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Journeyman Tailor Paperback – Mar 14 2000


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 461 pages
  • Publisher: Corgi; New edition edition (March 14 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552147249
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552147248
  • Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 17.4 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 222 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #397,464 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joseph Haschka on Oct. 24 2003
Format: Paperback
Gerald Seymour's novels have transported us to so many places festering with suppurating animosities: the Balkans, Afghanistan, Kurdish Iraq, Italy, the old U.S.S.R., Lebanon, South Africa. In THE JOURNEYMAN TAILOR, we're off to one of the most intractable of Gordian knots, Northern Ireland.
Jon Jo Donnelly, a legend in his own time, is an IRA assassin on undercover assignment in the heart of England with his sniper rifle and cache of explosives. Back in Donnelly's Ulster home town, Song Bird is a British Security Service (MI5) informant embedded in the IRA infrastructure. Gary "Bren" Brennard, a newbie to MI5, is rushed over in short order to Northern Ireland to help run Song Bird after his predecessor's cover is blown.
Jon Jo is killing at will in Britain's hinterland. The PM wants his head on a platter yesterday. MI5's plan is to lure Donnelly back to his farm and family, at which time he can be isolated by Song Bird for elimination by Her Majesty's forces.
The focus of this thriller isn't Jon Jo, Song Bird or Bren. Rather, it's young Cathy Parker, ruefully characterized as "a slip of a thing" by the Assistant Under-Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, whose ears have been burned by Parker's no-compromise lecture on Song Bird's importance. Cathy is Bren's boss on the ground and the informer's recruiter and chief handler.
In Seymour's other novels that I've read, the primary protagonist's motives are revealed. In Parker's case, we learn little of her background other than she's the renegade daughter of affluent English parents.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Just a slip of a girl Oct. 24 2003
By Joseph Haschka - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Gerald Seymour's novels have transported us to so many places festering with suppurating animosities: the Balkans, Afghanistan, Kurdish Iraq, Italy, the old U.S.S.R., Lebanon, South Africa. In THE JOURNEYMAN TAILOR, we're off to one of the most intractable of Gordian knots, Northern Ireland.
Jon Jo Donnelly, a legend in his own time, is an IRA assassin on undercover assignment in the heart of England with his sniper rifle and cache of explosives. Back in Donnelly's Ulster home town, Song Bird is a British Security Service (MI5) informant embedded in the IRA infrastructure. Gary "Bren" Brennard, a newbie to MI5, is rushed over in short order to Northern Ireland to help run Song Bird after his predecessor's cover is blown.
Jon Jo is killing at will in Britain's hinterland. The PM wants his head on a platter yesterday. MI5's plan is to lure Donnelly back to his farm and family, at which time he can be isolated by Song Bird for elimination by Her Majesty's forces.
The focus of this thriller isn't Jon Jo, Song Bird or Bren. Rather, it's young Cathy Parker, ruefully characterized as "a slip of a thing" by the Assistant Under-Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, whose ears have been burned by Parker's no-compromise lecture on Song Bird's importance. Cathy is Bren's boss on the ground and the informer's recruiter and chief handler.
In Seymour's other novels that I've read, the primary protagonist's motives are revealed. In Parker's case, we learn little of her background other than she's the renegade daughter of affluent English parents. In the now, she's red-haired, 5 foot 4 inches tall, weighs 8 stone 3 pounds, obsessively driven by her job, idolized by her male peers, backed to the max by her superiors, and affectionately regarded by MI5's otherwise bitter rivals in the Royal Ulster Constabulary and the Special Air Services. An alpha female that draws males like moths to light. Will Bren's wings get singed?
Since Seymour doesn't repeat a main character in other novels, it's unlikely we're to meet Cathy again. A pity, since, to me at least, she's proved to be one of the author's most engaging creations. Parker aside, however, this riveting book continue's the author's tradition of giving the reader a (presumably) realistic insight into the minds and hearts of the ordinary people who fight the gritty conflicts in the grotty corners of the civilized world where there are no winners and losers - only survivors. This is good stuff - the best of the genre on pulp fiction shelves.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Who Dares Wins as it really is. April 13 2000
By Kevin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio Cassette
If you're into the real macoy of what it feels like to live undercover, where everything and anything you say and do may give you away, this is the book for you. Always sharply focussed and with enough suspense to stop you putting the book down before you've turned the last page. The only down side is the lack of a sequal!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
A masterpiece! March 28 2000
By Chester Beeput - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Captured the essence of the Catholic/Protestant conflict. The reader empathises with the Irish people but can still appreciate and applaud the actions taken by the British security forces. The use of a strong central female character in the initiation of an inexperienced male operative in this arena is at the heart of this book. Their interactions, and his own internal battle in justifying the cold, calculated acts committed in the name of God and country serve to introduce two unforgettable characters. The icing on the cake is the blending of history with the present in the introduction of, and frequent allusions to, a historical character who seems to come alive in another central character who is the protagonist of the "dynamic duo".
Seymour is always 5 star Sept. 15 2013
By Leah Tchack - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
You are in for a super treat with any of Gerald Seymour's books. He is the best. See my review of The Unknown Soldier for more detail.
Good book March 16 2013
By Karen Steinhardt - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Good book with some fictional facts about the Troubles. A little slow in spots but overall decent reading. Read this before Harry's Game - think I got it backwards.

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