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Tanner's Twelve Swingers (Evan Tanner #3)

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3.73  ·  Rating Details ·  411 Ratings  ·  31 Reviews
Sometime spy Evan Tanner has accepted impossible assignments for many reasons: money, thrills, to have something to occupy his waking hours (twenty-four of them every day, in fact, since battlefield shrapnel obliterated his brain's sleep center). But this might be the first time he's put his life on the line . . . for love.

Tanner's agreed to smuggle a sexy Latvian gymnast—
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ebook, 240 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by HarperCollins e-books (first published 1967)
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(showing 1-30)
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Nooilforpacifists
This is the only truly excellent follow-up in the series beginning with the (mis-titled) "The Thief Who Couldn't Sleep". These are comic espionage novels, with similar mocking anti-Cold War elements Terry Southern was said to have added to the "Dr Strangelove" script. Here, like the first Tanner book, a series of wildly improbable events, and bad luck turned good, allow Tanner to visit Macedonia, walk all the way to Estonia, and return via Alaska gathering (along the way) his version of the Dirt ...more
Vikas Datta
Jan 02, 2016 Vikas Datta rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the funniest of the series... that scene at Riga is pure bedlam
Craig Childs
Feb 26, 2017 Craig Childs rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I have a soft spot for the Evan Tanner books. Partially because I unexpectedly find myself living in Eastern Europe for a few years, so I have had occasion to visit many of the same countries and cities where Tanner’s adventures occur. In fact, Evan visits my new hometown Krakow, Poland in this book.

The novels are also funny, culturally insightful, and entertaining in their right.

In his third novel, Tanner goes to Latvia to help a friend’s girlfriend defect to America. Along the way he collects
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K
Nov 29, 2016 K rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I generally enjoy the work of Lawrence Block, as he's a terrifically talented writer. This was my first foray into the Evan Tanner series (I've wholeheartedly enjoyed several of his other series), and was just a bit disappointed. The story was farfetched and grew more so with each chapter. However, due to his talent, the author salvaged (for me, at least) the book with some laugh out loud scenes, making fun as it were, of the ludicrous situations he'd created for his rather over the top protagon ...more
Greg
Nov 02, 2014 Greg rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The third book in the remarkably remarkable Evan Tanner series is highly entertaining, supremely educational, and relatively complex. Considering Tanner’s gradual metamorphosis from everyday Espionage King to an alternative Captain America, however, one should not be surprised at the latter. After deciding early on that the sight of his new born son was enough of an incentive to risk death (and of course, it is!) he turns down the request of his “employer” to destroy a political uprising in Colu ...more
Michael
Definitely as readable as the other Block books I've read, "Tanner's Twelve Swingers" wasn't quite as focused. I enjoyed reading about Tanner's romp across Eastern Europe. Evan Tanner makes it with women in every country he enters, finds immediate, random solutions to all obstacles in his way, and in such a short book, none of it gets old. I don't know if I'll be reading another Tanner book for awhile - I think there are many - but its good to know there's a capering, sleepless spy out there to ...more
Eric_W
Nov 30, 2008 Eric_W rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You may remember Tanner from previous reviews: the spy who can’t sleep. This novel takes place earlier than the one I had read and Block provides a more detailed explanation of just how Tanner got himself into this position (The Thief Who Couldn’t Sleep is the first in the series and, naturally, has the most detail). Besides the small pension he gets monthly from the government for the head injury that resulted in his inability to sleep, Tanner writes term papers for hire for those students eith ...more
Ed
Jan 08, 2013 Ed rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adventure, espionage
#3 in the Evan Tanner series. Evan Tanner is Lawrence Block's spy who doesn't sleep - ever since a head injury suffered during the Korean War. In this 1967 entry, his boss (of an unspecified Federal agency) wants him to head for Colombia to head off a popular revolution. Being in favor of the revolution, Tanner pleads an urgent need to go to Latvia - a friend has asked for Tanner's help in getting his girlfriend from behind the Iron Curtain. On the way to Latvia, he stops off in Macedonia to vis ...more
Ann aka Iftcan
Oct 02, 2007 Ann aka Iftcan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: people who like humour
Ok, I admit it--this was my first Tanner book, and I just loved the idea of a man who could speak so many languages. His misadventures are always great, since he tends to be fairly clueless and just bulls along. He starts this book out trying to get a friends girlfriend out from behind the Iron Curtain in order to avoid doing a job for the secret agency that THINKS he works for them. He winds up--rescuing the girl--plus 11 other gymnists from her troop, getting a disident out of Chekaslovakia, s ...more
Steve
May 03, 2011 Steve rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of Block's evan tanner books. I liked the story. Sometime spy Evan Tanner has accepted impossible assignments for many reasons: money, thrills, to have something to occupy his waking hours (twenty-four of them every day, in fact, since battlefield shrapnel obliterated his brain's sleep center). But this might be the first time he's put his life on the line . . . for love.

Tanner's agreed to smuggle a sexy Latvian gymnast—the lost lady love of a heart-sick friend—out of Russia. With the Cold W
...more
Bob
Jan 31, 2010 Bob rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The spy who could not sleep is off on another venture to try to get a gymnast out of Latvia (this is before the breakup of the Soviet Union) for a Latvian/american who is in love with her. On the way he stops to see his son for the first time in Macedonia. As he makes his way north to Latvia he seems to accumulate baggage and people till in a comedy of errors he arrives at his last stop before the US with 15 people in tow. a quick, light read in the humorous mode.

ISBN - 1-58547-130-5, light susp
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Brendan
Nov 29, 2010 Brendan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thriller
It's certainly an easily readable book. The plot flows well, with something always happening or about to happen. Evan Tanner is a unique character.

But I was disappointed a bit. Things got silly near the end. And though there was a lot happening, I never really felt connected to it emotionally. I guess I expected more from the guy who wrote Mona.

Anyway, I found this passage interesting, for a book that was first published in 1967:

"... the author made a rational yet impassioned plea for the disso
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Glenn Younger
Jan 26, 2014 Glenn Younger rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Evan Tanner has become more experienced in book three, but for a good reason. What starts off as a hair brained idea to rescue one Lithuanian gymnast in the name of true love - not for Evan Tanner, but for his friend - snowballs into an entire entourage of fifteen, plus miscellaneous manuscripts and documents that illegally cross borders of Eastern Europe of the sixties, and ultimately get home via a Russian test plane and one crazy pilot.

Lawrence Block did it again: fast paced synchronicity, o
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Glenn
One of Block's earlier works, about a spy named Evan Michael Tanner who caught a piece of shrapnel during the Korean war that destroyed the sleep center in his brain, causing him to no longer require sleep. This one is about Evan's attempts to smuggle a female Latvian gymnast out of Russia during the Cold War so she can be reunited with her lover, but of course there are complications along the way. Decent read. I surmise that just like many of you, if my sleep center was destroyed I'd use part ...more
Gwenette
Aug 17, 2014 Gwenette rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I chose this book based solely on the title. My mother's maiden name was Tanner, and I hoped just to have a fun read. It was okay. The writing was not bad, but the narrator said things I would never expect a man to say (or to be written by a man). The story was okay -- better toward the end than the beginning.

I read another book in this series afterward, and I was sort of disappointed. I probably won't read any others.
Csrabb
May 28, 2012 Csrabb rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Again Block has turned a possibly long and tedious story into a great adventure. He uses humor and witty quips throught the book. Tanner having a wry outlook on things and people around him keep the story flowing and enjoyable.
Bhanu
Apr 20, 2014 Bhanu rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Evan Tanner, a man with a good heart. Actually, he was a man with connection with diplomats all over Europe, Lativa, Yougloslavia, Russia, Poland, Greece, England. This particular book Tanner's Twelve Swingers is a must read adventure. Enjoyed it
Ali Shahandeh
It's a light and entertaining read, and has enough action and dramatic ups and downs that grip the readers. specially for me who obsessed with cold war era.
I recommend it for those whom has the same interests or may be looking for Sth easy to read.
Sophia
Sep 28, 2016 Sophia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
这本的画面感不知为何总让我想到《虎口脱险》那样的老喜剧片,虽说除了开着飞机逃跑之外,再没什么相似之处了。不睡觉的谭纳这回酒后误事,夸下海口要帮朋友与爱人团聚——具体来说,就是从拉脱维亚把一个遭变相软禁的漂亮体操运动员偷渡到美国去。事实证明,“轻装上阵”也是一面巨大的flag。在从马其顿到波兰到立陶宛到拉脱维亚再到阿拉斯加的过程中,谭纳的依次领取了写禁书的南斯拉夫学者、拉脱维亚未来的女王(幼年体)、体操美女和她妹妹、她们的另外十名队员,以及想去美国玩爵士乐的苏联飞行员,外加身上捆着的禁书文稿和密信,还有鞋跟里的两卷胶卷——交任务的时候,一定能升很多级。
Darth
May 10, 2012 Darth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another, and perhaps least likely Evan Tanner book I have read. Still it is a good time, and goes by VERY quickly.
Muhammad Gibran
Evan Tanner alwaya make me laugh. you got action, adventure, and plenty of comedy.
Kevin Connery
Aug 24, 2009 Kevin Connery rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
Not as good as his later works, it's still a fun read.
Eliana
A hit man who has a therapits and who ends up as hero/protagonist? You got it!
Kelly
Jun 23, 2011 Kelly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humorous, mystery, europe
Think a much more tongue in cheek James Bond with very little sex.
S.R.
Jan 16, 2011 S.R. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to S.R. by: Mike
Ha ha.
Martha
Feb 02, 2010 Martha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Like clowns piling out of a mini car, Tanner's situation gets complicated in a ridiculously funny way.
Spinster
Mar 20, 2012 Spinster rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Spinster by: previous books by the author
Shelves: mystery
I think I need to take a break from the series. Each one is too much like the other one. I am anxious to see what happens to the kid he rescued.
David Highton
Sep 21, 2016 David Highton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The third Tanner and another set of Cold War travels through Eastern Europe with our accidental spy - tremendous fun
Denise M.
Sep 27, 2009 Denise M. marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: block-lawrence
AKA: Sheldon Lord, Jill Emerson, Paul Kavanaugh, Chip Harrison, Lawrence Block
Christine Flanigan
Christine Flanigan rated it really liked it
Dec 11, 2012
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Lawrence Block has been writing crime, mystery, and suspense fiction for more than half a century. He has published in excess (oh, wretched excess!) of 100 books, and no end of short stories.

Born in Buffalo, N.Y., LB attended Antioch College, but left before completing his studies; school authorities advised him that they felt he’d be happier elsewhere, and he thought this was remarkably perceptiv
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More about Lawrence Block...

Other Books in the Series

Evan Tanner (8 books)
  • The Thief Who Couldn't Sleep (Evan Tanner, #1)
  • The Canceled Czech (Evan Tanner, #2)
  • Two For Tanner (Evan Tanner, #4)
  • Tanner's Tiger (Evan Tanner, #5)
  • Tanner's Virgin (Evan Tanner, #6)
  • Me Tanner, You Jane (Evan Tanner, #7)
  • Tanner on Ice (Evan Tanner, #8)

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