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Agency Rules - Never an Easy Day at the Office

(Agency Rules #1)

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4.21  ·  Rating details ·  350 ratings  ·  88 reviews
Alternate cover edition of: ASIN B00HUZOED2

Celebrated as a ragtag force that defeated and broke the Soviet Union, no one predicted the Mujahideen would bring with them a plague that would spread like wildfire through Pakistan in the years to follow. When the battle-worn fighters returned with no enemy or war to fight, they turned their sights on the country that had been t
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Kindle Edition, 273 pages
Published January 16th 2014 by Dead Drop Books (first published January 1st 2014)
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Khalid I am working on an audiobook version, but I'd like to get the next book of the series published before we move in that direction.

I am planning on…more
I am working on an audiobook version, but I'd like to get the next book of the series published before we move in that direction.

I am planning on doing audio in Urdu, Pushto (Pakistani languages) and English.(less)
Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy by John le CarréThe Bourne Identity by Robert LudlumThe Spy Who Came In from the Cold by John le CarréThe Day of the Jackal by Frederick ForsythThe Hunt for Red October by Tom Clancy
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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
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4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  350 ratings  ·  88 reviews


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Karen Prince
A gripping read:

I thought that this was going to be quite a difficult read for me because on top of the plot complexity of a spy novel there would be the unfamiliar names and places because it was set in Pakistan. So I started off with my laptop beside me open to Google Maps and Wikipedia only to discover that the story was delivered in such an easily digestible way that I hardly had to refer to either. There were a lot of unfamiliar names of people and places at first but they started to sort t
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Christoph Fischer
"Agency Rules - Never an Easy Day at the Office" by Khalid Muhammad is a truly great spy thriller. Set in a modern day Pakistan it tells the chain of events set in motion by a terror attack in Karachi. Politicians, the army and the state secret service agency all have their own ideas as how to respond or retaliate for the offence. But it is our hero Khamal who goes in to do the work.

Pakistan is a perfect setting for this gripping thriller full of action and suspense. The country's complex histor
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Stefania Mattana
The first time I read the subtitle of Khalid Muhammad's Agency Rules - Never An Easy Day at the Office, I thought it was about a spy comedy. I was wrong.

Agency Rules is a past faced thriller that made me turn the pages with no pause. Set in Pakistan, the country where Muhammad lives, the story is told by using the native point of view - not common among the usual spy stories where the Americans are always the heroes. In fact, the main character is Kamal Khan, a "normal" soldier who quickly will
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Samra Muslim
Apr 01, 2014 rated it really liked it
Not sure what I was expecting when I got a copy to read and review the book - but now that I am done reading it, found it to be a great edge of seat spy thriller which had me glued on throughout !

Not sure many authors in Pakistan have ventured this genre - but definitely no book matches the pace at which Agency Rules goes! The protagonist is Pakistan's James Bond - aka an ISI agent - and the story of him going undercover the catch the 'bad guys' and ending up finding more is at pace with any sp
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Norm Clark
Jan 02, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
“Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day at the Office” by Khalid Muhammad is an extremely well plotted and well written spy novel. We follow his protagonist’s journey from simple soldier to a black ops agent and discover a quagmire of governmental inefficiency to deal with the negative groups in Pakistan: gangs, terrorists, Sheiks, etc.

The hero, Kamal Khan, uncovers a terrorist operation with a large training facility and a huge cache of arms. His objective to neutralize them is complicated by the gro
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Bob Rector
Feb 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Khalid Muhammad's “Agency Rules” is a spy thriller that takes place in Pakistan's spook center instead of the ones in London or Langley, or Tel Aviv. Like most Westerners, I know little to nothing about Pakistan's political structure and infighting, so I tossed all that aside and concentrated on the story. Being a writer, that's something I DO know about.

Khalid Muhammad is a gifted storyteller. His lead character, Kamal Khan, is a highly trained fearless fighter and ruthless interrogator, just a
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Christoph Fischer
Jan 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"Agency Rules - Never an Easy Day at the Office" by Khalid Muhammad is a truly great spy thriller. Set in a modern day Pakistan it tells the chain of events set in motion by a terror attack in Karachi. Politicians, the army and the state secret service agency all have their own ideas as how to respond or retaliate for the offence. But it is our hero Khamal who goes in to do the work.

Pakistan is a perfect setting for this gripping thriller full of action and suspense. The country's complex histor
...more
Wasio Abbasi
Dec 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is probably the first spy thriller fiction I have ever read. Keeping everything else apart, the most striking feature of the story was break-neck speed at which the story progressed and we saw everything unfold from the eyes and perspective of an ISI asset. Kamal Khan, the protagonist of the story, moved from a army sniper to a SSG commando and then an ISI spy. As the story progressed, he was a spy, Jihadi and possible double spy, depending upon the perspective of the various stakeholders.
T
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Angie Martin
Jun 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing
**I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange for my fair and honest review.**

“Agency Rules – Never an Easy Day at the Office” by Khalid Muhammad is not the type of thriller I normally go for in reading material, but being a fan of some spy thriller television and movies, I thought I would give it a go. I was not disappointed. The book was so fast-paced I thought my head was spinning as I tore through the pages. I really felt like it was a movie unfolding before me. The description
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Waheed Rabbani
Feb 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recently a number of spy thriller and espionage novels set in Pakistan have appeared on the market. While those deal mostly with “terrorism” in Pakistan, following the 9-11-2001 events, Khalid Muhammad’s debut novel is somewhat unique, in that it covers the rise of the Taliban during the period after the withdrawal of the Soviet forces from Afghanistan up to the late 1990s, thereby getting to the root cause of the issues. Khalid notes in his introduction, “… But Pakistan is so much more than the ...more
Ms. Ali Cat
Update!

Spy thriller author Khalid Muhammad give us an incredible view through the eyes of anti-hero Kamal Khan from Agency Rules: Never An Easy Day In The Office. This Hashtag guest blog from the prompt: The Story of a Lion or a Lamb, is a great introduction to the character's view of the world around him and his place in the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence as an operative. Kamal is a strong and brutal man looking to flit in and out of lives knowing all the secrets they are trying to hide.
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Danielle
Having read many spy thrillers set in and around America, it was a refreshing change to read Khalid Muhammad’s Agency Rules: Never an Easy Day at the Office. Set in Pakistan, we get to envision and understand a bit better how modern Pakistan operates as well as how the people of Pakistan adapt to the drastic changes in government.

This modern spy thriller gives us an inside view on the after effects of a terrorist attack on Karachi. Several government agencies weigh in on how to handle things, bu
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Sunshine Somerville
Mar 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
4.5 Stars.

The very best thing about this book is that it doesn’t feel like an American perspective dominates the story. As a reader, you feel at all times that you’re getting an insider’s angle, which is refreshing compared to many modern spy/espionage books where an American has to ride in and save the day. Even the terrorists here are portrayed as complex characters with thoughtful motivations. Kamal, as a main character, works perfectly to lead the way into the complexities of Pakistan. I fou
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Pooja Anand
May 23, 2014 rated it really liked it
The book was refereed to me by a friend seeing my interest area. And all through the book I must say the level of excitement. Though lot of grammatical errors, the book is an excellent read for thriller readers.

Set in late 1990s Pakistan, it highlights a chain of events set in motion by a terror attack in Karachi. The country's complex history and fractured political landscape provide an excellent ambiance for the players of this novel - Gangs, Sheikhs, terrorists, politicians, etc. It was grea
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John Dizon
Mar 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Agency Rules by Khalid Muhammad is an action-packed, no-holds-barred look at the life-and-death struggle in Pakistan, a country trapped in its own history. We are introduced to Kamal Khan, a privileged young man whose journey curiously resembles that of Osama Bin Laden. Kamal leaps from the lap of luxury into the maelstrom of tribal wars that threaten to annihilate his beloved homeland. An inept figurehead, Prime Minister Azam Shah, is bolstered by his Interior Minister, Ahsan Chaudhry as they f ...more
Barry Sierer
Mar 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
The nation of Pakistan is centered in one of the most strategically vital regions of the world, bordering Afghanistan to its north and Iran to its west. Within its borders, the nation’s different peoples including; Pathans, Punjabis, and Baluchis, struggle to prosper and survive, sometimes violently.

Sitting astride this cauldron is the Pakistani military and its premier spy Agency; Inter-Service Intelligence (ISI). Kamal Khan, an SSG Commando, goes to work for ISI and is sent into battle against
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Natasha Ahmed
Jan 20, 2014 rated it it was amazing
It was a pleasure to read a spy thriller that I could relate to so completely! This is a fast-paced story with plot twists that could easily be a reality in the drama that is Pakistani politics. I am surprised, in fact, given the incredible history of Pakistan, that more people haven't chosen to write it in as a backdrop to their spy novels. Agency Rules has all the elements of an action-packed political thriller, from ordinary citizens to the country's President.

But the jewel is, naturally, the
...more
Tony Parsons
Jan 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Prime Minister Azam Shah the typical politician was on a tour of the children’s hospital was at press conference & asked what the Muslim League government was doing about rising crime rate in Karachi. Quick responses defending the government & on to the next agenda.

Their policy was for the law enforcement agencies (political leadership, police & paramilitary forces) to take & pull out all stops on the miscreants (criminals, terrorists), but not was being done to curtail criminal
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Judith-Victoria Douglas
Apr 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A true political thriller
I don't read this type of story often, but I'm very glad I read this one. As exciting as any espionage or political thriller you could read (or see in a movie) this one will pull you in. Only the names and places are different, set in Pakistan and showing the political structure and cultural behaviors so similar, yet so different from our own. It's a real eye opener to the difficulties that country and those who run and protect it have. And it doesn't gloss over anything
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Claire
Feb 18, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Agency Rules is a fast paced, topical read which I would highly recommend. The plot is plausible with believable characters and the attention to detail in parts is brilliant. You can't afford to sleep whilst reading this one though, it's complicated and intricate and the fact it is set in Pakistan makes the place names and the character names tough to remember.
There were parts which I felt could have been explored more thoroughly but these did not deter from the enjoyment of the read and I assum
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Jeff Sellers
Feb 21, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I love the way this book reads. Quite easily you find yourself immersed into the world created, so much so it felt like I was watching a movie. This is a nice new viewpoint and addition to the spy genre! I look forward to the next book from Khalid muhammad.
Syed Zaidi
Mar 15, 2014 rated it it was amazing
First of all, before I write any review here, I would like to tell you that I won a digital copy of the novel, Agency Rules - Never an Easy Day at the Office, in an author/publisher contest.

Agency Rules - Never an easy at the office by Khalid Muhammad is set in a post-Afghan-war Pakistan where the insurgents have set up strong networks in the northern areas of Pakistan. The novel takes you through some harsh realities that exist within Pakistan and some unknown facts, policies and modi operandi
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Danelle
Jun 11, 2014 rated it really liked it
I would like to say that I took a gamble stepping outside my “comfort zone” in genre when I accepted to read Agency Rules. And I am thrilled that I made that decision. A novice reader in “spy-thriller’s”, this book was an absolute page turning, action packed delight!

Khalid Muhammad was able to take a complicated topic of terrorism from a foreign country and weave it into a fabulous intriguing novel for the common person. Terrorism as a whole instigates fear- and while fear is one emotion that I
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Lawrence Parlier
Mar 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Khalid Muhammad has crafted a superb novel that gives an inside view into the intricacies of Pakistani politics and its place in the world.
Set against the turmoil of the mid-90's as Pakistan is left to deal with the aftermath of the Russian retreat from Afghanistan. Agency Rules pulls no punches in its portrayal of the corruption and faithless foreign alliances that have beleaguered Pakistan since its inception.
Centered on the pacification of Karachi, a secret military group leaves no stone un-t
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Jana Petken
Jun 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Kamal Khan is an ordinary soldier who finds himself in black ops, spying, monitoring and trying to break up terror units in Pakistan. We all have our own preconceptions about that country today and I found that after I had read this spy novel, many of my own misconceptions came to light. There was a great spy story here but more than that, was a look inside modern day Pakistan with an array of colourful characters from sheiks to terrorist.

This was an extremely well written story, which was descr
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Marisa Oldham
Jun 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Agency Rules by Khalid Muhammad is not a book that is in the typical genre that I read. Normally I'm only a fan of suspense when it comes to horror/murder mysteries. However, I found Agency Rules to be and exciting read. The writing had a quick pace which lent to the thrill of reading such an action packed novel.

Although I had no idea of any of the history in Pakistan, which the author used in this book, I found it very easy to read and understand. I found Muhammad's writing style to be intrigui
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Brenda Perlin
Jun 06, 2014 rated it it was amazing
"Agency Rules - Never an Easy Day at the Office" by Khalid Muhammad is an intriguing, intense thriller. It’s a spy novel that is not quite like anything else that I have read. The story-line moved me and pulled me in. I found this to be a thrilling escape with mystery and suspense. The Pakistan backdrop was so well described that I could actually visualize the landscaping. This is a heavy book that will leave you guessing at every turn. This author has written a wildly compelling story that is n ...more
Natasha Ahmed
Dec 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was a pleasure to read a spy thriller that I could relate to so completely! This is a fast-paced story with plot twists that could easily be a reality in the drama that is Pakistani politics. I am surprised, in fact, given the incredible history of Pakistan, that more people haven't chosen to write it in as a backdrop to their spy novels. Agency Rules has all the elements of an action-packed political thriller, from ordinary citizens to the country's President.

But the jewel is, naturally, the
...more
Carol Ann
Dec 24, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Review of Agency Rules, Never a Good Day at the Office
5 stars

Agency Rules, Never An Easy Day at the Office by Khalid Muhammad is a taut, political thriller set in modern-day Pakistan. Our protagonist, Kamal, possesses a strong sharp mind, terrific sniper skills, and a deep desire to improve his country, all while trying to stay alive among the treacherous subversive groups fighting for control of the country, where dishonesty, torture, and mistrust are rampant. Who can he trust?
This is not th
...more
C.P. Mandara
Agency Rules is a spy thriller with a difference. A delightfully complex plot woven with a frenetic pace that will leave you, quite simply breathless. Kamal Khan is not your average agent. He’s a solider for good, battling the forces that Pakistan throws at him and there are plenty to go around. Sheiks, politicians, terrorists, gang members – the sub plots will keep you guessing as to the final outcome all the way throughout this brilliantly crafted tale.

I love the emotion that the author manage
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258 followers
By day, Khalid Muhammad is a mild-mannered business executive keeping busy running a marketing and brand management company. By night, his alter ego emerges; one that has a penchant for sadistic retribution towards those who wrong others, and that spends its time devising intricate and detailed plans for a nefarious end.

Born in Pakistan’s troubled Swat Valley, educated and raised in the United Sta
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“Always craft a story from real life encounters. It is more believable and you are able to tell it with some emotion.” 7 likes
“There are many ways to turn someone to betray their country - money, ideology, compromise and ego work best. If they don't respond to those, a bullet will help seal the deal.” 4 likes
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