Jake's Reviews > A Death In Vienna

A Death In Vienna by Daniel Silva
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Sep 16, 11

bookshelves: espionage
Read in September, 2011

The final work in Daniel Silva's Nazi troika of the Gabriel Allon canon (along with my favorite "The English Assassin" and "The Confessor") is another steady read. What I appreciated about this one is that there isn't as much over-the-top violence or romance, rather a gradual build up to the conclusion (which I still can't decide if I liked or not but I liked the book enough to forgive). Silva writes intelligent thrillers and yet they are very well-paced and readable. I've got the next book in the Allon series ready to go. However...

This is sticking with me...

Recently, having seen "The Debt," the movie on Mossad agents tracking a fictional Nazi war criminal, one critic wondered if that subject lent more importance, more weight to what was basically a run-of-the-mill thriller/spy movie.

How does this relate to Gabriel Allon?

Like the critic, I wonder if the importance of the subject inflates the suspense of the Allon series a little bit. For instance, while I liked the first installment ("The Kill Artist"), I really wasn't that impressed with what was basically another take on the ancient "spy vs. spy" genre (and as I have stated in my reviews of the other Allon novels, what got me into the series is Silva's masterful "The Unlikely Spy"). Whereas, in these past three books, Gabriel is fighting Nazis, thus giving the stories a more emotional gravitas. Where there might have been some sympathies with the Palestinian side in "TKA", you're simply not going to get any ambiguity of Jewish agents tracking down Nazi ghosts. Not that I mind, these have been the strongest three books of the series so far. I just hope that future Allon works that don't rely on dying WWII subplots are still as compelling.
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