Shake Off [NOOK Book]

Overview

An internationally acclaimed thriller of love, espionage and subterfuge, in which Middle East meets West with dangerous consequences.

Years of training have transformed Michel Khoury into a skilled intelligence operative. A refugee whose family was murdered by extremists, he has one mission: the peaceful resolution of the Middle East conflict that upended his life.

An ...
See more details below
Shake Off

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$9.99
BN.com price

Overview

An internationally acclaimed thriller of love, espionage and subterfuge, in which Middle East meets West with dangerous consequences.

Years of training have transformed Michel Khoury into a skilled intelligence operative. A refugee whose family was murdered by extremists, he has one mission: the peaceful resolution of the Middle East conflict that upended his life.

An alluring enigma, he attracts the attention of Helen, a pretty English girl who lives in the adjacent apartment. As their relationship develops, Michel is unable to tell Helen about his past--or the collection of passports and unmarked bills he's concealed in the bathroom they share.

When Michel's secrets turn deadly, Helen and Michel find themselves pursued through the streets of London, Berlin and the Scottish countryside, on the run from the very people they thought they could trust.

A critically celebrated novel that "recalls the cool detachment and compelling eye for ordinary detail that characterized the early thrillers of Graham Greene" (Independent on Sunday), SHAKE OFF is that rare breed of riveting tale--of intrigue and suspense, love and betrayal--that announces a bold new voice for our increasingly global times.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Set at the end of the cold war, Hiller’s beautifully written second novel (after 2010’s Sabra Zoo) chronicles the education of a spy. PLO agent Michel Khoury, who lives in a modest London bedsit but spent his first 15 years in a refugee camp in Lebanon, works for spymaster Abu Leila, who uses him mainly as a courier to shuttle documents from London to East Berlin and back. Now Leila wants his protégé to set up a meeting that will “change the course of history.” Meanwhile, Michel falls for his next-door neighbor, a playful young Englishwoman named Helen, despite a lifetime of keeping strict control over his emotions. Their romance causes increasing difficulties for Michel as he struggles to implement Leila’s instructions and stay true to his cause. A closing twist puts an entirely new perspective on Michel’s life, beliefs, and loyalties. Literary fiction fans will appreciate the sensitive, realistic portrayal of Michel and Helen’s love affair. Agent: David Grossman, David Grossman Literary Agency. (Aug.)
The Economist
"Poignant and human. ... a unique and engaging voice ... deftly drawn ... Powerful and thought-provoking, this is a book that stays with the reader. Mr Hiller's Shake Off is hard to shake off."
Booklist
"Arresting. As much about human longing as derring-do. More than enough tradecraft, suspense, and double-dealing...in common with the writings of Graham Greene and John le Carré."
Haaretz (Israel)
"In the best Le Carre tradition ... Hiller brings to his work not only a craftman's skill but also a compassion for his characters that proves infectious."
Saudi Gazette (Saudi Arabia)
"Ingeniously plotted and skillfully paced ... interlaces compelling human stories with political espionage. The suspense builds until the very end."
The Jordan Times (Jordan)
"Successfully mixes the suspense and fast pace of a spy story with a set of complex, compelling characters and unexpected situations."
Independent on Sunday (UK)
"Gripping [and] taut ... recalls the cool detachment and compelling eye for ordinary detail that characterized the early thrillers of Graham Greene."
Telegraph (UK)
"Melancholy and dreamlike, Hiller's neat upending of conventions movingly captures the realpolitik of a conflict perpetrated by the shared interests of enemies."
Sydney Morning Herald (Australia)
"Excellent ... A fast-moving, literate thriller."
Charles Cumming
"Hypnotic ... A spy thriller of the highest class."
David Morrell
"SHAKE OFF carries the conviction of authentic espionage tradecraft on every page. Imagine John Le Carré combined with Ken Follett. Smart and tense and real enough to be scary."
Thomas Mullen
"The best spy novels not only spin a great story, they also take us into the minds of characters who are mysteries even to themselves. SHAKE OFF is as deceptive as it is perceptive, an intimate portrait of a man veering away from one tragedy and possibly straight into another one."
Will Lavender
"Le Carré said we live in 'coded times,' and SHAKE OFF is a book that takes that idea to hypnotizing levels. A novel about identity and sadness and love, it is also a hellaciously entertaining chase thriller. But the achievement of the novel rests in its orphan main character; Michel is a great character, one of the finest heroes I've seen in the spy genre simply because he is like so many of us, desperately searching for who he is and where he came from. This is a novel that is as much about personhood as it is about tradecraft, and it succeeds on both counts. My highest recommendation."
Adam Woog
"Contemplative and consistently intriguing."
Malcolm Gladwell
"SHAKE OFF absolutely blew me away. Hiller's novel has the benefit of mining every trope of the thriller genre while being absolutely original at the same time. I will read anything by Hiller from now on."
From the Publisher
"SHAKE OFF carries the conviction of authentic espionage tradecraft on every page. Imagine John Le Carré combined with Ken Follett. Smart and tense and real enough to be scary."—David Morrell, New York Times bestselling author of First Blood and Creepers

"Le Carré said we live in 'coded times,' and SHAKE OFF is a book that takes that idea to hypnotizing levels. A novel about identity and sadness and love, it is also a hellaciously entertaining chase thriller. But the achievement of the novel rests in its orphan main character; Michel is a great character, one of the finest heroes I've seen in the spy genre simply because he is like so many of us, desperately searching for who he is and where he came from. This is a novel that is as much about personhood as it is about tradecraft, and it succeeds on both counts. My highest recommendation."—Will Lavender, New York Times bestselling author of Obedience and Dominance

"Poignant and human. ... a unique and engaging voice ... deftly drawn ... Powerful and thought-provoking, this is a book that stays with the reader. Mr Hiller's Shake Off is hard to shake off."—The Economist

"The best spy novels not only spin a great story, they also take us into the minds of characters who are mysteries even to themselves. SHAKE OFF is as deceptive as it is perceptive, an intimate portrait of a man veering away from one tragedy and possibly straight into another one."—Thomas Mullen, author of The Revisionists

"In the best Le Carre tradition ... Hiller brings to his work not only a craftman's skill but also a compassion for his characters that proves infectious."—Haaretz (Israel)

"Ingeniously plotted and skillfully paced ... interlaces compelling human stories with political espionage. The suspense builds until the very end."—Saudi Gazette (Saudi Arabia)

Library Journal
Having escaped from the exploding Middle East, Michel Khoury has become an intelligence operative with a desire for peace, a stash of passports and unmarked bills, and a new girlfriend who doesn't know his true identity. Soon, they're on the run. Half-Palestinian and half-British, Hiller has had great reviews from the UK and beyond for his first thriller (and second novel after the award-winning Sabra Zoo).
Kirkus Reviews
In Hiller's (Sabra Zoo, 2010) second thriller, Michel Khoury is a skilled linguist, a supposed student at the London School of Oriental and African Studies, and a PLO operative controlled by the mysterious Abu Leila. Khoury is a Lebanese Christian, a survivor of a horrific massacre in a Beirut refugee camp. Discovered by Leila, a PLO mastermind rumored to be connected to Arafat, Michel has been groomed since his orphaned teenage years for a purpose never revealed to him. He's learned multiple languages and was schooled in spy craft in Gorbachev's Moscow. Now, Abu Leila has assigned Michel to London, where he runs clandestine errands and acts as Leila's agent. With no other contact within the PLO, Khoury is confused but loyal when he is tasked to find a site for a meeting between Palestinians and Israelis who are working secretly for a single-state solution to Middle Eastern turmoil, a gathering sure to draw assassins from all quarters. In a life driven by deceit, Khoury's motives, decisions and reactions can be traced to the massacre that cost him his family. Khoury's initial human contact is the superbly written Abu Leila, but Hiller opens the narrative by introducing Helen, a beautiful and free-spirited English anthropology doctoral candidate. A romance begins, one filled with the same ambiguity that mirrors Michel's life as an operative. But then Michel's world is shattered when Abu is assassinated in Berlin shortly before the clandestine conference. That sends Khoury, accompanied by Helen, into the wilds of Scotland, pursued by Abu's killers. Moving from Lebanon to Cyprus to Berlin to Moscow and then to London, a city that Hiller knows and makes central to the story, the author writes believably of the world of undercover spies, both about the practicalities--picking locks, coding messages, using false identities--and the atmosphere of constant paranoia, continual double-dealing and amorality. An entertainingly complex, quick-moving psychological thriller.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316204224
  • Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
  • Publication date: 8/14/2012
  • Sold by: Hachette Digital, Inc.
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 288
  • Sales rank: 356,154
  • File size: 882 KB

Meet the Author

Mischa Hiller is a winner of the Commonwealth Writers' Prize in the Best First Book Category for South Asia & Europe. Raised in London, Beirut, and Dar El Salaam, Hiller lives in Cambridge, England.
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

4 Star

(2)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 23, 2013

    Outstanding "Spy" Story

    This is a riveting story, that is very hard to put down. The first half of the book treats the spycraft activities of Michel like it is a harmless game, a game with no reap point. He lives in a cheap rooming house, and slowly falls for his neighbor, an uninhibited girl who seems to be more that meets the eye. By the end of the book you find out that most of what you have learned about the characters is off the mark. And, the second half demonstrates that being a spy, no matter how well trained, is a really dangerous occupation.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2013

    Forest Shakes and Smoothie Shop

    Plz order at next result

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted August 27, 2012

    Gripping Spy Thriller Not to Be Missed!

    Never having read author Mishca Hiller before, I was not sure what to expect. Certainly, the idea of reading a spy thriller about the Arab/Israeli conflict appealed to me but I was pleasantly surprised by the uniqueness of the story. This book is really a character study of a man who is a Lebanese refugee, whose family is murdered, and his main mission is to avenge their killing. As a writer, Hiller is particularly skilled in character develpment and his smooth writing style encourages one to turn every page in anticipation of the interesting story he unravels. I really enjoyed Hiller's writing style and look forward to reading his earlier book, "Sabra Zoo". Perhaps Hiller will continue with this character, Michel in another book. This first book offers readers a chance to become intimate with a vulnerable man who is directed at a young age to fight an enemy he is not sure of and to experience relationships he does not fully understand. Trying to overcome the horrendous childhood experience of witnessing the demise of his family, his injured soul relies on codeine to cope. I won't tell you anymore, but be sure to read this gripping story...you won't be sorry. It's a very good book and I hope the author will consider a sequel.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 23, 2013

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)