Customer Reviews


 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An absolute gem..............
The first book I have read by this author and I was duly impressed. Set in 2011 at the time of the so-called 'Arab Spring' the author makes great use of 'flashbacks' and the narration by the various characters is skilfully done. Having travelled in Serbia and stayed in Novi Sad the descriptions of those places really ring true as do the evil machinations of the various...
Published 9 months ago by Mr. P. A. Page

versus
23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very Mixed Feelings!
I have been a fan of Olen Steinhauer since hist first book. Having now finished his newest book, The Cairo Affair, I have very mixed feelings about it. My overall feeling is that it is just an 'okay' read.

On the plus side, typical of a Steinhauer book, is that his characterizations in The Cairo Affair are top-notch, with all of his characters (of which there...
Published 15 months ago by Bobbewig


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very Mixed Feelings!, 20 Mar. 2014
By 
Bobbewig (New Jersey, USA) - See all my reviews
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Hardcover)
I have been a fan of Olen Steinhauer since hist first book. Having now finished his newest book, The Cairo Affair, I have very mixed feelings about it. My overall feeling is that it is just an 'okay' read.

On the plus side, typical of a Steinhauer book, is that his characterizations in The Cairo Affair are top-notch, with all of his characters (of which there are many) being fully developed and come across as very "real" people. What they are not, however, are likable; which, as a result, made me not care very much about what happens to them. Also, typical of a Steinhauer book, is a very descriptive sense of place, making me feel that I was right there in whatever location the characters are in.

For me, these plusses were offset by the following weaknesses, which resulted in my opinion that The Cairo Affair is okay enough to finish but not good enough to recommend that you rush out to read.

One weakness is that the plot, which almost from the onset, starts off with a bang (literally), never creates enough of a sense of excitement or suspense to make The Cairo Affair much of a page-turner. As a matter of fact, I, at times, found myself being bored with the book; to the point that on a couple of occasions I thought about giving up on it. A second weakness is that Steinhauer tells the story from the perspectives of a number of different characters who are all involved with each other, which tended to make too much of the story seem repetitive. In addition, Steinhauer has the story jump around too much between the present time and about twenty years or so ago, which, for me, tended to make the slow pace of the book even slower and, at times, a bit confusing.

I hope this review is helpful in deciding if The Cairo Affair is a book you'll want to read.

I received an advance ebook of The Cairo Affair from NetGalley and the publisher in return for an honest, unbiased review.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as author other work to date, 27 May 2014
By 
Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog "Falcata T... - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Paperback)
I normally love a good thriller and whilst I’ve tried Olen’s work before this one felt sub parr as a number of the concepts didn’t ring quite right with a lead character that really didn’t have me wanting to spend time with them. Its an OK book but when you expect something special from a known name, and it just doesn’t deliver then as a reader you feel that you’ve been not only short changed but cheated.

Don’t get me wrong for most readers, if they haven’t read Olen before they will probably enjoy it but for me, sadly this lacked a lot of the skills that have come to the froe for me in previous outings. All round a great disappointment but it was a book I was pleased that I stayed around for the ending purely to discover that it hadn’t improved.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An absolute gem.............., 19 Sept. 2014
By 
Mr. P. A. Page "Phil P" (Devon, England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Kindle Edition)
The first book I have read by this author and I was duly impressed. Set in 2011 at the time of the so-called 'Arab Spring' the author makes great use of 'flashbacks' and the narration by the various characters is skilfully done. Having travelled in Serbia and stayed in Novi Sad the descriptions of those places really ring true as do the evil machinations of the various security and counter-espionage forces.

On completion I immediately started reading 'The Tourist' by the same author.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, Olen delivers again, 1 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Kindle Edition)
Excellent, Olen delivers again. Fiendish plotting, great characters, intricate but credible story. It feels especially current with its setting and time period. It opens with a bang and it doesn't let go. Highly recommended.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Spies are Real People, 3 Nov. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Kindle Edition)
It's a spy story set against the background of the Arab Spring. Various Libyans disappear - is a secret CIA project under way? An American diplomat is murdered - but why? Is Serbian intelligence up to no good? What about Egyptian intelligence? Is the CIA bumping off its own?

It's very well written and plotted - and all very believable. It takes a bit of concentration, and who would have expected the hero to be a middle-aged man with a bad back?
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Impressive spy thriller, 30 Dec. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Kindle Edition)
My first Steinhauer novel and after finishing the novel I immediately downloaded the Tourist.

The Cairo Affair is a well plotted spy thriller that has plenty of twists and turns.
The narrative does jump around so the reader needs to concentrate but it's well worth the investment. It's also an interesting take on the Arab Spring revolutions and fans of Le Carre and
Cummings should enjoy this.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Hopeless.Avoid., 18 April 2015
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Paperback)
This is an awful book.It goes from nowhere to nowhere.It is utterly boring.
I got as far as page 150 (for that I deserve a Purple Heart and a Victoria cross in itself) and then just gave up.
I give it one star as I cannot give it any less.
The only page I can recommend is page 408-and that is because it is the last page .If you can get that far.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Losing the will to finish this book., 15 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Kindle Edition)
Struggling to continue reading this book after about 30 pages. I had reservations after a paragraph at the beginning referring to the use of a Ford Explorer in London, a model which has never been available in this country. Just shows a lack of research on behalf of the author which immediately lowers expectations.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Ok, passes the time if your plane's late but won't stick long in the memory, 3 Aug. 2014
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Paperback)
There are some good bits here but it all falls apart towards the end. Some suspense is created by realising early on that there's a dark event that happened in Yugoslavia in 1991 that somehow leaves the American couple at the centre of the story beholden to Serbian intelligence. When the event is finally revealed it's about as plausible as frost in Cairo and still less that a chance meeting twenty years later would spark the actions described.

That said, there are some good characterisations such as the idealistic Libyan- American, the likeable deputy head of Egyptian intelligence and the lack of inter-agency co-ordination on the US side comes across plausibly enough. The book does wobble a bit with the highly unlikely actions of the wife of the first murdered American. But I did like the telling of the story from different viewpoints which clarified things and helped with momentum of the book.

The book also has no more sense of place than a recounting of Cairo street names. I know Cairo reasonably well and must say the amount of walking the expats in this book do is extraordinary taking no account of the heat, the dust, the ease and price of taxis. So on each of the numerous occasions they walk I kind of had this memory of every walk I ever took being harried by ubiquitous taxi drivers looking for a fare. Sophie also takes public transport so as to be unnoticed - really? Possibly the best way for a Caucasian woman to draw attention to herself.

I was also left baffled by the role of the John character. His love interests and sideline as a language teacher just seemed like a different story to the one being told in the book. And the epilogue part of the book was weird. I shan't spoiler it but again it had me going really?

In sum, pleasant enough to while away an airport delay - which is just what I've done with it - but, now finished, one to leave behind rather than clutter my shelves with it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too convoluted for its own good, 7 April 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Cairo Affair (Kindle Edition)
A clever set-up. Lots of twists. But, finally, unconvincing. Not quite there although an enjoyable read. To be fair the events are so recent it is hard to see them clearly.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 3 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

The Cairo Affair
The Cairo Affair by Olen Steinhauer (Preloaded Digital Audio Player - 18 Mar. 2014)
Out of stock
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews