It starts out at 5 stars, simply because it’s by Len Deighton, one of the 20th C’s greatest writers. This one is a bit “damned by faint praise” by some, relative to Funeral in Berlin and the Samson books, but it’s still head and shoulders above 99% of the Cold War spy field. And then James Layley’s incredible narration— just the right touch of Michael Caine, plus subtle characterizations and accents for a broad cast of Brits and non-Brits and Europeans of one ilk masquerading as nationals of another land…MASTERFUL. Leighton+ Lailey is one of those magical combinations which puts the product far beyond any 5 star category.
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