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Spy Hook

Narrated by: James Lailey
Series: Bernard Samson, Book 4
Length: 10 hrs and 6 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (185 ratings)

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Summary

The long-awaited reissue of the first part of the classic spy trilogy Hook, Line and Sinker, when the Berlin Wall divided not just a city but a world.

Working for the Department was like marriage is supposed to be--"'til death do us part"--but the Department is really not like that, and neither are many marriages, including that of Bernard Samson. The cool and cynical field agent of the Game, Set and Match trilogy has grown older and wiser. But things have not gone well for Samson: old pals are not as friendly as they used to be, and colleagues are less confiding than they once were.

Now, starting with his mission to Washington, life has become even more precarious for Bernard. Ignoring all warnings, friendly, devious, and otherwise, he pursues his own investigation and, in California, meets with the biggest surprise of his life.…

©2015 HarperCollins Publishers Limited; 2015 Len Deighton

Critic reviews

"Superb.... The secret of Spy Hook is its readability...Deighton is the inspiration for Le Carre and Forsyth and a master of his craft." ( Today)
"In Deighton's best books--like this one--the narrative glides forward on rollers, and the scenes and characters fit perfectly into place. The result is marvellous entertainment." ( Independent)
"Vintage, treble-crossing, East-West intrigue...written with Deighton's usual punch and economy." ( Daily Mail)
"The narrative glides forward on rollers, and the scenes and characters fit perfectly into place. The result is a marvellous entertainment." ( Independent)
"Mr. Deighton's touch is unfailing...never a false note." ( New York Times Book Review)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The master of the spy story

Any additional comments?

My comments on Berlin Game apply to the whole series. If you like spy stories you will not be disappointed.

4 people found this helpful

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Gritty Bond

Realistic Cold War drama. The fourth in the Bernard Samson series. Bernard is no smooth Bond clone but a gritty practical field agent . Think Le Carre rather than Flemming. Samson has a life outside the office and there is a great richness of characters. No gratuitous violence or sex and no eye on the next movie just great plot, great writing and great narration.
Mr Deighton stresses that each book is a stand alone unit but my recommendation is to start the saga at the beginning : London Game

2 people found this helpful

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Orange File

Scenario 1: The airplane picks up speed on the runway but doesn't take off. Scenario 2: The airplane is standing still on the runway. Three-quarters of the way through Spy Hook, I'm thinking about either of the two above situations. Then things liven up. The funny thing is, bearing in mind what I consider to be the slow pace of the novel up to that point, I had to go back and re-read chunks of the last part of the book to fully understand it. The best espionage and crime novels get you thinking over the plot in this way. Does the ending provide all the answers or does it leave you asking for more ? The clue is that Spy Hook is the first instalment of the Hook, Line and Sinker trilogy. Don't let this put you off. Another requirement of the best books of this genre, is working out who are the good and bad guys; this is an aspect of this book. Despite my earlier comments, I highly recommend Spy Hook. Looking forward to reading Deighton's full collection of writings.

My rating: 5/5.

1 person found this helpful

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Great start to the next trilogy

Len Deighton continues the Samson tri-trilogy with great aplomb, ramping up the problems in his work life, whilst trying to hold together his new personal life.

A cliffhanger hanger sets things up perfectly for the Line, and the continued trials & tribulations of Bernard Samson.

1 person found this helpful

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Typical Deighton. Story telling at its best

Len Deightons stories are simply written and easily absorbed. The way stories should be. This one is typical Deighton.

1 person found this helpful

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A gripping start

I have longed to have the time to listen to this. Today I got my chance and completed it in one go. Easy to listen to, the narrator was clear and well spoken. I look forward to the next in the trilogy.

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Falls a little short

For me, this book falls a little short and skips key parts of the story. For example there’s was very little focus or surprise when Bernard discovered Brett was still alive. Felt a little too much like a business as usual.

I felt the book could have articulated this and other key parts of the story better.

But on to the next part of the story....

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A slow start

Really enjoyed the previous trilogy, but I think that the first one of the second trilogy is the worst so far. It's way too slow and meandering in its first half, but picks up later. Like the first trio (which I thought got better as they went along) I'm hoping for great things as the story progresses as I loved Game Set and Match. The lack of any solid plot to start with makes it a difficult listen. I'm sure it will put people off an otherwise excellent series. Narration is perfect, as ever.

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Excellent

Working my way through the series. Love Me Deighton’s work. Straight onto spy line now

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Classic spy thriller

Fantastic book. Wonderful well written characters and iconic locations. The banter and office politics are so well written as always. Really top notch spy story. Onto the next!

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  • An example of Grace
  • 04-01-19

Need, need, NEED the rest of the series!

I hope the rest of Len Deighton's witty, tongue-in-cheek, cold war spy novels will be available someday. I have hard copies of them all, but I really enjoy listening to these old favorites while I am working.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Sean
  • 18-02-15

Very good

Reader is amazing
Story is great but not as good as game set match trilogy...yes.
Eagerly awaiting the next book - release more faster please!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Thomas Sheppard
  • 25-06-15

God story at times too drawn out

Enjoying the start of the series however am again displeased to see another series with a book from it not available on Audible. Seriously a pain. I understand about publishing rights just don't understand why all 1 book in a series is always not available.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Michael J Gore
  • 07-10-19

Wonderful

A tense and exciting spy novel that is relentlessly tense and troubling. I loved it.

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  • suresh kumar
  • 23-12-18

Intriguing...

Really a story of intrigue and twists. The end kees us wondering about various ossibilities. The entire Ben Samson series has stories with unrelated events that ultiately add u to a grand lot.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 23-12-18

spy hook

loved the story line & the continuation of the characters from the previous trilogy. kept hoping Bernard would find some one to believe & support him. Am anxious to continue this trilogy to see if bernard is finally vindicated.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Dennis L Gump Jr.
  • 19-09-16

What did I just listen to?

Seriously, was it about facing mid-life as a spy, having a friend who is renovating a hotel? Losing a wife? Wtf? It was in three thousand places that made no sense.