Customer Reviews for

Moscow Rules (Gabriel Allon Series #8)

Average Rating 4
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

9 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

engaging spy thriller

Art restorer Alessio Vianelli also known in some secretive circles as Israeli master-spy Gabriel Allon is on his honeymoon with his second wife Chiara in Umbria when his friend and undercover associate Uzi Navot meets with him at an Assisi, Italy restaurant. Uzi, a sen...
Art restorer Alessio Vianelli also known in some secretive circles as Israeli master-spy Gabriel Allon is on his honeymoon with his second wife Chiara in Umbria when his friend and undercover associate Uzi Navot meets with him at an Assisi, Italy restaurant. Uzi, a senior official for the Israel secret intelligence service, informs Gabriel that Russian arms dealer Ivan Kharkov is selling weapons to al-Qaeda. The assumption is obvious that a planned major terrorist attack is forthcoming, but none of the western espionage agents knows which cell or where. Gabriel insists on investigating. ---- The tip came from inside Moscow as Ivan¿s wife Elena warned the west. Gabriel believes she is the only avenue to who specifically her spouse is selling the weapons to she must be recruited in order for her to obtain Kharkov's ledger sheet. Unknown to Gabriel and his associates is that the former Russian Colonel and his associates have grandiose schemes to return Russia to its Soviet Empire glory days and thanks to western, Chinese, and Indian thirst for oil, money is no longer an obstacle. ---- The Allon counterespionage series is one of the best spy thriller sagas on the market today however his latest escapades in Moscow is fast-paced, but lacks the moral underpinnings that make the enemy seem human. Perhaps it is because MOSCOW RULES follows the fantastic THE SECRET SERVANT, which placed the spy thriller quality bar at stratospheric levels especially with the extraordinary explanation on how a person metamorphosis into a terrorist. In spite a shaky ending, Daniel Silva¿s tale showcases a different no longer bleak Moscow in which oil money and America¿s economic woes has made many think they can revisit and win the Cold War especially influential ruthless former military colonels. ---- Harriet Klausner

posted by harstan on December 9, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

Good guy Gabriel

Artist/not-so-secret agent Gabriel Allon is lured from his idyllic Umbria honeymoon by a request for a "small favor" from his mentor/father surrogate, former head of the Mussad. The favor turns out to be lethal. Although the mission that develops is a crucial one, invol...
Artist/not-so-secret agent Gabriel Allon is lured from his idyllic Umbria honeymoon by a request for a "small favor" from his mentor/father surrogate, former head of the Mussad. The favor turns out to be lethal. Although the mission that develops is a crucial one, involving covert arms sales and global terrorism, Gabriel has learned to subjugate what his heart tells him in order to do what he deems right. Somehow, Moscow Rules is missing the edge that all previous Allon novels have offered. While there is menace and violence to spare, Gabriel himself seems to be going through the paces because, well, that's what he does. The villain of the piece, Ivan Kharkov, seems a caricature designed to personify all the tyrannical elements that persist even in modern Russia, and his wife, who rats him out, doesn't come across as strong or committed enough to fulfill her mission. Nevertheless, I'd rather read a Silva covert-ops novel than one by virtually anyone else writing today, and Moscow isn't bad, simply not quite as sharp as its predecessors.

posted by katknit on June 11, 2009

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  • Posted June 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    Good guy Gabriel

    Artist/not-so-secret agent Gabriel Allon is lured from his idyllic Umbria honeymoon by a request for a "small favor" from his mentor/father surrogate, former head of the Mussad. The favor turns out to be lethal. Although the mission that develops is a crucial one, involving covert arms sales and global terrorism, Gabriel has learned to subjugate what his heart tells him in order to do what he deems right. Somehow, Moscow Rules is missing the edge that all previous Allon novels have offered. While there is menace and violence to spare, Gabriel himself seems to be going through the paces because, well, that's what he does. The villain of the piece, Ivan Kharkov, seems a caricature designed to personify all the tyrannical elements that persist even in modern Russia, and his wife, who rats him out, doesn't come across as strong or committed enough to fulfill her mission. Nevertheless, I'd rather read a Silva covert-ops novel than one by virtually anyone else writing today, and Moscow isn't bad, simply not quite as sharp as its predecessors.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 27, 2013

    Good, but could have been much better.

    As the Gabriel Allon series progresses, it's only natural to see characters develop more fully than a single appearance in a one-time novel would allow. This seemed to happen since the beginning of the series, but, in my opinion, has now stalled. Although time is allotted for more character development, the reader is really only presented the characters as they have been before. In wanting to treat the characters better, the author uses a lot of words to set up a scene or an impending action but accomplishes not much more than the set-up itself. Although as a reader I am not put off by an ending that leaves some matters "hanging" (and this book does, allowing for a future for the bad and the good), I feel this book got to a point where the author said, "OK. I'm done. Let's end it and go to press."
    I also had the thought as I read about the mental and physical condition of Allon as the book ended, that he learns nothing from past experiences -- though that would not allow, I guess, for anything more than full retirement and the end of the series. All in all, if you like this author and his characters (as I surely do), the disappointments are outweighed by the plot that is all to much a reality for these times.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 23, 2012

    Moscow Rules

    I have read Moscow Rules, as well as all the "Gabriel Allon" series, and enjoyed them tremendously. I highly recommend Moscow Rules. It is entertaining as well as educational.

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  • Posted September 3, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Little too detailed for my taste

    While this is a good read it seems a little to detailed and drawn out for my taste. There are definately times where you just want to move along and get back to the main story-line.

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