Daniel Silva’s first novel is The Unlikely Spy and was a best seller and turned into a motion picture as well, so I was expecting a good read when I picked this book up. Below is my book review of The Unlikely Spy.
Plot: The Allied Invasion of Germany in 1944 is being planned and Hitler is desperate to know where the invasion will take place. Britain has developed a network of false intelligence being sent to Germany including phoney radio transmissions, bogus military bases and paperwork being leaked to Hitler.
Germany has infiltrated Britain with a network of sleeper spies secretly sending information back home on the developments in Britain. Some of the information is real and some is fake and the Abwehr, Germanys counterintelligence network, must decide what to pass on to Hitler in order to prepare for D-Day.
Hitler orders the last of his sleeper spies to infiltrate MI5 and find out where the invasion is taking place. Sleeper spy Catherine Blake is activated.
Meanwhile British Intelligence has recruited a university professor, Alan Vicary, to help prevent real military secrets from getting to Hitler and to make him believe that his network of spies is still operational – even though Britain has shut it down. Vicary is a bit of a bumbling professor, but uses his intelligence to decipher what is happening and goes on the hunt for Catherine Blake.
The question is can Vicary stop Blake, before she finds out the secret and reveals it to Germany?
Review: The story starts out with the unlikely murder of a Suffolk painter and the death of a New York socialite. The first two chapters capture the feel of the late 30s and early 40s as WWII was raging in Europe and people were just coming to grips of what was going on in Germany. Silva slowly brings in each new character without letting the reader really understand how they are all connected. Chapters jump from various places in England to Germany and back again, revealing a bit more of the story in small tidbits.
There are a lot of peripheral characters and it is sometimes hard to keep up with each one, but as the story progresses the characters seem to gel and run smoothly. I found the book very intriguing and was totally involved in the story.
The book is based on true facts about the war mixed with some fiction to create a plot that is exciting, suspenseful and full of mystery and intrigue. Every time you think you know where Silva is taking you, he throws in another twist. Each side is clever and very deceptive, so you don’t feel as if Silva is playing favorites to either the Germans or the Brits. You just do not know who will outsmart whom at the end.
Even though you know how the war turns out, the outcome for the two main characters Blake and Vicary are up in the air until the very last few pages. The climax is well written and suspenseful. I enjoyed Silva’s writing style and the way the story unfolded. If you like stories about WWII, you will find the book interesting. He is not as heavy as Jack Higgins and feels a lot like reading a Ken Follett novel.
I have gone on to read another of his books “The Marching Season”, which I will review later.
About the Author
For anyone who likes war novels with lots of espionage intrigue, you will find The Unlikely Spy a good read. Reading is one of the greatest pleasures in the world. It gives you a chance to use your imagination, expand your horizons and explore other worlds which you may never otherwise get a chance to know. Read a preview of The Unlikely Spy . Just click the book icon athttp://www.aaaproductreviews.com. Let’s Get Ready to Read!