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17 July 2013

Daniel Silva: The English Girl

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Another great Gabriel Allon adventure
Gabriel Allon is a unique fictional character who has had an violent career as a star Mossad agent, assassin, and spy. He has "retired" to his home in Israel to continue his career as a world renowned art restorer.

Madeline Hart is young, beautiful, intelligent and is being groomed for a "solar flare" bright future in the British government. When she is on vacation in Corsica with friends, Madeline disappears and there are no clues as to what has happened and most people think she has been killed. Some days later a mysterious package is delivered to a top aide to the UK Prime Minister with a clear message that Madeleine has been kidnapped and will be killed in 7 days.

The message also makes it clear that the kidnappers know her biggest secret - she is having an affair with the Prime Minister, Jonathan Lancaster. Because of the implications to his career and his country, Lancaster asks one of his close intelligence advisors to find a person with the skills and discretion to handle his interests privately without police or government assistance. The advisor asks Gabriel Allon for help in finding and rescuing Madeline. The advisor is one of the few people in the world who could make Allon consider leaving his retirement.

Under terms of complete confidentiality Gabriel accepts the mission which, as usual, catapults him back into a world of violence and to places where he has many enemies. This is classic Gabriel Allon, operating both on his own and with his team of key Mossad operators, and all the time coping with the dominating and irascible Ali Shamron. This time Gabriel recruits a couple of key people to help him - and both of them have tried to kill him in the past. The action rockets from Israel to Corsica, France, London, Denmark, Moscow, and St Petersburg - and as usual nothing is as it seems and the truth is full of surprises.

After around 14 books in the Gabriel Allon series you could expect that Daniel Silva is running out of steam. This is certainly not the case with this book which is totally up-to-date, and is as much a page-turner, with a crunching ending just as good as his previous books. Highly recommended - put aside some quality time as you won't want to put this book down to the very end.

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