Book Review: Moscow Rules by Daniel Silva
4 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / June 18, 2013

About: Moscow Rules by Daniel Silva is the eighth in the Gabriel Allon series. Even though there are numerous references to the previous books, I thought this novel was still a good read and could be read independently. 352 pages Publisher: Signet Language: English ISBN-10: 0451227387 My rating for Moscow Rules – 4 Buy this book in paper or elec­tronic format* Thoughts: Moscow Rules by Daniel Silva (web­site) is another solid, well-written and dependable adventure in the Gabriel Allon chronicles. After reading the 8th book in the series it is obvious that Silva has created a character that is strong, subtle and conflicted with an interesting background story and engaging future. At this point in his life, Allon and the readers aren’t really sure what he is. Allon is too old to be the James Bond style agent, too young to retire, too cynical to take a desk job but he is a patriot in every bone in his body and is still able to contribute. Silva realize that he can’t keep his spy young forever and basically ruined his spying career in several books prior by having his face splashed across newspapers and European agencies not allowing him entry…

Book Review: The Secret Servant by Daniel Silva
5 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / August 22, 2012

Article first published as Book Review: The Secret Servant by Daniel Silva on Blogcritics. About: The Secret Servant by Daniel Silva brings back Israeli spy Gabriel Allon in this seventh installment. This time we find Allon as a weary, tired agent ready to hang up his holster and, unwillingly, accept his fate in management. 385 pages Publisher: Putnam Adult Language: English ISBN-10: 0399154221 My rating for The Secret Servant – 5 Buy this book in paper or elec­tronic format More Books by Daniel Silva Thoughts: I found The Secret Servant by Daniel Silva (web­site) to be a more current, at least in atmosphere, of the Gabriel Allon series. As usual with the rest of the series, the book is difficult to put down, a fast paced adventure and thriller which brings back familiar characters. The characters age with the books, which I like. None are superheroes, but people with issues and problems who only justify their acts to themselves by holding a high moral ground. However, this high moral ground must be broken from time to time which leaves them feeling confused and filled with regrets. The book is filled with many characters, bumbling politicians, Islamic extremists, non-extremists Islamic people and other hot button issues from current day world. However,…

Book Review: The Messenger by Daniel Silva
4 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / July 2, 2012

Article first published as Book Review: The Messenger by Daniel Silva on Blogcritics. About: The Messenger by Daniel Silva is the sixth novel in the Gabriel Allon series. Allon is an Israeli agent who is more interested in restoring works of art than the world of espionage. 352 pages Publisher: G. P. Putnam’s Sons (July 25, 2006) Language: English ISBN-10: 0399153357 My rating for The Messenger – 4 Buy this book in paper or elec­tronic format More Books by Daniel Silva Thoughts: The Messenger by Daniel Silva (web­site) is more of a thriller than the previous five books. The book is quite violent and Allon’s ruthlessness comes out in several highly charged scenes. While I didn’t think The Messenger was the best in the series, it did fill in some missing gaps in the relationships between the characters. As in many book series this one also is a standalone, but it’s always nice to read them in order. I was glad to read about the return of Chiara, Allon’s love interest which we lost in the previous book. I also loved the way Silva wrote the Pope (“the” Pope, not some mobster or terrorist with a nickname), he was approachable and seemed like a good leader. Silva incorporated current events…

Bookends Porn – People
Latest Posts / March 21, 2012

Like every other bookish person, I like bookends as well, especially ones that goes nicely with the books they hold in between even though, most likely, I’ll be the only person to ever notice. I was looking for bookends, not to buy but just to imagine when I noticed how many bookends of people there are. To be honest – they look good but I like the “Reading Sophisticates” one especially. Here are some of my favorites – which one is yours? Sterling Home Child Games Bookend Trio, 7-1/4-Inch Tall by Sterling Homedj 7-1/4-Inch tall bookend trio features young children playing hide-and-seek Makes a great gift for a teacher, parent, child care provider, or grandparent Crafted from durable composite material for long lasting beauty Antiqued finish Bookends can decorate a table or shelf or even use to hold up books  Bey Berk Lady Justice Bookend by BEY BERK Dimensions: 4 inches x 3.75 inches x 8.5 inches (per side) and 9.5 pounds Blind justice guards the innocent daily in the court, now let her protect you books Cast in solid bronze and set upon solid marble  Sterling Home Pair of Children Swinging Not Too High Bookends by Sterling Home Pair of not too…

President Clinton’s Favorite Books
Latest Posts , Opinion / December 21, 2011

President Clinton stopped by the Today Show yesterday and talked about the books he likes to read.  I was surprised and delighted to discover what the President read and to discover that we share the same taste. Image from http://clinton2.nara.gov/WH/kids/html/bill.html Jerusalem by Simon Sebag Montefiore President Clinton says: “Truly a biography of the city“ Lincoln by David Herbert Donald President Clinton says: “A book you could read if you wanted to read a novel… an astonishing book“ The Way of the World by David Fromkin President Clinton says: “[A] one volume short history of civilization” Washington: A Life by Ron Chernow President Clinton says: This is a book for “anybody who really wants to understand how we started should read“ And I agree President Clinton also likes to read fiction, crime fiction nonetheless. His favorite fictional character is Daniel Silva’s Gabriel Allon and I must admin that it is mine as well. Check out Daniel Silva’s Amazon Page. I can recommend any of the Gabriel Allon books, but if you’re new to the series try to start at the beginning. As well as Gabriel Allon, President Clinton also said he enjoyed the Alex Cross series as well as books by…

Thoughts on: Prince of Fire by Daniel Silva
4 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / November 12, 2011

About: Prince of Fire by Daniel Silva is the fifth book in the Gabriel Allon series. Unlike the previous books, this one takes place mostly in Israel as oppose to Europe. 432 pages Publisher: Signet ISBN: 0451215737 My rating for Prince of Fire – 4 Buy & Save on Prince of Fire through the ManOfLa­Book affil­i­ate account on: Ama­zon | Kin­dle | Book Depos­i­tory US | Book Depos­i­tory UK More books by Daniel Silva Thoughts: Prince of Fire by Daniel Silva (web­site) is another action packed book in the series about my new favorite recurring character. This book differs from the previous ones because it takes place mostly in Israel, as oppose to Europe, and does not have a holocaust connection. In the previous books, Daniel Silva unleashed his furious pen on European countries exposing their hypocrisy over their role in the Holocaust. This time however the author targets one person, Yasser Arafat. Arafat, who died shortly after the novel came out, is depicted as a liar, a racist and a despicable human being who is resisting peace, making the Palestinian people suffer, for no good reason. With all the action and adventure, this is ultimately a melancholy book. Allon is…

Book Review: The Confessor by Daniel Silva
5 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / June 22, 2011

About: “The Confessor” by Daniel Silva (web­site) is the third installment in the fictional adventures of the reluctant Israeli agentGabriel Allon. 480 pages Publisher: Signet ISBN: 0451211480 My rat­ing for The Confessor — 5 Buy & Save on “The Confessor” through the ManOfLa­Book affil­i­ate account on: Ama­zon |Book Depos­i­tory US | Book Depos­i­tory UK Thoughts: As I have come to expect from Daniel Silva, this book is well written, well plotted and the characters are fantastic.  Each book occurs in the Silva universe with recurring characters (from other series) , have several layers of intricacies and thoughts, as well as smaller stories which the reader has to keep track of in the fast pace which the book is told. This novel is also thought provoking – what was the church’s role during the holocaust? We know that no action was taken and the Vatican did open its archives several yeas back to six scholars who found the lack of documentation available astounding (the Vatican vilified the three Jewish scholars without mention of the three Catholic scholars – all of whom came to the same conclusions).  There are a few pages in the end where Mr. Silva touches upon this subject which…

Book Review: A Death in Vienna by Daniel Silva
5 Stars , Fiction , Latest Posts / June 1, 2011

About: “A Death in Vienna” by Daniel Silva (website) is the fourth book in the fictional Gabriel Allon series. The book touches on revenge and justice themes. 416 pages Publisher: Putnam Adult ISBN: 9780399151439 My rating for A Death in Vienna – 5 Buy & Save on “A Death in Vienna” through the ManOfLa­Book affil­i­ate account on: Ama­zon |Book Depos­i­tory US | Book Depos­i­tory UK Thoughts: “A Death in Vienna” by Daniel Silva is a well written book with a complex plot. The trail of clues which intermingle with historical events and touches complex and sensitive political maze, is a pleasure to read. Daniel Silva is quickly becoming one of my favorite authors; his books are not only intelligent and sophisticated, but also credible. Mr. Silva is one of those authors that takes his historical research seriously and it shows. Which leaves me with a serious problem. No matter how hard I try to put my thoughts down on one of Mr. Silva’s book, I always end up sounding like a blurb on the dust jacket. The plot is full of twists and turns, a wonderful cast of characters (which might be difficult to keep track of if you haven’t read…

Book Review: The Marching Season by Daniel Silva
3 Stars , Fiction / January 23, 2011

I borrowed this book from the local library. My rating for The Marching Season – 3 About: “The Marching Season” by Daniel Silva (Website | Facebook | Twitter) is a fictional sequel to “The Mark of the Assassin (Book Review | Buy)”.  The phrase “Marching Season” comes from the parades held in Northern Ireland every year. | Get a discount on “The Marching Season” through the ManOfLaBook affiliate account on: Amazon |Book Depository US | Book Depository UK | Thoughts: “The Marching Season” by Daniel Silva has most of the same characters as its prequel, but the book is not as enjoyable. The pace is fast but the story is predictable, about half way through (if not sooner) I already figured out the ending which, this time, had no twists. The plot actually has two main parts, the Irish terrorists who call themselves “The Ulster Freedom Brigade”; the second is about Osbourne and the two parts are closely related.  The characters in the book are reasonably well drawn and the plot is well put together. This is an OK thriller, I liked Silva’s other books better.  However, I’m sure that this book read much better when it was written, at…

Book Review: The Mark of the Assassin by Daniel Silva
4 Stars , Fiction / November 15, 2010

I borrowed this book from the local library. My rating for The Mark of the Assassin – 4 About: “The Mark of the Assassin” by Daniel Sivla is fast paced fictional mystery about CIA agent Michael Osbourne. The story takes place mainly in the United States & England and involves several contemporary themes. Thoughts: “The Mark of the Assassin” was a good, quick read with several references to Silva’s first novel “The Unlikely Spy” (book review) which I found entertaining – even though this is a separate story.   The book starts out a bit slow (but well paced) and keeps you reading with twists and a surprise I didn’t see midway through. To be fair though, the setup alone is half the book. There are many elements in the mix: political intrigue, a wife, medical issues, international locations, twists, turns and a few surprises. Those elements are a winning combination. The book has well developed characters, great plot-line and it kept me interested until the last page, as well as a theory which is thought provoking, if nothing else. | Synopsis: The story starts with an act of terrorism. A jet liner is shot out of the sky using an…

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