The Intelligencer

The Intelligencer

by Leslie Silbert
3.9 24

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Intelligencer 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 23 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In New York, London-based forensic accounting wizard Cidro Medina meets with former English Renaissance scholar turned sleuth Kate Morgan to discuss the corpse he found in his home. A thief broke into Cidro¿s home to steal a leather-bound volume of 16th-century intelligence reports written in cipher, but was trapped by cops so he chose poison instead of prison. Kate who is a deep operative for a United States Intelligence Agency investigates the sudden interest in the tome. --- In England Kate begins breaking the book¿s code and finds herself on the verge of not solving today¿s mystery, but a cold case involving the sudden death of Elizabethan most popular playwright Christopher Marlowe in 1593. She learns that Christopher lived a double life using his writings as a cover for his undercover espionage work to expose smuggling. Kate is also asked to look into an eleven million dollar art deal that triggered alerts of a possible black market sale. Billionaire art dealer Luca de Tolomei sold an antiquity to Iranian senior intelligence officer Hamad Azadi. Unbeknownst to Kate, she is the pawn of revenge by a person targeting her father, U.S. Senator Donovan Morgan. --- Though the story line is all over the place, THE INTELLIGENCER is a fine thriller that rotates chapters globally mostly in the present, but also includes stops in the late sixteenth century. Because of the constant shifts of focus, the story line takes time to develop; thus the action-packed thrill seekers might find the secondary plotting tedious while those in the audience who appreciate insightful filler will enjoy the sidebars. Leslie Silbert writes an interesting tale with a wonderful premise that is overloaded but fun to follow.--- Harriet Klausner
Guest More than 1 year ago
Overall it was well written and interwove two interesting mysteries. However, I would have preferred an introduction, Part I-Marlowe; Part II Kate Morgan and Part III the connections between them. Flip-flopping chapters, many of them just a few pages long, was annoying. I may reread it by reading the Marlowe chapters and then the Kate Morgan chapters and suggest other readers try the book that way.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Well written, and I learned a lot historically from it, fiction or otherwise.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read this novel when it first came out but decided I wanted to revisit it--and I'm glad I did. This is smart, well-written spy fiction with a delicious twist for English geeks like me: the parallel story to the contemporary mystery is set in Elizabethan England featuring that most fascinating of engimas--Christopher Marlowe. If you read Silbert's "afterword" (and everyone should) she explains the balance between the factual and what she "twisted" to some degree and she explains the historical background for those unfamiliar with Marlowe and/or Tudor England. However, the problem for me is that there are simply too many plots and threadlines going at once--when they converge it generally makes sense--but it takes far too long for it to happen. In the meantime, it's easy to get really frustated with the many characters, red herrings and plot threads. Then when Silbert ties it together, I found myself having to go back in a couple of cases and remind myself of how I got to where I was. Also, while there are some fun twists--my favorite is Marlowe at the end--some of this is just terribly obvious. The most annoying of those is the identify of Acheron, the captured spy--that just hits you over the head on the first page it's introduced. Having that be less predictable would have been nice. Some reviewers here expressed frustration with the ending--I had no problems at all with the ending; the ending is clear in terms of the Tudor/Marlowe mystery and the contemporary one--BUT it is obvious that the ending has been set up for a sequel--there are many loose ends in relation to Kate, Rhys, Donovan, Jack and etc. Even the author's "Q/A" at the end of the book reveals Silbert working on a follow up. So my question is WHERE is the follow up? Good grief, this novel was published around 2004--2005; this novel shows a great deal of promise for a fun, smart series--but it's been so long that if/when Silbert does publish the sequel will anyone care? It all seems like a bit of a waste.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
firesidereader2 More than 1 year ago
I actually enjoyed this one. It was interesting. I read it some time ago, but would like to read more by this author.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I enjoyed this book and raced to the end. I thought there were too many characters so at times I had trouble keeping track of who was doing what. I did not know anything about 1500 London so I learned a little.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This novel was full of great suspense, action, and mystery... that led up to..... nothing. do not read this book. it is horrible. the ending makes you want to chuck it out your window, just because it is so retarted. if you like good books, then dont read this one.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ok, so I picked this book up on a whim thinking it would be a good page turner, and it was up to a point. I liked the present day aspect of the novel more so than the past chapters. I don't know what it was but they just seemed more smooth to me. The plot is sometimes confusing because of sudden shifts, but these shifts were usually well marked so you could get back into the story. The characters are not exactly flat so that was a plus. I don't like how Silbert had Marlowe survive, it made the novel seem a bit to perfect ending. The ending of the novel was not well put either in my view. The reader is left with to many loose ends like de Tolomei and the boyfriend. What exactly happens to them. I would suggest this novel to friends, but I would hint to them the ending is not spectacular. I will still look forward to the next novel from Silbert though.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I thought I was an excellent book. A quick read but really good. I thought the characters were awesome. I really enjoyed the two different time periods aspect. I also liked the twist Marlowe ending.! I strongly recommend it!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a good story and interesting mix between the present and the 16th century Elizabethan england. The mystery was along the lines of Dan Brown/Katherine Neville. A slightly predible ending but still excellent story with well developed characters.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I normally take mystery novels for what they are, cheap thrills, but this book severely dissapointed me. I thought the ending, while predictable was unrealistic in the books context. The characters were so generic also, either they all seemed alike, or just did not fit their roles. I thought she did a decent job with the setting of early England, which is why I gave it 2 stars. But I honestly feel that I wasted a few hours of my life reading it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This talented young author has written a thriller. No skimming needed here every word is worth reading and every page a must. The tension builds to a satisfying ending. I can't wait for the next book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This novel had the same obnoxious overly didactic tone as the da Vinci Code;like spending time with a know-it-all teenager. Although, I have to say Silbert employs some clever, if not subtle techniques for explaining everything for the culturally impaired. My favorite so far is the discussion of the island of Capri being a sin bin. Kate is told that the suspect has a house on Capri and she says it figures, whereupon her co-worker asks why. Kate sensed that her boss wanted to exercise his expertise in classics history, so she let him explain. Then, of course, we get the requistite tidbit of trivia The Kirkus Review is right on, although you can't see it unless you click on 'See All Eight 'From the Critics''
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved Leslie Siebert's deft combination of Marlowe's Elizabethan England and the quest of modern day scholar-turned-PI Kate Morgan. The continuously interconnected storyline was quite entertaining. I was never distracted moving between eras. There were moments when I couldn't wait to get to the next Kate chapter then couldn't wait to continue Marlowe's story. This book has been on my 'Recommend to Others' list since finishing it. I am already looking forward to Silbert's next Kate Morgan novel.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I flew through this novel. I've never read a thriller that was so well written, creative and thought provoking. I loved reading about Elizabethan spies, ciphers and black-market arms dealing, paired with a parallel espionage tale set in the present day. You learn so much turning these pages while being entertained non-stop...I was especially fascinated by the discussion between the modern-day heroine, Kate Morgan, and her client, about which was more dangerous to pursue in the Renaissance: state secrets or God's secrets, and why. Marlowe got killed for one of those dangerous pursuits, Kate says, but which? That's one of the mysteries revealed in the last chapters, as Kate deciphers Marlowe's final intelligence report. Speaking of which, I thought the way she figured out that particular code was clever and really interesting.
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I heard the author on the radio talking about her real-life experiences as a PI, her ex-CIA boss, and U.S. attorney father, I decided to give this book a try. I like authenticity, and too many thrillers are painfully over the top...you know, so implausible you roll your eyes. But this one, wow! I loved it. It's got a very authentic, informative feel, but is also inventive, fresh and exciting. Kept me up till dawn. The Marlowe chapters come to life so vividly. Really enjoyed Marlowe's banter with Tom Walsingham and the tavern whore, as well as the way he was inspired to start writing 'Hero and Leander.' And learning so much about the Elizabethan underworld--spies and spymasters, con men, codes, ciphers, etc was fascinating. Very cool how the present day chapters paralleled those set in the past--you get to see Marlowe and Kate get their espionage assignments one after the other, begin them, get in danger, etc, in alternating chapters. And I loved Kate, found her more likable and believable than other mystery/spy heroines I've come across, probably because she's modeled so closely on the author... Whose ex-CIA boss endorsed the book so glowingly that I trust the PI know-how, international intrigue, and intelligence aspects, which made the whole reading experience much more fun for me. Lastly, I was thrilled that the endings to both storylines were unpredictable, clever and witty--for me, totally satisfying. Which is so rare in this genre. And when you're done (and only then because it contains spoilers), definitely stick around for the author's note. It tells you how most events from the sixteenth-century chapters are based on historical evidence, and explains something really interesting about the structure of the novel.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is somewhat of a disappointment for me. Kate Morgan, the main character is so predictable, it is kind of funny in some respects. The rest of the characters are so thin (including Marlowe)that they all seem to meld together. The book is organized by flip flopping chapters from the the present (Kate's time) and 16th century England (Marlowe's time). I found myself so bored by Marlowe's story that I wanted to just skip over them. In an interview, the author admits that she had never written fiction before and was actually approached by an agent to write this book. It shows. The writing leaves little to be desired. The potential was there, and I think with a little practice the author could do very well writing in this genre since she has some inkling of how to build a suspense novel. But maybe she should have waited and practiced a little bit longer....
Guest More than 1 year ago
I was trapped into reading this and was shocked at how quickly I was sucked in. Great Characters!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I started the book expecting to like the 'thriller' elements and intrigue. And I did. Big time. But what surprised me was how attached to the characters I became... particularly Marlowe! I'm going to go buy his plays.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this book blew me away. it's that rare combination of page-turner/spy thriller that actually makes you feel smarter for having read it. the way she weaves jet-set modern NYC private-investigator hijinks with brooding elizabethan england -- i couldn't put the book down. maybe it's the author's real-life PI experience...her harvard education...her good looks...whatever it is, keep your eye on leslie silbert. highly recommended.