A few years before the fall of the Berlin Wall, spook-turned-novelist Edwin Lemaster reveals to young journalist Bill Cage that he'd once considered spying for the enemy. For Cage, a fan who grew up as a Foreign Service brat in the very cities where Lemaster set his plots, the story creates a brief but embarrassing sensation.
More than two decades later, Cage, by then a lonely, disillusioned PR man, receives an anonymous note hinting that he should have dug deeper. The note is the first of many literary bread crumbs that soon lead him back to Vienna, Prague and Budapest in search fo the truth, even as the events of Lemaster's past eerily - and dangerously - begin intersecting with those of his own.
©2012 Dan Fesperman (P)2013 Isis Publishing Ltd
I saw someone write that "The Arms Maker of Berlin" was a complicated story - well, this one even more so. The contemporary plot of this novel is based on historical (cold war) characters which are easy to mix up and the clues and the plot itself is also complex. Fesperman's idea to construct a spy novel based on previous spy novels from Eric Ambler to John Le Carre is interesting but sometimes it feels like too many Russian Dolls inside each other.
But then overall I do love Fesperman and the present time story does move along and the really excellent narration which brings all the different characters to life tips the balance to the positive.
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