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Slingshot: A Spycatcher Novel Hardcover – June 25, 2013

116 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews


Like le Carre and Fleming before him, Dunn is the real thing...His, though, is a more muscular creation that Smiley, or even Bond. Meet Will Cochrane, a one-man weapon of mass destruction DAILY TELEGRAPH An intelligent and entertaining summer read...solid and authentic FINANCIAL TIMES I know of no other spy thriller that so successfully blends the fascinating nuances of the business of espionage and intelligence work with full-throttle suspense storytelling Jeffrey Deaver Author Dunn has perfected the literary equivalent of the type of action movie that might star Stallone, Steven Seagal or the Rock IRISH INDEPENDENT A terrific thriller with a superb new hero...Bond and Bourne can take a back seat Matt Hilton

From the Back Cover

Master spy Will Cochrane must catch a missing Russian defector as well as one of Europe's deadliest assassins in this action-packed follow-up to Sentinel, written by real-life former field officer Matthew Dunn

Will Cochrane monitors the nighttime streets of Gdansk, Poland—waiting for the appearance of a Russian defector, a man bearing a top-secret document. Will believes the defector is about to step out of the cold and into the hands of Polish authorities, but suddenly everything goes sideways. The target shows up, but so does a team from the Russian foreign intelligence service SVR, and they are hell-bent on keeping the man from walking. Then, in a hail of cross fire, a van speeds into the melee and snatches the defector out from under them all. Everyone wants the man and the codes he carries—but now he's gone and it's up to Will and his CIA/MI6 team to find him before the Russians do.

Will tracks both the missing Russian and his kidnappers, believing the defector has his own warped agenda. But soon it's apparent that the real perpetrator could be someone much more powerful: a former East German Stasi officer who instigated a supersecret pact between Russian and U.S. generals almost twenty years ago. An agreement, which if broken for any reason, was designed to unleash the world's deadliest assassin.

Then Will learns that the Russians have tasked their own "spycatcher"—an agent just as ruthless and relentless as Will—to retrieve the document. Now Will knows that he faces two very clever and deadly adversaries, who will stop at nothing to achieve their aims.

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Product Details

  • Series: Spycatcher (Book 3)
  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: William Morrow; First Edition edition (June 25, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062038028
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062038029
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (116 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #498,321 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

As an MI6 field officer, Matthew Dunn recruited and ran agents, coordinated and participated in special operations, and acted in deep-cover roles throughout the world. He operated in highly hostile environments, where, if compromised and captured, he would have been executed. Dunn was trained in all aspects of intelligence collection, deep-cover deployments, small-arms, explosives, military unarmed combat, surveillance, and infiltration.

Medals are never awarded to modern MI6 officers, but Dunn was the recipient of a very rare personal commendation from the secretary of state for foreign and commonwealth affairs for work he did on one mission, which was deemed so significant that it directly influenced the successful conclusion of a major international incident.

During his time in MI6, Dunn conducted approximately seventy missions. All of them were successful. He lives in England.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 22 people found the following review helpful By Bob Richey VINE VOICE on May 15, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I must admit that in reading the first few chapters of this book I was growing my usual disgusted attitude since it seemed to me that this author was following the trend of most of the `action' book authors in writing for some Hollywood producer instead of for any loyal readers. There was a lot of verbiage spent on talking about the high end shoes, suits, dresses, furniture, cars, and exotic dining menus of the various characters in this book (sort of a copy of the James Bond books). This must have passed for `character development. That part still disgusts me about this and other books of this sort.

The author, however saved himself from my point of view by writing an exciting book with many unpredictable twists which held me to the end.

If you are a fan of Jason Borne books, you will really enjoy this one. It actually has an interesting plot with an appropriate family of subplots to the very end. I am sure that if Hollywood picks up this book for making of a motion picture, they will successfully trash all of that `plot' stuff in order to keep the action scenes in the normal Hollywood style.

A good book for a long airplane trip.
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21 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Ethan on June 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover
In the early 90's a group of high ranking officials from the Russian and American governments came together to form a highly classified initiative that could potentially lead to the death of millions of people. To ensure the security of the agreement, all involved parties sign a document that allows an international assassin to be ordered to eliminate anyone who leaks the information.

Fast forward to the present day, and the information has been stolen. With the threat of the horrific details of the plan being revealed, various entities begin to search for the documents, and the person who they believe could be responsible. Will Cochrane, an MI6 operative leads a team, in cooperation with the CIA, to attempt to find the man responsible for the missing papers. But the mission soon becomes far more personal. Someone has discovered Will's true identity, and threatens to release the information and to harm his sister, the only person on the earth who he truly cares about. The story quickly becomes an international tale of intrigue in which Will grapples with the implications of the released documents, faces the highly dangerous assassin, and attempts to discover the person or people who threaten to blow his cover.

The complexity of this novel makes it quite difficult to explain the plot without spoiling the twists and details that make it so compelling. Author Matthew Dunn is a former MI6 operative himself, so he brings a unique understanding of the inner workings of the secretive organizations that are explored in this book. This is the third novel to feature Will Cochrane, but the story itself stands alone as a completely realized narrative.
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17 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Richard B. Schwartz TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 1, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I have been a little hard on Matthew Dunn in the past. His novels Sentinel and Spycatcher were both highly entertaining. They exhibited an awareness of the full details of contemporary espionage--the organizations, the acronyms and all the weaponry--as well as a detailed knowledge of a multiplicity of settings, complete with their weather, food and the clothing one needs to survive there. Dunn is a former MI6 operative and he knows his stuff. At the same time, the novels weren't quite there yet as polished narratives.

With Slingshot all of that changes. This is a first-rate novel as well as a first-rate espionage tale. The premise: in the 1990's a secret deal was struck between the U.S. and Russia, a deal involving the potential death of hundreds of millions of people. (We learn the details [and the target] later in the novel.) The signatories to the agreement seek to maintain absolute security and have created a fail/safe system to prevent any leaks concerning the agreement. They have installed a deep-cover assassin who will be dispatched--using certain protocols--to eradicate any potential source of leaks.

When those protocols are stolen and news of a potential witness (who will disclose the nature of the agreement) surfaces, a group of agents with various degrees of awareness converge. One group is masterminded by a former Stasi Colonel, a signatory to the original agreement; another is lead by a Russian, a third by Will Cochrane's MI6 group, which also articulates with the CIA. Will and company must also conjure with a rogue Mossad agent, a Russian defector and a loose-cannon group within the CIA.
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11 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Misanthrope™ VINE VOICE on May 11, 2013
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
This third novel by Matthew Dunn is by far the best Spycatcher novel to date. I really have no idea what happened between the second and third novel, but Dunn has moved from being a quite average novelist to a top-notch writer of the espionage thriller.

I despise giving many details of a novel above the blurb given by the publisher, because most readers dislike spoilers. That being the case, I will say that Cochrane, Dunn's protagonist, encounters some serious competition...

There is another Spycatcher in this novel, an SVR version. Plus there is a German assassin code-named Kronos that is an awesome character. Both of these characters are likable, and I actually hope to see more of them in a future installment of the Spycatcher series.

One large difference I saw in this book is that Matthew Dunn's writing and literary skills have improved, and he is becoming much better at character development. Before, it was mostly just two-dimensional characters and plot, with much to be desired in descriptive narration. With Slingshot, he has improved on all of these components of the novel.

I recommend this series, with the qualification that readers understand the steep curve of writing quality. The second book is much better than the first, and the third is much better than the second. Plus, this seems to be an exponential rather than linear improvement.
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