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The Secret Servant (Gabriel Allon #7)

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4.23  ·  Rating Details  ·  13,649 Ratings  ·  565 Reviews
A terrorist plot in London leads Israeli spy Gabriel Allon on a desperate search for a kidnapped woman, in a race against time that will compromise Allon's own conscience-and life...
Unknown Binding, 0 pages
Published August 1st 2008 by Findaway World (first published January 1st 2007)
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Christiana Moffa
Feb 03, 2008 Christiana Moffa rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Espionage fans, as usual!
I don't know what number this is in the Gabriel Allon series (I think the 9th?), but like all the other books Daniel Silva writes it contains a great deal of information about Middle Eastern politics and the U.S / England's relationships with countries like Israel and Saudi Arabia. Though Jewish himself, Silva writes with the knowledge that certain political alignments will never garner the outcome desired in the region: PEACE.

For any of you looking to learn more, and to read fantastic spy novel
...more
Les Aucoin
Jan 10, 2012 Les Aucoin rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: thrillers
My first Daniel Silva read was Portrait of a Spy. Enjoyed it so much, I couldn't wait to get into this one. The Secret Servant goes back a few years in the career of Gabriel Allon, Silva's art-restoring spy (what a combination!). I also noted that this work won the Publishers' Weekly Best Book of the Year award when it came out.

In terms of word craft, The Secret Servant did not disappoint. Silva has a command of the language that can, at its best, enthrall.

But by the time I got about halfway int
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Yngvild
Feb 13, 2010 Yngvild rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: espionage
I pulled The Secret Servant out of the bargain bin of my local bookshop some months ago because it ticked all the boxes: Israeli spy story set in Amsterdam and London. It was downhill from there.

Daniel Silva’s weakness is a tendency to be didactic. That need to over-explain becomes problematic when it results in such gems as the “Zuiderkirk church”, which even spelled correctly translates as “South church church”, or “mackintosh raincoat”, which is a “raincoat raincoat”.

The history and politics
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Mel Ostrov
Aug 30, 2014 Mel Ostrov rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Middle East Fiction/Nonfiction

This has got to be one of Daniel Silva's best in the Gabriel Allon series. Although well written,the predictable plot somewhat smacks of a potboiler. However, the expected conclusion of this story is overridden just by the excitement of getting there.
What makes this story stand out is its presently still timeliness in reference to the Islamic Jihad problem. Interspersed among numerous fast-paced short chapters are statements like "The Americans threw in their lo
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Marc
Aug 11, 2013 Marc rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Secret Servant is a highly readable, well-constructed international spy thriller. Although it was published in 2007, the book's subject is radical Islamic terrorism in Europe, so it retains a "ripped from the headlines" feel in 2013. The writing is crisp and precise; the plotting is expertly crafted. The story is somewhat complicated, but never overly so, as the author handles its twists and turns smoothly. The pacing is consistently taut, and the suspense never lets up.

Daniel Silva frames t
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Luan
Sep 08, 2011 Luan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I took a break from Silva's series and now I've back to it still pleased with the way the hero is not a superhuman and bad things happen to him. In fact, bad things happen to everyone which means that as a reader, even though this is a series, I'm not really sure if the kidnap victim gets saved. Silva's protagonist is a government secret ops worker for Israel. Even so, Silva presents both sides of the very difficult conflict that exist between the Israeli and Arab worlds. What he doesn't forget, ...more
Jim
Gabriel Allon returns in this seventh outing and once again his mission is to rescue a damsel in distress. The story opens in Amsterdam where a professor who has written a book on Muslim extremists is assassinated. This professor however happened to work for Ari Shamron and "The Office". Shamron sends Gabriel to Amsterdam to sanitize the professor's office of any link to his work with the Israeli intelligence agency. While in Amsterdam Gabriel receives a tip of the extremists next plot. This tim ...more
Jessica
Oct 10, 2007 Jessica rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Silva is the only one of this genre that I read and I love them. Silva and Christopher Buckley's Florance of Arabia are my main instructors on the Middle East today.

But this one was not my favorite. Dialogue was annoyingly cliched. Why does Silva always make the super Jewish spy rescue some well bred shiksa? Also found him more dogmatic than ever before. Can't deny it was a page-turner! After this, need something more edifying.
Andrew
Jul 25, 2012 Andrew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-book
NOTE: This review was written based on the Audio CD version.

Daniel Silva's "The Secret Servant" is the best "Book on Tape" that I have listened to in awhile. There have been times when I almost wish that my commute was longer or that we'd had some heavier traffic just so I could listen to more of the book each day!

Credit begins with Silva's novel - the pacing was fantastic. The mix between action and pauses, the characters & dialog, the overall plot were quite well done. I'll never know (no
...more
Julie Johnson
Oct 30, 2011 Julie Johnson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another great book! I enjoy these books immensely (came upon them quite by chance, picking one up at random at the local library--since then I've been completely hooked & I am now steam rolling my way thru them!).

Gabriel Allon is better than Bond. More human, more emotional, also, in a committed relationship. No bond groupies!

He faces defeat, turmoil, negativity, jealousy...his is not a glamourous life. He is such an enjoyable character, a reluctant hero but a hero nonetheless--one who is d
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David Feinstein
Mar 08, 2009 David Feinstein rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Daniel Silva has yet again written a novel that at the same time will entertain and scare the hell out of you!

In "The Secret Servant", Gabriel Allon, the avenging angel of Israel's formidable secret service, is back to do battle again with the ever-rising tide of radical Islam terrorism. Sent to Amsterdam on a seemingly routine mission to clean up after an assassinated undercover agent, Allon unwittingly uncovers an Al Qaeda-like plot which leads him to London and Elizabeth Halton, the daughter
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Nachman Kataczinsky
The Israeli not so secret secret agent is back with another adventure. There is a problem though. Like in “Moscow Rules” he is both smart and inexplicably stupid. Without disclosing too much of the plot and spoiling the enjoyment of the book: it is not entirely clear why he needs to follow some of the terrorist’s demands. Especially as they have no way of knowing whether he did or not. It is also not clear why he risks his life and the lives of others without a clear plan.

Al in all an enjoyable
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An Odd1
May 27, 2013 An Odd1 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Assigned to papers left by a recently assassinated professor in Holland, Israeli spy finds Muslim terrorist plot against American embassy in London. Authorities do not heed the 50s experienced operative's warning in time. When his near-save of the victim is splashed on front pages, he also becomes a target.

Main action is swift, villainous betrayals predictable, side-issues drag. I don't like the younger hottie who nags for marriage, nor care about internal office wrangling. If they are continui
...more
Kevin
Aug 07, 2015 Kevin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent. A new author for me but found the storyline kept me fully interested until the end. As an avid reader of the spy thriller genre I found Daniel Silva stacks up against my early favourites of Greene and Le Carre. Will be reading more.
Jeffrey
Jan 29, 2008 Jeffrey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Silva fans, spy thriller readers, people who like good reads
Excellent spy adventure novel featuring Silva's Israeli assassin Gabriel Allon. I read most of Silva's books over the summer when my library was closed and they start and have many similar elements. There is a terrorist plot, Allon is forced to give up his day job as an art restorer and take up the job. The first attempt at something fails but ultimately Allon is victorious.

Many of those elements are present in this tale of a kidnapping in London and Allons search for the kidnappers and the plot
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Denise
Dec 31, 2015 Denise rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4.5 stars! Lots of action and suspense. Loved the "operation" at the end. Another great read in a very solid series. Looking forward to Gabriel's next assignment!
Heather
Mar 29, 2011 Heather rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gabriel-allon
Truth be told, 4 stars is probably a bit generous. Silva is definitely my favorite "spy thriller" author so, in my opinion, his okay to good book is still better than the average thriller author's book. His middle of the series books like this one (number seven in the Gabriel Allon series) are rather forumlaic. The good news is they're still a fast paced, action packed (without being ridiculous) read with a very likeable lead character/Allon. His earlier and later books are great! Don't give up ...more
Karel Soeters
As a Dutch resident it always amazes me that the murder of Theo van Gogh has so much impact on the perception of Muslim influence on Christian Europe.

The Secret Servant was my first Gabriel Allon novel. A real pageturner until 80% of the book. A good and 'could-be-true' story quickly unfolds herself. The motivation for Gabriel to hunt the kidnappers is a bit weak, but who cares. Like some other reviewers I can also confirm that the last 20% is an ordinary predictable cat and mouse story. But I'd
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Don Bradshaw
Jun 02, 2010 Don Bradshaw rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Daniel Silva wrote a good spy book but even more gave readers a very real look at just how strong the Islamic terrorists have infiltrated Europe.
Israel's top spy,Gabriel Allon,becomes caught up in the kidnapping of the daughter of the U.S. ambassador to the U.K. by a cell of The Sword of Allah. The secret services of the U.S.,England, Israel and several other countries finally share information in a rescue attempt but run into different jihadist cells working in Europe. Read the book with an op
...more
 Olivermagnus
Jan 19, 2016 Olivermagnus rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Gabriel Allon is an art restorer who also works for Israeli Special Ops from time to time. When one of the department 19s agents in Amsterdam is killed by a Muslim fanatic, Gabriel is sent to look through his files and make sure nothing that leads back to Special Ops is in there. In the process of doing that, he gets involved in a trying to stop a plot to kidnap Elizabeth Halton, an American diplomat 19s daughter, followed by a string of terrorist attacks around the world. Gabriel almost stops t ...more
Leighton Mccormick
This was my "delayed" introduction to Daniel Silva, and an exciting, excellent, and most enjoyable book. Delayed, because I had not heard of Mr. Silva until he was mentioned on Facebook. In fact, The Secret Servant was selected "Best Book of the Year" by Publishers Weekly in 2007, and justifiably so. And now, I'm playing "catch up" to read what other Silva books I've missed, and to keep up with his current outputs. Which will account for at least half the books I intend to read during 2016!

Accor
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Brent
Jun 29, 2014 Brent rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Rather than give a detailed review of this book, let me discuss the series in general. This is the fifth Daniel Silva/Gabriel Allon book that I've read, having temporarily skipped #3 and #4 in the series. During a rainy summer in which I have more free time than usual, I will admit to being pretty much addicted to these books, but will attempt to read a few other books before returning to the series. It will be difficult to wait.

Despite these strong words of praise for the series, I have rated t
...more
Ferne
Jul 05, 2015 Ferne rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
After reading this novel, it brings to mind some of the same thoughts and feelings that I had after reading Nelson DeMille's "Night Fall." I went to look at my own book review for "Night Fall" and discovered that it began with these words: "This novel has been on my bookshelf to read for a long time. I’m not sure why it took me so long to begin reading it." I could say the same for this title.

But however long it has been on my bookshelf to read, it is a novel not only riveting and engrossing at
...more
Onka
Aug 19, 2012 Onka rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sk-cz, crime
Aj keď mi niektoré situácie prišli pritiahnuté za vlasy (napr. fakt, že Gabriel prežil už asi naozaj všetko), stále sa mi kniha nesmierne páčila. Obdivujem štýl autora a hlavne zbožňujem fakt, že ma kniha dokáže v momente vtiahnuť do deja a nedokážem sa od nej odtrhnúť. A napriek tomu, že všetky Silvove knihy majú rovnaký "vzorec" aj siedma kniha v sérii dokáže zaujať a vyvolať napätie u čitateľa. Klobúk dole pred Pánom spisovateľom. Už sa neviem dočkať ďalšej knihy ;)
pam
Sep 28, 2014 pam rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: highly-recommend
Another great read by Silva with the main character Gabriel, the brilliant Israeli spy who would rather be restoring paintings being called into action again. The American Ambassador to the Court of St. James' daughter is kidnapped by a dangerous terrorists organization. Gabriel undertakes a dangerous mission in trying to return her to her father.
I love Silva's books. This is my 5th one of the Gabriel series and am already starting on the next book.
Silva's real belief and one that I agree with i
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Nabarun
May 27, 2014 Nabarun rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Yet another Daniel Silva novel telling the tale of the worlds best art-restorer and part-time spy! And man, this really ranks in the highest echelons of spy thrillers which Silva wrote thus far! I think this novel is easily one of his best and breathtakingly fast paced. Just cannot stop, till you read the end.

Our favourite Israeli spy is not superman. So, Silva follows the same stereotype in this book as well. He first makes Allon lose the fight so that it feels that much special when he wins th
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Hermien
Enjoyable, but I preferred the earlier books which had more historical background. And do we really need to be told that our hero faces "the most dangerous man in the world", "the most feared man in the world", "the most famous man in the world", the most talented" etc. We know Gabriel would never waste his time on anything or anybody mediocre or just good enough!
Shawn
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kuv Patel
Jan 12, 2016 Kuv Patel rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book #7 of the Gariel Allon series follows the efforts of Israeli intelligence to rescue the kidnapped daughter of the American Ambassador. The story begins in the Islamic underworld of Amsterdam, and takes momentum through England, Denmark, and Egypt. Gabrial Allon, the master art restorer and assassin, works with his team in a frantic effort to find the kidnapped victim and prevent a catastrophic event. This is a fast paced thriller, with many twists and turns, and some unexpected events to ke ...more
Bruce Mohler
Apr 04, 2015 Bruce Mohler rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really like the Gabriel Allon series by Daniel Silva. This book, The Secret Servant, is the seventh in the series. There are a number of things to like about these books.

The characters grow (grow old in some cases) and their roles mature. They struggle with moral issues ("What makes us different from the enemies of Israel?" and "How do I handle a relationship with someone I need to work with but am attracted to?").

The venues change from book to book but are wonderfully detailed. In this novel,
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Madison Mega-Mara...: #16 - The Secret Servant 1 2 May 01, 2015 05:40AM  
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Daniel Silva began his writing career as a journalist for United Press International (UPI), traveling in the Middle East and covering the Iran-Iraq war, terrorism and political conflicts. From UPI he moved to CNN, where he eventually became executive producer of its Washington-based public policy programming. In 1994 he began work on his first novel, The Unlikely Spy, a surprise best seller that w ...more
More about Daniel Silva...

Other Books in the Series

Gabriel Allon (1 - 10 of 16 books)
  • The Kill Artist (Gabriel Allon, #1)
  • The English Assassin (Gabriel Allon, #2)
  • The Confessor (Gabriel Allon, #3)
  • A Death in Vienna (Gabriel Allon, #4)
  • Prince of Fire (Gabriel Allon, #5)
  • The Messenger (Gabriel Allon, #6)
  • Moscow Rules (Gabriel Allon, #8)
  • The Defector (Gabriel Allon, #9)
  • The Rembrandt Affair (Gabriel Allon, #10)
  • Portrait of a Spy (Gabriel Allon, #11)

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“I can be whoever you want me to be: CIA, FBI, DIA, an agency so fucking secret you've never heard of it before." -Gabriel Allon” 32 likes
“To Pakistan? Or Afghanistan? Or Wherever-the-fuck-istan?” 23 likes
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