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The Snare of the Hunter

3.77  ·  Rating Details  ·  463 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
Irina Kusak flees Czechoslovakia to seek her Nobel-laureate father in Austria. She finds herself drawn into a political intrigue with terrifying consequences. Is she the bait in a trap to snare her father, or is she playing a part in an even more insidious scheme with incredibly high stakes?

Set against the backdrop of peaceful Austrian countryside, Irina's nightmare journe

Paperback, 0 pages
Published August 12th 1983 by Fawcett (first published 1974)
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The Spy Who Came In from the Cold by John le CarréTinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy by John le CarréThe Day of the Jackal by Frederick ForsythThe Bourne Identity by Robert LudlumThe Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy
195th out of 703 books — 834 voters
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May 19, 2016 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: spy, thriller
I don't believe I've ever read anything by Helen MacInnes before but after The Snare of the Hunter, I know I will search for more of her work. This was such a well-written, nail-biting thriller. Basically, the premise is that, set in the Cold War period, a Czech national is smuggled out of Communist Czechoslovakia with the help of a group of amateurs. Her father, a renowned writer, had left many years ago and she wanted to be with him. Starting in Vienna they must get her safely to Switzerland, ...more
May 27, 2013 Miriam rated it liked it
Shelves: adventure, travel

Such a long road trip through lovely European locations; so little time to sight-see. Sad.
Simon Mcleish
Sep 17, 2012 Simon Mcleish rated it really liked it
Originally published on my blog here in October 2000.

The Snare of the Hunter is a competent Cold War thriller with minor literary aspirations (one of the characters, at the centre of the plot even if he never appears on stage, is an amalgamation of Alexander Solzhenitsyn and Václav Havel). Successful American music critic David Mennery is on the point of packing to travel to the Salzburg festival when an acquaintance turns up whom he hasn't seen for a few years, with a strange request. As a stud
Hilda Hansen
Mar 05, 2016 Hilda Hansen rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016
My reading project this year is to re-read all of Helen MacInnes's books. Or perhaps it will become a two-year project, because I also want to read other books. Ms. MacInnes is a master of the WWII era and cold-war era suspense genre. Even though I have read her books before, they send me to the atlas, to history websites, and to the dictionary many times as I make my way through each one. The Snare of the Hunter was written in the mid-1970s, and is set in the world of Czechoslovakia as it was t ...more
Jul 10, 2014 Amy rated it really liked it
A Cold War era story of defection, featuring some intelligent, capable, brave women as lead characters. What's more, this is a thriller written by a woman writer! Seriously, what's not to like?

It's a Cold War game of cat-and-mouse, and our protagonists receive very little respite from their apparatchik pursuers. No one knows who to trust and who to suspect, but they do know that there is a cat among the pigeons.

The story never rests too long in any one place--the reader and Irina (our defector)
Nov 20, 2008 Melissa rated it really liked it
If you want a good spy story, Helen MacInnes is great. This one about a girl trying to escape Czechoslovakia in the seventies.
Irina Kusak is the daughter of a Czech Nobel-laureate father and Communist mother. She is recently divorced from the ruthless and ambitious head of the Czech secret police Jiri Hrádek. After her mother's death in the 1970's, she makes it known to appropriate contacts that she wants to escape from repressive Czechoslovakia and join her father Jaromir Kusak in the West. A group of individuals dedicated to providing such assistance is assembled and starts Irina on a harrowing journey across the Cze ...more
Aug 22, 2014 Amanda rated it liked it
Typical MacInnes, set in Cold War Europe. The hero is a sexist, but the spy craft is good. I really like these 20th century spy stories where no one has a cell phone and they have to make things up as they go along!
Nov 16, 2015 Marilyn rated it liked it
Well written but could have been edited better. Nice to read a Cold War story again. It was simpler to know who your enemies were.
Allen Batchelar
Sep 14, 2015 Allen Batchelar rated it really liked it
A retro spy novel which is genre I seem to be into right now. A glass of scotch and a Helen McInnis novel is a relaxing experience.
Mar 06, 2016 Rebecca rated it really liked it
I'm nearing the end of my quest to read all of Helen MacInnes's books in order. I didn't quite make it in one year.
Rebecca Lewitt
Mar 12, 2013 Rebecca Lewitt rated it liked it
Shelves: mystery-suspense
Not MacInnes' most thrilling work, but suspnseful enough to keep me interested. I enjoyed her delve into the amateur/low-tech "spy" work. I always love a story where common sense wins out over technology and proffessionals. The romance left much to be desired for me. I liked the characters but I would have prefered a different romantic couple than she chose. Irina is nice and all, but I liked Jo. All in all, I'm glad I read it--it was a nice way to pass the time--but "neither five nor three" and ...more
May 19, 2016 Elizabeth rated it liked it
Jun 16, 2016 Denise rated it liked it
Slow to start but improved half way through
Sep 03, 2013 Linda rated it liked it
I always enjoy Helen McInnes' work, but the extramarital affair left me cold. It was made understandable, but during the whole rest of the book, it left a slightly sour taste of justification. The characters were believable (the plot was a little turgid with names that swept in and out), the tension was high....but she's too good of a writer to have to indulge in this plot gimmick.
Teresa Hintze
Mar 28, 2013 Teresa Hintze rated it really liked it
An oldie but goodie. I'm a little nervous to read Helen MacInnes sometimes because she has a tendency to kill off main characters that you love, but this was a suspenseful spy novel and all the people I loved survived. Big sigh of relief...
Nov 30, 2011 Veeral rated it really liked it
Shelves: thriller
I don't remember much of this book but I vaguely recall that I liked it very much at the time.

This is one of the books I plan to re-read in future (I still have a copy, though it is a bit worn out due to the passage of time).
Oct 12, 2013 Kathy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio
If I listened again I might rate it 3 stars. I wasn't paying enough attention to figure out good guys versus bad guys.
Dec 04, 2015 ChrisGA rated it it was amazing
Over 40 years old but still good suspense
Sue marked it as to-read
Jul 22, 2016
Tmbkyahoo.Com rated it really liked it
Jul 22, 2016
Sander Ruitenbeek
Sander Ruitenbeek marked it as to-read
Jul 21, 2016
Kate Joekel
Kate Joekel rated it it was amazing
Jul 20, 2016
O Babs
O Babs rated it it was ok
Jul 17, 2016
Trever Dodson
Trever Dodson rated it really liked it
Jul 12, 2016
Vicki Lamb
Vicki Lamb rated it it was amazing
Jul 11, 2016
anna marked it as to-read
Jul 11, 2016
Lisa marked it as to-read
Jul 09, 2016
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Helen MacInnes was a Scottish-American author of espionage novels. She graduated from the University of Glasgow in Scotland in 1928 with a degree in French and German. A librarian, she married Professor Gilbert Highet in 1932 and moved with her husband to New York in 1937 so he could teach classics at Columbia University. She wrote her first novel, Above Suspicion, in 1939. She wrote many bestsell ...more
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