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A Matter of Honor Mass Market Paperback – December 28, 2004

211 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

In 1966, Adam Scott, an unemployed British ex-army officer with an uncertain future, attends the reading of his disgraced father's will. Part of his inheritance is a letter detailing the events of Hermann Goering's suicide and two unopened letters from the Nazi general giving him access to a Swiss bank vault and the valuable Russian icon it contains. However, a veritable state secret is concealed in the painting and the KGB and the CIA both want it before the expiry of a crucial deadline. Scott's perilous journey across Europe to the questionable safety of England is by plane, car, foot, bus, ambulance, van, and ferry as he stays one step ahead of death with the assistance of farmers, salesmen, racing cyclists, hoodlums, and an entire orchestra. An epic chase thriller tidily concluded with a series of neat twists. Highly recommended. Literary Guild main selection. John North, L.R.C., Ryerson Polytechnical Inst., Toronto
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.


Sizzles along at a pace that would peel the paint off a spaceship. (The New York Times Book Review)

Jeffrey Archer has written the equivalent of an Alfred Hitchcock movie. (Baltimore Sun)

A wild, no-hold-barred slam-bang, pell-mell international thriller. (Buffalo News)

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 368 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks (December 28, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0312933541
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312933548
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 6.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (211 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #238,101 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jeffrey Archer has topped the bestseller lists around the world, with sales of over 270 million copies in 97 countries and more than 37 languages. He is the only author ever to have been a number one bestseller in fiction (eighteen times), short stories (four times) and non-fiction (The Prison Diaries).

Jeffrey served five years as a Member of Parliament in the House of Commons and twenty-two years as a Member of the House of Lords.

His latest novel Be Careful What You Wish For, published in March 2014, is the fourth volume in a seven book saga called The Clifton Chronicles, and spent twelve weeks in the top 10 - four of them at #1 - on the Sunday Times Best Seller list, and also went to the top of the bestseller lists in India, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland and South Africa.

Jeffrey is also an art collector and amateur auctioneer, conducting around 30 charity auctions a year.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

122 of 129 people found the following review helpful By William E Hiller on September 6, 1999
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This is the first Jeffrey Archer book that I have read. I can assure you that it won't be the last. I thoroughly enjoyed this adventure-suspense nov el. From the time that Adam Scott opens a letter which was given to him as part of a bequest from his deceased father's will, he is placed on a perilous path between life and death with many unpredictable twists and turns along the way. His search for the Russian icon of St. George and the Dragon coincides with similar searches by the Russian KGB and the Americans. How he manages to locate the icon and to eventually outwit his adversaries makes for an exciting story. I found this book hard to put down once I started it.
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75 of 80 people found the following review helpful By Craig Daniels on June 16, 2000
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I have read extensively out of Jeffrey Archers repetoire and have found all of the books not only palatiable, but also intriguing reads.
I read this book 5 years ago, and make it a point to read it at least once a year if not more. This book was one of the best fiction books ever written as far as I am concerned.
It is so easy for the fiction author to fall into a trap and write the same old news, sometimes in a tired, but different way. These books are not interesting. Any author who can offer a breath of fresh air to the genre recieves my hats off, and this is due to jeffrey Archer.
This book isn't typical at all, the plot twists are entirely tough to predict,and even though the ending should have been a forgone conclustion (the hero winning) it was done in such a way that I was still very much interested.
The basis of the story is a guy named Adam who is led through many adventures because of an archaic note he got from his fathers will. This letter to his father was written in german, and in trying to get it translated the adventure begins.
His journey and escapes follow across most of Europe, and the action never stops. Somewhat like a James Bond flick, but 100 times better, and in book form is what I would compare this exciting read to.
Read this book, and when you are done, read all the rest of Archers books, you will enjoy each and every one of them.
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45 of 47 people found the following review helpful By Sunnye Tiedemann on June 28, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When his father dies, Capt. Adam Scott inherits an envelope. According to the terms of his father's will, he may choose not to open it but "should he decide to open the envelope, it must be on the condition that he will never divulge its contents to any other living person." Adam realizes that the envelope must contain the secret that led his WWII hero father into public disgrace and dishonor.
He opens the envelope and begins to unravel its secrets. Suddenly he's being pursued by the KGB. The defense strategy of the USA is in danger of becoming a pawn to Russia's plan to take over. An imaginative story, building suspense, surprising plot twists and lively writing make this a page-turner. If you like John Le Carre and Robert Ludlum's books, you should love this one.
Sunnye Tiedemann (aka Ruth F. Tiedemann)
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By H. Jin on May 23, 2010
Format: Mass Market Paperback
There are basically two distinct types of Jeffrey Archer books:

a) Epic character-driven tales of lifelong ambition and struggle ('Kane And Abel', 'Prodigal Daughter', 'First Among Equals', 'As The Crow Flies', 'The Fourth Estate', 'Sons of Fortune')

b) Relatively lean and fast-paced political thrillers ('Shall We Tell The President', 'Honour Among Thieves', 'Eleventh Commandment').

'A Matter Of Honour' falls into the second category, and is yet another entertaining Archer thriller. Young ex-soldier Adam Scott is left a mysterious envelope in his father's will, and the contents soon find him being persued all over Europe by agents of the Soviet Union and the United States, as well as his own Foreign Office. What is the significance of the object Adam's father was bequeathed, and how does it relate to the Soviets' sudden propaganda campaign in the West? There is also the question of the Scott family's "disgrace", and whether Adam can use the object to finally restore his late father's honour.

This is a good book, and fans of Archer's work will find plenty to love here. The characterisation is fairly standard Archer, which means it could be seen as a little cliche'd at times. Certainly Adam is very much an "Archer hero" who can endure all manner of phyiscal and intellectual challenges while still charming the pants off any girl he meets, and Romanov is the ruthless villan who'd kill his own close friends and lovers in cold blood to get what he wants. However, there are some surprisingly well-drawn side characters, in particular the increasingly enigmatic Lawrence as the friend who may or may not have sold Adam out, and the headstrong tomboyish Robin, whose fluent lying gets Adam out of several tight spots.
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Steven Sabin on January 1, 2007
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Although the details of Mr. Archer's personal life rival the plots of his novels - from near bankruptcy, to Britain's political inner circles, to prison cell - none of it gets in the way of his well-deserved reputation as an outstanding storyteller.

Next to "Kane & Abel" and "As the Crow Flies" this book is among my three favorites from Archer and I highly recommend it.

Set in the summer of 1966 with Lyndon Johnson in the White House, Harold Wilson at #10 Downing, and Leonid Brezhnev in the Kremlin, "A Matter of Honor" pits a most resourceful but unlikely British protagonist, Adam Scott, against an equally resourceful Soviet antagonist, Alexander Romanov.

When Adam's father, a disgraced military officer, dies, he leaves to his only son the princely sum of 500 pounds and two letters. The first is a missive from Adam's father, explaining the events that led to his resignation from the military, the circumstances that led to his possession of the second letter, and an expression of confidence that his son would conduct himself honorably should he decide to open the second letter and pursue whatever secrets it might contain. When Scott's curiosity gets the best of him, he opens the second letter and finds that it is from a now-dead elite member of Hitler's Third Reich - a man that Scott's father had been assigned to guard during the Nuremberg trials.

As one might guess, it is this second letter that proves to be the crux of the story. It leads Scott to a bank vault, deep beneath the streets of Zurich, containing an obscure work of Russian art - an icon - smuggled out of the country during the downfall of Czar Nikolai II.
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