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The Moscow Option (Paul Dark 3): Forget Bond. Forget Bourne. Discover Dark. Kindle Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
Thrown into the mix is Paul Dark, ex senior British Intelligence agent who has been working for the Russians. But the Russians no longer trust him and have him locked up in Russia, Dark himself is caught between the fact that he worked for the Russians, but also there are those in Britain who are very right wing and also have deadly plans.
So, the man with no friends or Country discovers something so serious that he makes a break for it and tries to find a way of warning the world. But how can he do it with nobody trusting him and the entire Russian State after him?
Hard to describe the sheer pace of these books, it is like the TV series 24 was set back in the 1960s! A fascinating time to place these stories and the blending in of real history just adds to the high standard of the plots and action.
Very well written, these are great thrillers.
So mea culpa, but what did I think of the book? What stood out was the excellent research. My only visits to Russia have been as a tourist, so I'm not able to judge all the detail personally, but it was obvious that Duns had worked diligently to make his story historically accurate and reasonably plausible. The trouble for me was that there wasn't a single character for whom I could feel much sympathy. Dark, the main character, was the only one with much development as a person. The others were two-dimensional place-holders. In principle, I ought to have felt very bad about what happened to the forger who provided Dark's fake documents. His actions were surprisingly generous towards Dark, a man he had never met before, but even so I didn't really learn enough about him to feel shocked or sad at his fate.
The central character was placed in what ought to have been exciting situations, but came across as surprisingly flat. In the end I didn't really care what happened to him or to anyone else.
I feel that Duns could become a very good writer, but, on the evidence of Moscow Option, he hasn't got there yet.
However upon reading said book you are always going to compare it to others, especially if you read a lot like I do.
In this instance the book right from the out set is not helped by the "forget Bourne, forget Bond, discover dark" splash on the front cover.
Dark? More a fading from twilight into a moonlit night.
Parts of the book are good but as you go on the introduced charachters willingness to help are truly unbelievable. " oh right if you say we are on the brink of war then me must be be. Take my car, and heres some money, anything else you need? Do you have time for a quickie with my wife?"
I am not disputing the authors knowledge of the cold war 60's, the players and the shenanigans that went on between the various combatants.
Its just that it has not crossed over into a well written novel.
It is especially let down by the willingness of the protagonists to spill their guts to enable the story to be concluded before Paul 'gloomy' Dark is about to be shot. It is acknowledeged as the cheap way of getting a story home.
Spy thriller? Read Charles Cumming, thats how its done.
But after reading the endnotes, and realising how many of the plot devices were not inventions of the author, but rooted firmly in fact and research, I was more impressed by what I had just read - and left with a sense of puzzlement as to why I had not enjoyed it more.
I think that although it is deftly plotted, and constructed from painstaking research, it is marred by the inclusion of too many standard tropes of the genre. All Soviet officials are brutal thugs, no one has any insights except the hero (and his nemesis), and the love interest is just along to be abused by the opposition (and will, of course, die in the end). It does not help that Paul Dark makes an unattractive protagonist. Fundamentally he is a selfish traitor, capable of personal as well as national betrayal, and betrays ruthlessly. His supposedly redeeming feature just makes him seem a fool, whose brain appears located rather too low down his body - since his vaunted love for various women does not appear to involve any great effort to stop them getting killed.
However, it should be pointed out that I read this book without realising that it was the third part of a trilogy. In this age of sequence writing, it is to Jeremy Duns' credit that this book stands alone on its own merits. It can be enjoyed on its own, without one being aware that it is, in fact. a sequel.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Not good. Very 6th form. Amateur writing. Ludicrous plot. Cliché after cliché. Totally unbelievable. Utter tosh really.
Sounded a great read, but within the first chapter it became clear that dispite the books claims , James Bond/Jason Bourne this 'aint! Read morePublished on 18 May 2012 by Biggles
Six months after the grim ending of Free Country/ Song of Treason, Paul Dark is languishing in a Russian cell, deprived of even the means to record the passing of time. Read morePublished on 26 April 2012 by Tim Stevens
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