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The Nearest Exit (Milo Weaver) Mass Market Paperback – February 26, 2013

209 customer reviews
Book 2 of 3 in the Milo Weaver Series

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Milo Weaver, a former field agent with the CIA's clandestine Department of Tourism, returns to action after a stint in prison for alleged financial fraud in this intense sequel to The Tourist. His handlers want Weaver to pursue a mole rumored to have infiltrated the CIA's black-ops department, but with his loyalty in question, he must first undergo some test missions, one of which is to kill the 15-year-old daughter of Moldovan immigrants now living in Berlin. Such a horrific assignment further weakens Weaver's already wavering enthusiasm for his secret life, and he becomes increasingly preoccupied with reconnecting with his estranged wife and child. When bombshell revelations rock Weaver's world, he vows to somehow put international intelligence work behind him. Can he do so without jeopardizing his and his family's safety? Steinhauer's adept characterization of a morally conflicted spy makes this an emotionally powerful read. Author tour. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Since the events of The Tourist (2009), Milo Weaver has served time in prison, worked in administration, and tried to reconnect with his wife and daughter. But talk therapy is hard when you’re trained to keep secrets. When asked to return to the field, he agrees, although, because of his disgust with the Department of Tourism (a black-ops branch of the CIA), he plans to feed information to his father, Yevgeny Primakov, the “secret ear” of the UN. But his handlers don’t trust him, either, giving him a series of vetting assignments that culminates in an impossible loyalty test: the abduction and murder of a 15-year-old girl. Ironically, Weaver is then tasked with finding a security breach that threatens the very existence of Tourism—and the lives of the Tourists. Seeing his own brutal compatriots as humans, he does his best to save the thing he despises, a conundrum that pretty much sums up the shades of gray that paint this modern-day espionage masterpiece. The Tourist was impressive, proving that Steinhauer had the ability to leap from the historical setting of his excellent Eastern European quintet to a vividly imagined contemporary landscape. But this is even better, a dazzling, dizzyingly complex world of clandestine warfare that is complicated further by the affairs of the heart. Steinhauer never forgets the human lives at stake, and that, perhaps, is the now-older Weaver’s flaw: he is too human, too attached, to be the perfect spy. His failure to save the girl he was told to kill threads the whole book like barbed wire. --Keir Graff --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Product Details

  • Series: Milo Weaver (Book 2)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 592 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Paperbacks; Reprint edition (February 26, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1250025427
  • ISBN-13: 978-1250025425
  • Product Dimensions: 4.1 x 1.2 x 7.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (209 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #36,545 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Olen Steinhauer grew up in Virginia, and has since lived in Georgia, Mississippi, Pennsylvania, Texas, California, Massachusetts, and New York. Outside the US, he's lived in Croatia (when it was called Yugoslavia), the Czech Republic and Italy. He also spent a year in Romania on a Fulbright grant, an experience that helped inspire his first five books. He now lives in Hungary with his wife and daughter.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

86 of 93 people found the following review helpful By Bobbewig TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 11, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
The Nearest Exit is an excellent follow-up to Steinhauer's The Tourist. Like The Tourist, The Nearest Exit represents a first-class combination of complex, intelligent plotting and multi-dimensional characterization. Although, I have to admit that by the end of the first half of the book I was feeling that Steinhauer's latest was going to fall far short of The Tourist in terms of being a well-crafted espionage thriller. Be assured, however, that the second half of the book is so strong that it more than made up for my doubts and concerns about the first half. The Nearest Exit ultimately delivers an exciting story in which Milo Weaver, faced with the end of his quiet, settled life, has no choice but to turn back to his old job as a "tourist." But before being able to do so, he must prove his loyalty. This catapults him into a dangerous position; one in which he must decide between right and wrong, between powerful self-interested foes, between patriots and traitors and between life and death. Be aware that The Nearest Exit, perhaps even more than did The Tourist, requires the reader to use all of his/her mental abilities to help wade through all the layers of deceit and manipulation that must be uncovered to get to the truth. Further, you should be aware that The Nearest Exit may not be the book to read if you are looking to read a story that will have you physically trying to catch your breath in order to keep up with all the action and adventure. I highly recommend The Nearest Exit to anyone that enjoyed The Tourist, as well as to anyone who enjoys a complex, intelligent, moving spy novel in the best tradition of John Le Carre and Len Deighton (at least in their early days), Graham Greene and Alan Furst. I, for one, can't wait to "travel" with "tourist" Milo Weaver on his next thrilling, mentally-challenging, emotionally charged adventure. I suspect I'll have about a year to prepare myself to tour with Milo.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By San Fran Dan on October 31, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The Nearest Exit is a pretty good spy novel but not in the same league with The Tourist (the book to which this is a sequel).

I will not restate the plot, others have. Suffice it to say that the plot is far less interesting than that of The Tourist. So too are the characters. We get one interesting new person (Ms. Schwartz) but otherwise we get stock - Oskar (her assistant), her boss, Milo's new boss, Senator Irwin - none of them become real to the reader.

The book bogs down in the middle, including two terrible chapters involving Milo, his wife, Rita, and their couples therapist. These are so bad, they are painful (and boring) to read. None of the dialogue seems even slightly real. The chapters should have been omitted entirely and Milo's epiphany (which takes place in the second of the two chapters) placed elsewhere.

The ending is completely unreal but is suitably complex. The last 100-150 pages of the book, and the beginning, are a good deal better than the rest. The ending leaves room for a third book if the author so chooses.

I am not saying don't read the book, I am just saying it disappoints when compared to the book it follows, the superb "The Tourist."
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By S. McGee TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Having loved The Tourist, I knew that I'd enjoy this sequel, if only to find out what happens to Milo Weaver after he goes on the run in order to clear his name -- and ends up losing his family and his freedom in order to do so. Now Weaver is out of jail and back in the 'Department of Tourism' -- but he's more deeply alienated than ever, and struggling to find a way to do his job in a way that doesn't violate what moral code he has managed to hang on to. The crunch comes when Weaver gets his latest assignment: a kill order for a very unlikely target that he just doesn't understand and can't bring himself to act on.

The plot hangs on that 'kill order', its target and the fallout from Weaver's qualms of conscience -- and it's an excellent and convoluted one, that never left me thinking "yeah, I saw that coming 50 pages ago." Many of the elements that I loved about the first book are still here in abundance -- the nuanced portrayal of characters who are never black and white and always human, such as the German spy who stops off nightly for a bottle of wine and a Snickers bar at her local shop but is quite capable of holding Milo Weaver hostage and using enhanced interrogation techniques on him -- but who later will go out of her way to assist his quest for some kind of justice and retribution for the TRULY villainous. Milo Weaver's world is a gritty, grey one, and even the end of the book doesn't offer much consolation if you're looking for a warm and fuzzy ending to his story. (Perhaps volume #3 in the Milo Weaver saga is in the works?)

I wouldn't suggest reading this book without reading its predecessor.
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15 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Michael Moore VINE VOICE on July 28, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I read The Tourist last year and liked the tongue in cheek style and the witty plotting. The Nearest Exit is the second book to feature Milo Weaver, the reluctant tourist. Both books are a cut above the genre and require the reader to pay a bit more attention than say a James Lee Burke or a Lee Child novel. The author who comes closest to Steinhauer is Charles McGarry. If you'd rather read than watch television and you are looking for some thoughtful entertainment...consider these two. It is best to read them in order.
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