Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Red Sparrow

Red Sparrow
by Jason Matthews

Read: July 2013
Published: June 2013
Simon & Schuster Audio

"In present-day Russia, ruled by blue-eyed, unblinking President Vladimir Putin, Russian intelligence officer Dominika Egorova struggles to survive in the post-Soviet intelligence jungle. Ordered against her will to become a “Sparrow,” a trained seductress, Dominika is assigned to operate against Nathaniel Nash, a young CIA officer who handles the Agency’s most important Russian mole.
As the action careens between Russia, Finland, Greece, Italy, and the United States, Dominika and Nate soon collide in a duel of wills, tradecraft, and—inevitably—forbidden passion that threatens not just their lives but those of others as well. As secret allegiances are made and broken, Dominika and Nate’s game reaches a deadly crossroads. Soon one of them begins a dangerous double existence in a life-and-death operation that consumes intelligence agencies from Moscow to Washington, DC.

Page by page, veteran CIA officer Jason Matthews’s Red Sparrow delights, terrifies and fascinates, all while delivering an unforgettable cast, from a sadistic Spetsnaz “mechanic” who carries out Putin’s murderous schemes to the weary CIA Station Chief who resists Washington “cake-eaters”. Packed with insider detail, this novel brims with Matthews’s life experience of espionage, counterintelligence, spy recruitment, and cyber-warfare. Brilliantly composed, Red Sparrow is a masterful spy tale. Authentic, tense, and entertaining, this novel introduces Jason Matthews as a major new American talent." ~Barnes & Noble Overview

Sometimes these books come across as wordy and hard to understand, but Mr. Matthews' novel doesn't come across that way.  Listening to this novel, I've become informed about things I never knew and I could feel confident that basic facts were accurate.  For example, the Russians widely used entrapment of the provocative nature, where women were put in place for that purpose alone.  The world of a spy has very often intrigued me, probably because I could never pull it off!   If you've watched Keri Russell in The Americans on FX lately, I get that feel from this book.  What a great read!

Thank you to Lauren Pires at Simon & Schuster Audio for letting me review this audiobook!

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