Vodka Neat: A Faith Zanetti Thriller


Her motto:

Courage without equal

Truth without bullshit

Vodka without tonic

"Faith Zanetti is everyone's favorite messed-up war correspondent."

- Sarah Weinman, Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind

Vodka Neat features Faith Zanetti, a war correspondent with plenty of libido, good looks, a great sense of ...

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Her motto:

Courage without equal

Truth without bullshit

Vodka without tonic

"Faith Zanetti is everyone's favorite messed-up war correspondent."

- Sarah Weinman, Confessions of an Idiosyncratic Mind

Vodka Neat features Faith Zanetti, a war correspondent with plenty of libido, good looks, a great sense of humor, and a zest for life that never quits. She's the new Moscow correspondent for a leading newspaper—chosen for the job because she married a Russian when she was a teenager.

But the minute she steps on Russian soil, she is instantly arrested in connection with the murders, fifteen years before, of a couple from a neighboring apartment. She was drunk at the time, but surely not that drunk. In order to solve the mystery, what she needs to do is find the charming Russian black marketer she married as a nineteen-year-old. And when she finds him, her problems really begin.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Buoyant, smart, racy, and compelling. Anna Blundy has written a page-turner as intoxicating as Smirnoff."

- Tina Brown

"A mesmerizing thriller with a sexy and sharp heroine...Anna Blundy has vividly captured today's Moscow and its electric undercurrents."

- Walter Isaacson

"A drop of the hard stuff, administered tenderly by someone who's obviously been there."

- Christopher Hitchens

"Sharp and's impossible not to fall for Faith Zanetti, the kind of girl to make your mother shudder and your father drool. She's Bridget Jones on rocket fuel-strength vodka, but she's also cool, competent, and very good at getting herself out of calamitous situations. Above all, she has a great sense of humor—and this is where journalist Anna Blundy really shines, because it requires nifty footwork on the part of a writer to produce a funny thriller without diluting the thrills and trivializing serious issues."

- The Guardian (UK)

"Entertaining and original...what happens when chick lit meets the fallout from the Cold War. Vodka Neat is great fun...a witty page-turner which keeps you laughing and guessing, right to the end."

- Sunday Express (UK)

Publishers Weekly

British journalist Blundy's brilliant thriller provides sharp insights into the new Russia vs. the old Soviet Union. Sixteen years after reporter Faith Zanetti left Russia, she returns to Moscow as a correspondent for a London newspaper only to be charged with a double murder her shady estranged husband, Dimitri Sakhnov, confessed to committing back in 1989. Faith learns Dimitri has recanted, fingering her as the killer. But when Faith visits the psychiatric prison where Dimitri is incarcerated, she discovers "Dimitri" is actually Adrian Smith, an old American friend gone Russian whom Dimitri has framed. While Adrian, who soon dies under suspicious circumstances, tells Faith Dimitri is dead, Faith suspects otherwise, and with the help of her boyfriend, a New Yorkerstaff writer on assignment in Russia, she gets on Dimitri's trail. This bracing portrait of an alcoholic, chain-smoking career woman struggling to recover her balance will leave American readers eager for more of Faith Zanetti's adventures. (May)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Reviews
In the first of a U.K. series to be published in the United States, a British journalist in Moscow gets arrested for double murder. Faith Zanetti, just posted to Moscow as bureau chief of London's Chronicle, is awakened from her first nap in her new apartment by cops hammering on her door. Is she Vera Sakhnova? "Nyet," she says, still half asleep, and then immediately corrects herself. Fifteen years ago, she'd married noted black marketeer Dimitri Sakhnova when she was only 19. The marriage ended shortly thereafter, but Faith never got around to the finishing it off legally. Now, she's told, Dimitri is in a Russian jail, rescinding a confession that had specifically absolved her of any role in the grisly murders of Leonid and Yelyena Varanov, her neighbors. The resulting surge of interest, she insists, is unwarranted, but there's a complication. She doesn't really know what she did on the night the double homicide went down in the next apartment because she was dead drunk. Furthermore, the man in Oryol prison claiming to be Dimitri isn't. So what's going on? It takes Faith a while to find out, and when she does, it's a shock, yet not totally a surprise. A hard-drinking, foul-mouthed protagonist in Putin's Russia, occupying a landscape nearly as depressing as she is.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780312368630
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press
  • Publication date: 4/29/2008
  • Series: Faith Zanetti Thrillers Series
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.17 (w) x 8.08 (h) x 1.05 (d)

Meet the Author

Oxford graduate, single girl columnist, and former Moscow correspondent for The London Times, Anna Blundy has lived and worked in Russia on many occasions doing things from singing in a blues band in the early 1990s and making coffee at the ABC News bureau to interviewing Mikhail Gorbachev live in Russian on Radio Svoboda in 1998.

Anna is a critically acclaimed novelist whose first book, Every Time We Say Goodbye, told the story of her foreign correspondent father who was killed by a sniper in El Salvador in 1989. She now lives between London and Tuscany and, in her time, she has drunk a LOT of vodka, neat.

Her next Faith Zanetti thriller is coming soon from Thomas Dunne Books / St. Martin's Minotaur. Please visit her Web site at

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 9, 2008

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    A reviewer

    Sixteen years ago as a nineteen years old newlywed Russian Faith Zanetti emigrated from her home country to England to start over after the horrific scandal that destroyed her marriage though she has come home for short visits since she left town. She obtained work as a war correspondent for the London based Chronicle, but now her life has gone full circle. Her foreign editor Tamsin assigns the vodka guzzling cigarette smoker to be their new Moscow correspondent.-------------- However, she is stunned upon her arrival to learn her former spouse Dimitri Sakhnov who confessed to a murder in 1989 insists he never killed anyone he said he took the blame for his then wife Faith she is the killer. Faith visits Dimitri at the psycho ward only he is not there. Instead American Adrian Smith is being held. Adrian tells her Dimitri is dead and soon afterward so is he. Faith believes Dimitri lives and orchestrates events with help of her boyfriend she plans to find and confront the rogue she was once married to.------------- Faith is a great protagonist who holds together this strong Russian investigative thriller as her personal issues are as powerful as her need to bring Dimitri to justice, preferably without the Moscow police involved. The story line is fast-paced, but driven by Faith and the support characters especially the Muscovites as readers will be hooked by her seemingly solo (with her American boyfriend) belief that her ex is alive.-------------- Harriet Klausner

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