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"Since you would do a thing like this, I will surely take revenge on you, and after that I will cease." -- Judges 15:7

Where does revenge lead? That's the painful question posed by Daniel Silva's latest novel about Israel's most dangerous man, Gabriel Allon. In Moscow Rules, arms dealer and evil doer Ivan Kharkov loses his children, a lot of money, and his pride. There are bound to be consequences, but Kharkov is a subtle snake.

As the book opens, defector Grigori Bulganov is on his way to a chess tournament he's expected to win when he disappears from the streets of London. The British are convinced he's a double agent and is headed home to Moscow. The news doesn't get to Gabriel for some time. Ordered to leave it alone, Gabriel is convinced that his Moscow savior needs saving and heads for London to do his own investigation. One thing leads to another and Gabriel soon realizes that Ivan Kharkov has made revenge personal.

While the general outline of the plot is quite predictable, the menace being so personal makes the book much more appealing than Mr. Silva's plot formula normally would allow. You'll feel Gabriel's pain more intensely than you normally relate to a hero in a thriller. The book continues to explore Mr. Silva's theme of how evil destroys even those who fight it in a convincing way. I was deeply impressed by the portrayal of evil and its consequences.

At the same time, Mr. Silva keeps a few surprises for us that will make your eyes open wide with shock. No matter how late you stay up to finish the book (I did at 2:03 a.m.), you'll be wide awake when you do.

There's a continuing warning about the risks of dealing with the ex-KGB men who lead Russia that's underlined by a final note on how dangerous it is to be a journalist in the new Russia. It's chilling to think about.

If you like your stories to be bloodless and painless, this won't be the book for you.
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TOP 100 REVIEWERon January 11, 2011
Book 9 in the Gabriel Allon series

Daniel Silva provides once more an exciting and captivating tale that will keep the readers focused in an endless need to see what will come next, the series is very addictive. The 9th instalment is an edge of the seat thriller, able to compete with the best for the reader's attention. Although "The Defector" is a sequel to "Moscow Rules, there is just the right amount of background given so this novel can fly on its own, no doubt it will hook many new readers. Who knows it may pique their interest enough to read past novels.

The tale picks up 6 months after the dramatic conclusion of "Moscow Rules". Once again Gabriel is thrown into turmoil with the shocking news from London that defector Colonel Grigori Bulganov has disappeared without a trace. Colonel G.B., a known double agent, is now suspected of being a turn coat once again but Gabriel has another theory. Colonel G.B. had betrayed Kharkov, a billionaire arms dealer, on many levels and Gabriel suspects the time to get even has arrived. Many things have changed in Russia but punishment for treason remains the same. With this fact in mind, Gabriel realizes his team of operatives have a very small window to prove his theory.

At the pinnacle of the investigation, Gabriel's ability to multi task is put to the test with news of his wife's abduction. Could this be payback for his past history with Kharkov and his present theory, is there a link between the two abductions? The reader is quickly drawn into the escalating war between the two adversaries.....Did I use the adjectives addicted and hooked before??? :)...

Mr. Silva knows how to capture the reader's attention; intense and exciting action and scenes that are gut-wrenching and gruesome at times are all part of his plot and sub-plots. He uses a touch of romance along the route to soften the tone. The story although a little far-fetched is highly entertaining, all the characters have been well developed and have progressed beautifully with time. Mr. Silva has definitely created and adopted a style that works but I find Gabriel's character is on the verge of becoming one-dimensional and too predictable.

This novel is a page turner hard to put down
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on June 1, 2014
I like this one so well that I have bought several more of this author's books in this series. It is interesting and really moves along with never a dull moment. An interesting set of characters and circumstances.
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on May 31, 2014
I enjoyed this book as I have all his others. Plot twists and turns, but with the same characters, it flows evenly.
Thanks for another great read.
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on September 10, 2014
Easy read spy story that pulls you into each chapter to find out how Allon will deal with the evil
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on May 14, 2015
I enjoy each book of the Gabriel All on series however they are starting to be a bit repeatative.
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on August 9, 2014
Most of the books from Daniel Silva are good, this is one of the good one.
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on May 3, 2016
Complicated and fascinating.
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on March 19, 2016
a great thriller
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on May 15, 2011
I have every book Daniel Silva has written and I have enjoyed every one! They are books you just cannot put down.

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