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The Fallen Angel: A Novel (Gabriel Allon) Hardcover – July 17, 2012

4.4 out of 5 stars 1,661 customer reviews
Book 12 of 15 in the Gabriel Allon Series

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Editorial Reviews


“It’s become almost obligatory for lovers of high level thrillers to read each new Daniel Silva novel as soon as it appears. With his by now trademark character, Gabriel Allon...Silva just about guarantees a couple of days of terrific entertainment.” (NPR, All Things Considered)

“Daniel Silva’s The Fallen Angel soars with authenticity….The Fallen Angel delivers the goods….Riveting espionage adventures that have timely, real-world relevance.” (Dallas-Fort Worth Star-Telegram)

“Meticulously researched....The Fallen Angel is a first-class spy mystery painted on a grand scale.” (Columbus Dispatch)

“Another heart-pounding escapade of art restorer and Israeli intelligence legend Gabriel Allon gets masterful treatment.” (AudioFile Magazine)

“His past 12 books, all featuring enigmatic spy/art restorer Gabriel Allon, have kept Silva’s name high in the ranks; the latest, the Vatican-set The Fallen Angel, seems unlikely to reverse the trend.” (Arizona Republic)

From the Back Cover

After narrowly surviving his last operation, Gabriel Allon, the wayward son of Israeli intelligence, has taken refuge behind the walls of the Vatican, where he is restoring one of Caravaggio's greatest masterpieces. But early one morning he is summoned to St. Peter's Basilica by Monsignor Luigi Donati, the all-powerful private secretary to His Holiness Pope Paul VII. The body of a beautiful woman lies broken beneath Michelangelo's magnificent dome. The Vatican police suspect suicide, though Gabriel believes otherwise. So, it seems, does Donati. But the monsignor is fearful that a public inquiry might inflict another scandal on the Church, and so he calls upon Gabriel to quietly pursue the truth—with one caveat.

"Rule number one at the Vatican," Donati said. "Don't ask too many questions."

Gabriel learns that the dead woman had uncovered a dangerous secret—a secret that threatens a global criminal enterprise that is looting timeless treasures of antiquity and selling them to the highest bidder. But there is more to this network than just greed. A mysterious operative is plotting an act of sabotage that will plunge the world into a conflict of apocalyptic proportions. . . .

An intoxicating blend of art, intrigue, and history, The Fallen Angel moves swiftly from the cloistered chambers of the Vatican to the glamorous ski slopes of St. Moritz to the graceful avenues of Berlin and Vienna—and, finally, to a shocking climax beneath the world's most sacred and contested parcel of land. Each setting in this extraordinary novel is rendered with the care of an Old Master, as are the spies, lovers, priests, and thieves who inhabit its pages. It is a story of faith and of the destructive power of secrets—and an all too timely reminder that those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it.


Product Details

  • Series: Gabriel Allon (Book 12)
  • Hardcover: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Harper; 1 edition (July 17, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062073125
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062073129
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1.3 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,661 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #100,614 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

He has been called his generation's finest writer of international intrigue and one of the greatest American spy novelists ever. Compelling, passionate, haunting, brilliant: these are the words that have been used to describe the work of #1 New York Times-bestselling author Daniel Silva.

Silva burst onto the scene in 1997 with his electrifying bestselling debut, The Unlikely Spy, a novel of love and deception set around the Allied invasion of France in World War II. His second and third novels, The Mark of the Assassin and The Marching Season, were also instant New York Times bestsellers and starred two of Silva's most memorable characters: CIA officer Michael Osbourne and international hit man Jean-Paul Delaroche. But it was Silva's fourth novel, The Kill Artist, which would alter the course of his career. The novel featured a character described as one of the most memorable and compelling in contemporary fiction, the art restorer and sometime Israeli secret agent Gabriel Allon, and though Silva did not realize it at the time, Gabriel's adventures had only just begun. Gabriel Allon appears in Silva's next nine novels, each one more successful than the last: The English Assassin, The Confessor, A Death in Vienna, and Prince of Fire, The Messenger, The Secret Servant, Moscow Rules, and The Defector. Silva's forthcoming novel, The Rembrandt Affair, will be published on July 20, 2010.

Silva knew from a very early age that he wanted to become a writer, but his first profession would be journalism. Born in Michigan, raised and educated in California, he was pursuing a master's degree in international relations when he received a temporary job offer from United Press International to help cover the 1984 Democratic National Convention in San Francisco. Later that year Silva abandoned his studies and joined UPI fulltime, working first in San Francisco, then on the foreign desk in Washington, and finally as Middle East correspondent in Cairo and the Persian Gulf. In 1987, while covering the Iran-Iraq war, he met NBC Today National Correspondent Jamie Gangel and they were married later that year. Silva returned to Washington and went to work for CNN and became Executive Producer of its talk show unit including shows like Crossfire, Capital Gang and Reliable Sources.

In 1995 he confessed to Jamie that his true ambition was to be a novelist. With her support and encouragement he secretly began work on the manuscript that would eventually become the instant bestseller The Unlikely Spy. He left CNN in 1997 after the book's successful publication and began writing full time. Since then all of Silva's books have been New York Times and international bestsellers. His books have been translated in to more than 25 languages and are published around the world. Silva continues to reside in Washington with his wife and teenage twins Lily and Nicholas. When not writing he can usually be found roaming the stacks of the Georgetown University library, where he does much of the research for his books. He is currently at work on a new Gabriel Allon novel and warmly thanks all those friends and loyal readers who have helped to make the series such an amazing success.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
A curator in the Vatican's antiquities division, Dr. Claudia Andreatti, falls to her death in St. Peter's Basilica. Was it suicide or murder? The Pope's private secretary, Monsignor Luigi Donati, calls upon former Israeli intelligence agent Gabriel Allon to solve the mystery discreetly. Allon has been an invaluable asset to the Holy See in the past; he is as skilled in the art of espionage as he is in restoring a Caravaggio painting to its original magnificence.

Allon learns that before Andreatti was killed, she was conducting a secret investigation into the provenance of the Vatican's holdings. Had she made a discovery that posed a threat to someone with a great deal to lose? Gabriel and, to a lesser extent, his beautiful wife, Chiara, become entangled in a complex case involving stolen art works, money laundering, organized crime, and terrorism. One of the villains Allon would like to crush is Carlo Marchese, "a criminal without borders, creed, or conscience."

Daniel Silva's "The Fallen Angel" will feel familiar to those who have followed Allon over the years. Our master Israeli spy once again is dragged out of retirement to foil a nefarious plot; his well-organized team assembles under the watchful eye of Allon's mentor, Ari Shamron, to come up with a plan of attack; and the action takes place in various countries, including Italy, France, and Germany, and Israel. Allon is aging, and even makes a self-deprecating remark about having a "senior moment," but he is still as mentally and physically sharp as a man half his age. Although he relies on his colleagues to do research, provide advice, and help execute strategy, Allon is the man you want on the ground when everything is on the line.
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Others have reviewed the book and story. As a writer, I not only read for entertainment and story, but for style and flow in an effort to make me a better writer. Daniel Silva is a master! His writing style is of the best quality. He doesn't insult the reader's intelligence with nonsensical crude unnecessary language as so many contemporary authors are doing more and more. Silva brings Gabriel Allon to life. He is an old friend and someone to whom the reader can easily relate. Perhaps the most enjoyable part of reading Daniel Silva--and Gabriel Allon--is the masterful plotting in the style of the great British mystery writers who spent more time weaving a good story instead of shocking a reader with obscene drivel. If you like quality writing AND a good story, this is the one for you!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In Gabriel Allon's world, a world of art restoration and beauty, lies an undertone of the spy he once was for the Mossad, where life is precious.

While restoring a Carvaggio to its former glory, a female curate falls from near the top of the Basilica at St. Peters. Only in Gabriel's world would a Catholic priest ask him to "look around, but don't ask too many questions". This is the same Catholic church that in our world is one scandal from oblivion. The death of the curate from one of the Vatican's museums could be the lynch pin to pull the church to the ground. Ask too many questions? I believe they asked the wrong person!

Gabriel and his wife Chiara are not noted for being low-key. Anywhere they go bodies seem to just drop from the sky. While the Vatican would love for the death to be just a suicide, Gabriel knows better, so how to discover the cause of her death without asking "too many questions"?

Then there's what the curator was working on, and it's somehow related to either a terrorist group or the Mob. Or worse, Hezbollah, which makes both look like school kids throwing rocks. Hezbollah is noted for wanting Israel wiped off the face of the earth. So how does an ex-Mossad spy get back into the fray without anyone knowing what he's trying to achieve?

From Rome, to Paris, to St. Moritz, to Berlin, to northern Denmark, and then Vienna whatever happens in Gabriel's world could affect our own.

All our old favorite characters are present to support Gabriel: Ari Sharom, Uzi Navot, and the new Mossad leader Eli Lavon. All are terrified for Gabriel as well as their country and the rest of the world.

Only in the fertile mind of Daniel Silva are these answered and many more questions examined.
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3 Comments 118 of 135 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
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Format: Hardcover
I studied the holocaust when I did my BA. When I did my history major I took more than one course in the history of Judaism and what occurred in Germany during WW2. I am not Jewish but my parents schooled me in right versus wrong and who is our real friend when the times get tough. I wanted to know why my Dad at the age of 20 had to go drop bombs on my German cousins. He did it out of a sense of duty, purpose and frankly because unlike millions in Europe then and now he like other Americans hated bullies. Will not tolerate seeing people maligned, degraded, isolated and marked for destruction. I hate bullies in the same way he did and if he were alive he'd have loved this book to. This book The Fallen Angel made me think, grow angry, and weep for joy. The reality of the Middle East and the issues that Israel is facing are not some sort of reality show we can turn off. They are real. It is going on now and everyday. The lies being told by certain groups are catestrophic not just to the Jewish people but to us all and sometimes only a fiction writer can say these things. Silva in my estimation is one of the bravest men around. I applaud him for that.
Suffice it to say Daniel Silva not only succinctly brings up these issues of the origins of our Jewish brothers and sisters but the way history can be disguarded and destroyed by people who do not wish to accept facts. Facts and accepting them bring a person to the absolute truth. Disregarding facts, destroying evidence brings a person or people to an absolute lie. Anyone who has read the book will understand what I mean and for those who haven't read it, please do.
No one will be disappointed in this book. I feel its Silva's best so far and that proves the auther merely goes out of his way to one up himself. Well done. BRAVO!
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