This is a book about the shadows of war. The figure of Le Carre looms large over it. Furst has Le Carre's way with character, situation and location, but his interest is more in the oblique and uncertain. The book suffers as a consequence. Because so little is revealed the story feels like there is little at stake. This may well be part of the point but it does not really make for an especially gripping read. It feels realistic and life-like but has all the faults of the real too.