The Eleventh Commandment

The Eleventh Commandment

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by Jeffrey Archer
     
 

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The Eleventh Commandment.

Connor Fitzgerald is a professional's professional. Holder of the Medal of Honor. Devoted family man. Servant of his country. CIA assassin. Days before his retirement from the Company, Fitzgerald comes face to face with an enemy who, for the first time, even he cannot handle—his own boss, Helen Dexter, Director of the CIA.

Overview

The Eleventh Commandment.

Connor Fitzgerald is a professional's professional. Holder of the Medal of Honor. Devoted family man. Servant of his country. CIA assassin. Days before his retirement from the Company, Fitzgerald comes face to face with an enemy who, for the first time, even he cannot handle—his own boss, Helen Dexter, Director of the CIA.

Thou Shalt Not Be Caught.

But Dexter's stranglehold on the agency is threatened by a power greater than her own, and her only hope is to destroy Fitzgerald. Meanwhile, on the other side of the world, a new threat to national security is emerging: a ruthless hardline Russian president who is determined to force a military confrontation between the two superpowers. It's up to the intrepid Fitzgerald to pull off his most daring mission yet—save the world.and his own life.

Author Biography: Jeffrey Archer was educated at Oxford University, where as a world-class sprinter he represented Great Britain in international competition. He became the youngest member of the House of Commons in 1969, was appointed Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party in 1985, and was elevated to the House of Lords in 1992. All of his story collections and novels — from 1974's Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less to 1993's Honor Among Thieves — have been international bestsellers. Mr. Archer is married, has two children, and lives in Cambridge, England.

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
The best-selling author of "The Fourth Estate" and "Honor Among Thieves" injects enough plot-twisting ingenuity, exotic characterization, and narrative surprises to keep the pages of "The Eleventh Commandment" turning. Connor Fitzgerald, a Medal of Honor recipient and devoted family man, has been leading a double life as a the CIA's most deadly assassin. Only days before his retirement he is pitted against an unlikely enemy—his own boss, Helen Dexter, director of the CIA. Dexter's stranglehold on the agency is threatened by one decision, and her only hope of survival is to destroy Fitzgerald. Meanwhile, an international crisis looms when a ruthless Russian president is determined to force a military confrontation between the Russia and the U.S. From urgent meetings in the Oval Officer to a Russian mafya boss's luxurious hideaway outside St. Petersburg, "The Eleventh Commandment" is a gripping read.
bn.com
Jeffrey Archer's The Eleventh Commandment is a thrilling, tightly woven spy adventure that involves Connor Fitzgerald, the CIA's No. 1 assassin; the female director of the CIA, who wants Fitzgerald dead due to some incriminating knowledge he has about her; and a ruthless Russian president, who is determined to launch a military strike against the U.S.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
From the first line, former British M.P. Archer (The Fourth Estate, etc.) navigates a nonstop, rocketing ride. Middle-aged Connor Fitzgerald is a happily married man, decorated veteran and devoted father; he's also aN "NOC," a "non-official cover officer" for the CIA specializing in assassinations. The killing of a Colombian drug lord leaves Connor out of sync with the Democratic president's policy, so the director of the CIA, a woman, sets Connor up to take the fall in a fake assassination of the leading candidate for the Russian presidency, an unreconstructed Stalinist. Connor (aided by an ex-CIA deputy director whose life he once saved) gets out of a St. Petersburg jail and falls into the hands of the Russian Mafia. Wheels spin within wheels until the slam-bang climax during the new Russian president's visit to Washington. Some plot details, including the final twist, are a tad hokey, and Connor keeps his much-touted charisma under wraps, yet Archer sweeps us along (and even finds time to write himself into the plot as London's mayor, a position he's seeking in real life). The only boo-boo here is Archer's unwitting revivification of flamboyant Redskins owner and Northern Virginia tycoon Jack Kent Cooke (though he was a character). In any case, readers won't mind the occasional giddiness: this isn't Tolstoy, it's fun.
Kirkus Reviews
"This was the real world," CIA assassin Connor Fitzgerald reminds himself as he escapes from his latest messy job without a single "Rambo-type helicopter" for help. Fortunately, he couldn't be more wrong: He's got both feet firmly planted in Archerland Deluxe. After getting out of Colombia just in time for what would be the opening credits if this were a James Bond movie, beloved hit-man Connor, a decorated Vietnam vet and devoted family man who's only a wink and a smile from reassignment to a cushy desk job, gets the bad news: His hard-nosed boss, CIA director Helen Dexter, gives him a choice between heading the agency office in Cleveland (Cleveland!) and taking early retirement. Seems that Connor knows secrets that would help the exasperated President bury Dexter deep, and Dexter, rabidly opposed to a CIA-gutting arms reduction bill the Chief Executive's negotiating (and, at any rate, not one to go gently into that good night), has arranged a spectacular bit of treachery to make sure Connor never gets a chance to spill the beans. He's sent packing off to Moscow for one last job—to eliminate Victor Zerimski, the warmongering Communist candidate for the Russian presidency. It's just like Connor's other jobs, except for two differences: It hasn't been authorized by the White House (despite a tricky bit of techno-wizardry that fools Connor into thinking it has), and it's not supposed to be successful. Instead, Dexter's minions will tip the Russians off just in time to send Connor on a one-way ticket to St. Petersburg's fearsome Crucifix prison. Once Connor's locked away, the verdict and sentence are a foregone conclusion, and no one's escaped from Crucifix sincebest-selling Archer (Twelve Red Herrings, 1994, etc.) was a gleam in his ancestors' eyes. There's much, much more—roping in the Russian Mafia, the Washington Redskins, a dozen double-crosses, and two returns from the grave—all of it the most rousing moonshine.

From the Publisher

“Archer delivers another page-turning, heart-stopping saga, with delightful twists, and a surprise ending… readers will surely wait for the next with bated breath.” —Publishers Weekly on ONLY TIME WILL TELL

“General readers as well as Archer fans will enjoy this unforgettable tale, which abounds with cliff-hangers that propel its intriguing and intricate plot.” —Library Journal (starred review) on ONLY TIME WILL TELL

“What appears at the outset to be a straightforward coming-of-age tale becomes, by the end, a saga of power, betrayal, and bitter hatred. The novel ends on a deliberately dark note, setting the stage for the sequel…An outstanding effort from a reliable veteran.” —Booklist (starred review), on Only Time Will Tell

“By the time you make it to the last page, the drama of Harry Clifton's young life takes the reader to the edge of the cliff, where they must hang until the next Clifton Chronicle.” —Sunday Telegraph on ONLY TIME WILL TELL

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780061013317
Publisher:
HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
05/01/1999
Pages:
448
Product dimensions:
4.18(w) x 6.75(h) x 1.12(d)

Read an Excerpt


Chapter One

As he opened the door the alarm went off.

The sort of mistake you would expect an amateur to make, which was surprising, since Connor Fitzgerald was considered by his peers to be the professional's professional.

Fitzgerald had anticipated that it would be several minutes before the local policia responded to a burglary in the San Victorina district.

There were still a couple of hours to go before the kickoff of the annual match against Brazil, but half the television sets in Colombia would already be switched on. If Fitzgerald had broken into the pawnshop after the gamehad started, the policia probably wouldn't have followed it up until the referee had blown the final whistle. It was well known that the local criminals regarded the match as a ninety-minute parole period. But his plans for that ninety minutes would have the policia chasing their own shadows for days. And it would be weeks, probably months, before anyone worked out the real significance of the break-in that Saturday afternoon.

The alarm was still sounding as Fitzgerald closed the back door and made his way quickly through the small storeroom toward the front of the shop. He ignored the rows of watches on their little stands, emeralds in their cellophane bags, and gold objects of every size and shape displayed behind a fine-mesh grille. All were carefully marked with a name and date, so theirimpoverished owners could return within six months and reclaim their familyheirlooms. Few ever did.

Fitzgerald swept aside the bead curtain that divided the storeroom fromthe shop, and paused behind the counter. His eyes rested on a battered leathercase on a stand in the centerof the window. Printed on the lid in fadedgold letters were the initials DVR. He remained absolutely still until hewas certain that no one was looking in.

When Fitzgerald had sold the handcrafted masterpiece to the shopkeeper earlierthat day, he had explained that as he had no intention of returning to Bogota,it could go on sale immediately. Fitzgerald was not surprised that the piecehad already been placed in the window. There wouldn't be another one likeit in Colombia.

He was about to climb over the counter when a young man strolled past thewindow. Fitzgerald froze, but the man's attention was wholly occupied bya small radio he was pressing to his left ear. He took about as much noticeof Fitzgerald as he would of a dressmaker's dummy. Once he was out of sight,Fitzgerald straddled the counter and walked to the window. He glanced upand down the road to check for any casual observers, but there were none.With one movement he removed the leather case from its stand and walkedquickly back. He leapt over the counter and turned to look out of the windowagain to reassure himself that no inquisitive eyes had witnessed the burglary.

Fitzgerald swung around, pulled aside the bead curtain and strode on towardthe closed door. He checked his watch. The alarm had been blaring away forninety-eight seconds. He stepped into the alley and listened. Had he heardthe whine of a police siren, he would have turned left and disappeared intothe maze of streets that ran behind the pawnbroker's shop. But apart fromthe alarm, everything remained silent. He turned right and walked casuallyin the direction of Carrera Septima.

When Connor Fitzgerald reached the pavement he glanced left and then right,wove through the light traffic and, without looking back, crossed to thefar side of the street. He disappeared into a crowded restaurant, wherea group of noisy fans were seated around a large-screen television.

Nobody gave him a glance. Their only interest was in watching endless replaysof the three goals Colombia had scored the previous year. He took a seatat a corner table. Although he couldn't see the television screen clearly,he had a perfect view across the street. A battered sign with the wordsj. escobar. monte de piedad, establecido 1946, flapped in the afternoonbreeze above the pawnshop.

Several minutes passed before a police car screeched to a halt outside theshop. Once Fitzgerald had seen the two uniformed officers enter the building,he left his table and walked nonchalantly out of the back door onto anotherquiet Saturday-afternoon street. He hailed the first empty taxi and saidin a broad South African accent, "El Belvedere on the Plaza de Bolivar,por favor." The driver nodded curtly, as if to make it clear that hehad no wish to become involved in a prolonged conversation. As Fitzgeraldslumped into the back of the battered yellow cab, he turned up the radio.

Fitzgerald checked his watch again. Seventeen minutes past one. He was runninga couple of minutes behind schedule. The speech would have already begun,but as they always lasted for well over forty minutes, he still had morethan enough time to carry out his real reason for being in Bogota. He moveda few inches to his right, so as to be sure the driver could see him clearlyin the rearview mirror.

Once the policia began their investigations, Fitzgerald needed everyonewho had seen him that day to give roughly the same description: male, Caucasian,fiftyish, a shade over six feet, around 210 pounds, unshaven, dark unrulyhair, dressed like a foreigner, with a foreign accent, but not American.He hoped that at least one of them would be able to identify the South Africannasal twang. Fitzgerald had always been good at accents. In high schoolhe had regularly been in trouble for mimicking his teachers.

The taxi's radio continued to pump out the views of expert after experton the likely outcome of the annual fixture. Fitzgerald mentally switchedoff from a language he had little interest in mastering, although he hadrecently added falta, fuera, and gol to his limited vocabulary.

Meet the Author


JEFFREY ARCHER was educated at Oxford University. He has served five years in Britain's House of Commons and fourteen years in the House of Lords. All of his novels and short story collections-including And Thereby Hangs a Tale, A Prisoner of Birth, and Kane & Abel-have been international bestsellers. Archer is married with two sons and lives in London and Cambridge.

Brief Biography

Hometown:
London and the Old Vicarage, Grantchester
Date of Birth:
April 15, 1940
Education:
Attended Brasenose College, Oxford, 1963-66. Received a diploma in sports education from Oxford Institute

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The Eleventh Commandment 4.1 out of 5 based on 2 ratings. 37 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
¿A brilliant thriller, that will greatly shock you, with it¿s cunning deception, betrayal, and lies.¿ This fictional thriller novel is about the ordinary life of a respectful American father, husband, and to-be Father-in-law, named Connor Fitzgerald. He is known, and respected by many. The only twist to his ¿ordinary¿ life is that Connor has secretly been serving the CIA for more than twenty years! However, his boss, Helen Dexter, has held the position of director of the CIA for so many years, by abusing the CIA¿s power. Now, when the new American president is threatening Helen¿s authority over the CIA, Helen will do anything, including sacrificing something, to cover herself up, after committing numerous crimes, while abusing the CIA. Nearby, a crooked, Russian president emerges from the recent Russian election, trying to bring Russia back into its former glory. But when this new president¿s insanity kicks in, Connor must save the world from a nuclear war, while trying to save his family and his very own life. Being a novel written by Jeffery Archer, it is very appealing to many people, because Jeffery Archer is well known for his brilliant thriller novels. Jeffery Archer is known as one of England¿s leading authors and in my opinion, ¿The Eleventh Commandment¿ is another excellent piece of his writing. Personally, I enjoyed ¿The Eleventh Commandment¿ for two reasons in particular. The first is that the magnificent character, and the interesting plot are well developed. The story keeps you on the edge of your seat on every page. In fact, the story is so interesting, that after reading each page, you will be surprised to learn about something that will help you solve the complex puzzle of the evil genius, Helen Dexter¿s plan to corrupt the CIA, and the new Russian president, Victor Zermiski¿s plan of taking over the world. The second reason that I really enjoyed this book is because the ending is very shocking and surprising. In my opinion, it¿s so good, that no one would ever be able to predict what will happen. I really enjoyed reading ¿The Eleventh Commandment¿ because it is a very shocking, surprising and amazing book. I recommend that the book is good for adults and young adults. So in short, ¿The Eleventh Commandment¿ is a book with a great plot, great characters, and an amazing story overall. I would recommend this book to almost anybody, so I suggest that if you enjoy reading action-thriller books that you go and buy this book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
¿A brilliant thriller, that will greatly shock you, with it¿s cunning deception, betrayal, and lies.¿ This fictional thriller novel is about the ordinary life of a respectful American father, husband, and to-be Father-in-law, named Connor Fitzgerald. He is known, and respected by many. The only twist to his ¿ordinary¿ life is that Connor has secretly been serving the CIA for more than twenty years! However, his boss, Helen Dexter, has held the position of director of the CIA for so many years, by abusing the CIA¿s power. Now, when the new American president is threatening Helen¿s authority over the CIA, Helen will do anything, including sacrificing something, to cover herself up, after committing numerous crimes, while abusing the CIA. Nearby, a crooked, Russian president emerges from the recent Russian election, trying to bring Russia back into its former glory. But when this new president¿s insanity kicks in, Connor must save the world from a nuclear war, while trying to save his family and his very own life. Being a novel written by Jeffery Archer, it is very appealing to many people, because Jeffery Archer is well known for his brilliant thriller novels. Jeffery Archer is known as one of England¿s leading authors and in my opinion, ¿The Eleventh Commandment¿ is another excellent piece of his writing. Personally, I enjoyed ¿The Eleventh Commandment¿ for two reasons in particular. The first is that the magnificent character, and the interesting plot are well developed. The story keeps you on the edge of your seat on every page. In fact, the story is so interesting, that after reading each page, you will be surprised to learn about something that will help you solve the complex puzzle of the evil genius, Helen Dexter¿s plan to corrupt the CIA, and the new Russian president, Victor Zermiski¿s plan of taking over the world. The second reason that I really enjoyed this book is because the ending is very shocking and surprising. In my opinion, it¿s so good, that no one would ever be able to predict what will happen. I really enjoyed reading ¿The Eleventh Commandment¿ because it is a very shocking, surprising and amazing book. I recommend that the book is good for adults and young adults. So in short, ¿The Eleventh Commandment¿ is a book with a great plot, great characters, and an amazing story overall. I would recommend this book to almost anybody, so I suggest that if you enjoy reading action-thriller books that you go and buy this book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Jeffry Archer is one of th easiest novelists to read. The plot of this book may be a little stale, a lone agent avoiding the enemy. Some of whom are are on his own side. Connor Fitzgerald is a CIA hitman who obeys his director without question. Problem is she is not keeping to the rules and has set him up to protect herself from the wrath of the president. As you will gather this very English author has again set his work in the US system.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have to disagree with the other reviewers. I was really looking forward to this book after reading Jeffrey Archer's accolades on the cover, but I was sorely disappointed. I hope this isn't his best work, because it's not good. Sure, the plot is okay, and a couple of twists were unexpected, and yes, it's easy to read. Unfortunately, that's about the best I can say about it. The characters are one-dimensional. Connor Fitzgerald, the 'professional's professional,' fails to see several obvious pitfalls until he falls into them. This is an expert with 30 years of experience? The ex-CIA agent who follows Fitzgerald to Russia enlists the help of a street kid with ties to the Mafia. The kid persistently drives the agent crazy, but when the man's about to die he suddenly wishes he could leave the boy everything in his will. Where did that come from? A small error, sure, but it's just one of many similar flaws. Archer's writing style leaves much to be desired, too. The overuse of hackneyed phrases, like the stock of a rifle 'resting like an old friend against his shoulder,' shows an utter lack of imagination. Why is it that every time he mentions the President's pet piece of legislation he has to call it by it's full (and extremely long) name: The Chemical, Biological, Nuclear, and Conventional Arms Reduction Act? Once you've introduced it, what's wrong with The Arms Reduction Act? Getting paid by the word? Sorry, but this is not good writing.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is probably on of the best action thrillers you will ever come across.From the very outset Connor Fitzgerald is a very likable guy.And as you keep turning the pages this feeling grows on you.Besides Connor, Helen Dexter and agent Jackson are very well sketched chracters who spice up the book's content.But the the real bombshell is the ending where as usual Archer comes up with a trump that is in one word 'brilliant'. All in all a smashing effort at story telling.And by the way I got pretty bad grades because i was glued to this book during the time that I should have been studying. So to all of you who haven't read this book prepare to leave everything else aside!!!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
The best book I have ever read. Archer's mix of political and personal conflicts was amazing. I recommend everyone to read this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was wonderful.It was fairly easy to follow and just left you reading chapter after chapter. I couldn't put it down!I believe that this book is similar to many of Grisham's works.
Guest More than 1 year ago
The opening chapters feature unrelenting action as Connor tracks and kills a Colombian presidential candidate and starts a chain of events that could lead to a new Cold War. But, despite his ruthless background, Connor is not a cold and hollow plot device. He's an American Medal of Honor winner who is committed to his country, but also to his spiritual home, Ireland. Archer even pauses briefly to flesh out Connor's family life and the tensions of living with secrets that his wife and beloved daughter suspect but will never know. This character work pays off as the reader follows Connor through several nations and nearly as many identities. Gradually, Connor is caught in Russia between two power brokers: CIA director Helen Dexter and President Tom Lawrence. Dexter needs her 28-year veteran agent dead or 'disappeared' in a Russian prison. But President Lawrence also needs Connor so he can finally rid himself of Dexter's tacit control of U.S. foreign policy.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one of the most captivating novels that I have ever read. It holds your interest. The book is outstanding and fulfills what I want it to...entertainment. Is it real? Who cares...a real fun read.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was amused when I read Ross Anderson's review of this book. I did the same thing, though I finished a little sooner... by about 4 a.m. Obviously, this was a great book. I hadn't read Archer's writing in a couple of years, but he apparently still has the magic. I wouldn't call this his best book though. 'Not A Penny More, Not A Penny Less' is by far his most exhilarating work. If you haven't read any of his works... wow! I suggest you start with one of his short stories. 'A Twist In The Tale' comes to mind. Then, go to 'Kane & Abel'.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Simply the best fiction writer on Universe.
LucindaIl More than 1 year ago
Jeffery Archer has managed to once again make me draw a breathe and not allow me to exhale until I had read the last word! He is one of 4 author's who have the honor of making me hold my breathe during a great read. None of his books have ever disappointed me. The Eleventh Commandment held my concentration and interest throughout each word. My rath hit each person who dared to interrupt my reading session! Lock yourself in a room when you start this and don't come out until it is finished.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This was my first Jeffrey Archer novel. I know, I'm behind the times. Very good story - I'll start reading more of this author!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed The Eleventh Commandment by Jeffrey Archer. It had an interesting plot. Lots of action. And a good ending. I recommend this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
From the first page you are completely into this book. I loved it!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book leaves me speachless! It is his best since Kane & Abel. Do not pick it up if you plan on sleeping because it is not going to happen. It really is WOW!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As always Jeffrey Archer is at the top of his game. Great page turner.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book had me reading from airport bookstore in Paris all the way back home in Houston...I was reading through it so fast I stopped for a few hours so I'd have something left on my second flight...top shelf story...would make a solid movie!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved this book. Have recommended it to everyone I know. Jeffery Archer can write like no other.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I began reading this book , I knew something unexpected would eventually happen. As a matter of fact it did. The end ,unfortunatelly, was not as thrilling as I had expected it to be. However, I recomend this book, as Larry king said about it: 'There is not a better story teller alive', and that's true, I agree with him.
Anonymous 3 months ago
ThePolyBlog 11 months ago
PLOT OR PREMISE: Connor Fitzgerald is an assassin for the CIA. Black ops at its best. But when the CIA director orders a hit, and then wants to hide her involvement from the President, she tries to send Fitzgerald on an one-way futile assignment to Russia to prepare an assassination of the Russian Premier. Fitzgerald's ex-mentor gets involved and figures out the plan, but too late to save CF from getting caught. A couple of twists later, however, and Fitzgerald is back in the States with the same mission -- kill the Premier while he sits next to the President. . WHAT I LIKED: The storylines were inventive and well done. Not quite at the level of Clancy or De Mille, but well done still. The writing is first-rate and the story moves along at a good clip. . WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: The relations between the CIA and Fitzgerald, and between the CIA and the Oval Office are not sufficiently fleshed out, leaving the story as having a little too light of a touch for the genre. As well, a couple of the twists are too well-telegraphed and you see them a mile off. As well, a small twist at the end, although expected, is handled far too lightly for the likely reality of the situation. . BOTTOM-LINE: Story moves along at good clip . DISCLOSURE: I received no compensation, not even a free copy, in exchange for this review. I am not personal friends with the author, nor do I follow him on social media.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Birchclan
Anonymous More than 1 year ago