Regular price: $31.50

Membership details Membership details
  • A 30-day trial plus your first audiobook, free.
  • 1 credit/month after trial – good for any book, any price.
  • Easy exchanges – swap any book you don’t love.
  • Keep your audiobooks, even if you cancel.
  • After your trial, Audible is just $14.95/month.
OR
In Cart

Publisher's Summary

John Wells goes undercover in Saudi Arabia in a cutting-edge novel of modern suspense from the #1 New York Times best-selling author.

John Wells may have left the CIA, but it hasn't left him. A mysterious call brings a surprise meeting with the aged monarch of Saudi Arabia, King Abdullah. "My kingdom is on a precipice," he tells Wells. "Powerful factions are plotting against me, and my own family is in danger. I don't know who I can trust, but I'm told I can trust you."

Reluctantly, and with the secret blessing of the CIA, Wells goes undercover; but the more he learns, the more complicated things become, and soon he, too, is unsure whom to trust, in Saudi Arabia or Washington. One thing, however, is clear: If the conspirators prevail, it will mean more than the fall of a monarch-it may be the beginning of the final conflagration between America and Islam.

©2011 Alex Berenson (P)2011 Penguin

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    1,048
  • 4 Stars
    821
  • 3 Stars
    261
  • 2 Stars
    48
  • 1 Stars
    29

Performance

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    1,096
  • 4 Stars
    443
  • 3 Stars
    109
  • 2 Stars
    20
  • 1 Stars
    14

Story

  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 Stars
    834
  • 4 Stars
    601
  • 3 Stars
    189
  • 2 Stars
    35
  • 1 Stars
    17
Sort by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Curses! Islamists foiled again!

There are plenty of good guy American vs Islamist terrorist books out. This one has a fairly unbelievable plot with a few holes but I still found it good for its entertainment value. Thrillers like this are just plain fun to listen to. If you enjoy Tom Clancy, Brad Thor, Vince Flynn, you will likely enjoy this author. The action is pretty much non-stop so you won't want to put it down. Enjoy!

8 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • J
  • 03-21-11

Save my cat John Wells, on please!!!!!

Good fun, recommended in the style of covert spy "read and toss" airplane books. Not particularly believable in any way shape or form, but so what? Pops rights along, good background but at times reads like an action hero story written by wikipedia. Has the pace and form of the movie The Kingdom, which was great. Hmmm, a good portion of this book reads as if it was written while actually watching The Kingdom. And Berenson should bail on trying to write in the love interests in his stories. Why bother, they're thin, pointless and a distraction. "Yes I killed 6 people today, but I love you. Let's have pancakes." Narration and sound is perfectly fine, but Guidall is at times so sonorous that he'll put you right to sleep if you're listening while lying down. Go for it. The Middle East background is reasonably legit, and you'll have a fun listen.

11 of 13 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Gail
  • San Deigo, CA USA
  • 02-26-11

Good Listen

I found this book a little hard getting into this time. I love Berenson and Guidall and will always be a fan. I couldn't give it a high five because some of the story was a little far fetched and it did lag in some areas. I also felt the ending was a bit trite. I loved the Secret Spy much better.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Grabs and holds your interest

As a retired military officer, who spent a year in Vietnam I can attest to the accuracy of this novel. His use of colloquialisms and military routines are dead on. His character painting is vivid and it makes you care about his characters. I couldn't wait to see how the Marines were doing each day as I got my dose of this audio book. It is one of those books that grabs you and holds you throughout. When its over you wish there was more.

17 of 22 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • NOKWISA
  • Garland, Texas, United States
  • 02-15-11

Better Than Faithful

The Action is fair but the story moves and doesnt bog down on you. Guidall is fabulous as usual . His narration made the book more enjoyable for me. I liked this side of the Wells character much better than the brooding, pouty guy in Faithful Spy. I thought a request from the King of the House of Saud was a bit out there but we are reading fiction here.. arent we?? Perhaps I will try another in this series.

9 of 12 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Wayne
  • Matthews, NC
  • 12-21-16

The Prisoner, #11 in the John Wells series,...

....will be released in 6 weeks so I am writing a review of one of the earlier books in the series. Alex Berenson is not among the top tier of espionage thriller writers, but his Wells novels are consistently 4 star or better. This series is unique in that John Wells is a Muslim and a CIA agent deeply involved in the war on terror. Do not compare Alex Berenson to the great Vince Flynn or even to Ben Coes or Mark Greaney because he is simply not at their level, but his books are entertaining. Comparisons to the John Rain series by Barry Eisler and the Jericho Quinn series by Marc Cameron are more apt. The fabulous George Guidall narrates and he always makes a novel better.

5 of 7 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Kelly
  • Colorado Springs
  • 02-27-16

A fun ride. A weak end.

The fifth book in the John Wells series was better than the previous two in many ways. I liked the underlying storyline of this novel. I enjoyed learning a little about the Saudi Royal famil. I enjoyed the various travels by air and seas. But, for me, the key to whether I like a book is always character development. John Wells is a richly developed protagonist. This book let me learn more about his life and his past. I always like when there are bits of story told through flashbacks.

However, I took away one star due to the ending which was horrible. The story fell apart and it left me wanting more - but not in the good way. Bummer. Nevertheless, number six is definitely in my queue.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Louis
  • Pittsburgh, PA, United States
  • 05-15-12

An aging spy torn between peace and vengance

John Wells is an American Muslim and CIA Officer who speaks Arabic. His mind is sharp, but the trauma of old wounds seeps into his muscles and his psyche and slows him, and leads him to act with vengeance, as if compensating for his diminishing strength. Wells leaves a warm bed for this adventure, and the sense of time running out is no clearer than when he speaks to the woman he loves.

In keeping with the nature of a Dickensian serial, the first chapters resolve the last book, and the last chapters preface the new book. Although this is more effective than Daniel Silva's lazy copy-paste introductions and plot-wheel backstories, Berenson's decisions loses power for new readers to revisit the older books.

Wells becomes trapped in Saudi place intrigue, and Berenson creates a sophisticated portrait of the Borgia-like Saudi families and its crumbling patriarch. Wells Muslim beliefs are battered by the Saudi's compromise with thuggish, ignorant Wahabi. Wells race to Mecca is passionate and bittersweet.

During the set pieces, it was impressive to see Wells work with his razor-sharp mind instead of blazing with over-described munitions, as if listening to a teenager describe a naked woman.

The book, like most spy novels these days, is a variant on dystopia, but Berenson carries it with intelligence and insight.

I have listened to a number of George Guidall's recordings, and his voice paints in the colors of warfare: deep green, dark sand, polished black, but lacks the lush quality of a woman or young man. It is the right choice, but not a perfect one.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

The Secret Soldier

This was my first book from Alex Berenson and he now has a new fan. I enjoyed this book as much as any I have ever read and that is saying something. I will read all his books now. Keep'em coming.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

One of the best fictions I've heard in years

A great plot - exciting and satisfying, superbly written and narrated. My only complaint is that it was so short. I have not heard any of the other books in this series but now plan to.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful