate’s inner thoughts etc). The plot is good. Ending is terrible.

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Michele
  • Santa Clarita, CA, United States
  • 07-17-19

A Story About Relationships - Not a thriller

I had high hopes for this sequel but ultimately was very disappointed. The book was 90% complaining about marriage woes or lusting after a secretary, with only a small amount spent on an actual plot. The narrator was good.

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  • PATRICIA
  • NEWTOWN SQUARE, PA, United States
  • 07-03-19

Great part 2 - anxious for part 3

This story was a continuation of the Expats so I highly recommend experiencing that book first. This story kept up the pace and did a good job with locale and narrative. Very engaging. Great narrator.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Doesn’t hold together very well

Basic premise is a long shot - typical evil business man duped into playing along with phony officials - throw in some cheap shots at our current President- lots of moral reflections about should have, could have, ?? What do we have at the end - a feeling of 11 hours wasted!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Carl
  • West Palm Beach, FL, United States
  • 06-02-19

Chris Pavone Does it Again

Gripping story. Spy stories the way they should be told. Complex, exciting, and one that leaves you thinking about it for days and weeks afterwards. Also his stories are about the people and the drama of daily life. Mix that with the the gray area spies deal with and with the temptations of that can lead any to the "Dark Side" and his stories are a rush.