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The Jackal's Share Hardcover – February 21, 2013

4.3 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

'The Jackal's Share reunites us with corporate spy Ben Webster from his debut An Agent of Deceit. Morgan Jones does invite comparison with Le Carre, and never more so than in this elegant novel about the dark, amoral charisma of the super-rich - in this case Darius Qazai, an Iranian expat who runs an enormous asset-management business and has hired Webster to investigate his own reputation in the runup to its sale. Webster must struggle to remain uncompromised - and, later, safe from the forces his mission sets in motion. Murky, mesmerising stuff' Guardian 'Ambivalent as ever about the ethics of the superrich and his part in solving their problems, Webster proves to be the ethically troubled anti-Bond. A more-than-worthy sequel with deft, complex and believable plotting, tense, gut-wrenching action, and classy literary writing' Kirkus Starred Review 'Chris Morgan Jones's debut novel, An Agent of Deceit, was rightly praised for continuing the reconfiguration of the spy novel begun by such terrific authors as Charles Cumming after the Berlin Wall came down and east versus west became too simplistic an analysis of world politics. But with The Jackal's Share it becomes clear that, actually, Morgan Jones is writing detective as well as spy fiction. The novel is as much Raymond Chandler as John le Carre; as much The Big Sleep as The Spy Who Came in From the Cold ... Ben Webster's character has interesting complexities. Like Marlowe, he has his own morality and doesn't much like the wealthy - including his own client. But down these moneyed streets a man must go, although, unlike Marlowe, Webster does it with wife and kids in tow ... Webster's characterisation is strong and carried along in the flow of the plot, which has the broad canvas of a spy novel: Middle Eastern politics are central and there are trips to Lake Como, Dubai and Marrakech. The author is deft with all his characterisations but, in particular, he has created two genuinely chilling antagonists, one whose menace is horribly physical, the other whose seeming omniscience provides the threat. He also has an assured sense of place whether in his foreign locations or moving around London ... Chris Morgan Jones has more than equalled his powerful debut and in Ben Webster has created a flawed, likable central character. I look forward to getting to know him better' Observer 'A surprising plot and deceptively simple prose distinguish Jones's exceptional thriller, his second after his impressive debut, 2012's An Agent of Deceit' Publishers Weekly --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

About the Author

For eleven years CHRIS MORGAN JONES worked at the world’s largest business intelligence agency. He has advised Middle Eastern governments, Russian oligarchs, New York banks, London hedge funds, and African mining companies. He is the author of The Silent Oligarch.

www.ChrisMorganJones.com
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Press (February 21, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1594205353
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594205354
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.5 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,183,031 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This is clearly a Le Carre wannabe. But he is not there yet. Morgan Jones needs a good editor to rescue the first class text from the redundant chase scenes and the gratuitous violence. There is nothing subtle about these scenes which seem to last forever. The subject matter is interesting suggesting how the bad guys in Iran are stashing their cash where else but London.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book. I had read the authors first book, The Silent Oligarch. This book held my interest to the end and I just bought his third book, The Searcher, which I have not read yet. The character, Ben Webster, while investigating a client takes you to some exotic and exciting places and runs into some interesting characters while frequently putting his life at risk.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I enjoyed the author's first book, The Silent Oligarch, for the same reasons I enjoyed this work. Realism in his characters, an excellent plot, and intriguing international finance.

Others have pointed out the mid-East international and plot aspects of this work. But I want to point out the upmost realism of the main characters. Although there are some supporting players who are totally vile, exhibiting no redeeming elements of character, yet the main characters contain no Hollywood types, i.e., all good, all bad, a superhero, or a super-villain. Such is reality.

Character flaws exist in the best, not all facets of our heros are endearing. Even enemies or those whose actions we cannot support often have some redeeming, if private, traits. It is necessary to know this fact so as to separate fiction from fact, be able to see, not just look, and be prepared for the otherwise unexpected response to an action taken or situation.

It is understandable that some find fault with characters not being all good or all bad in fiction. But, that's life. Christopher Morgan Jones writes realistically, and as such, one should look upon it as an opportunity to share with his characters the anguish of inner conflict which is the human condition.
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Format: Hardcover
I have stalled on writing my review of "The Jackal's Share" by Chris Morgan Jones. And I ask myself, "why"? Because I've been busy? Well, yeah, but I've written other reviews in the interim, why did this one always get delayed?

The plot? No, the plot has the kind of stuff I look for in a thriller - a god mix of action and introspection, well paced between the two. The settings? No - while I don't know for sure since I've never been to any of these places, I FELT like I was in London, and Bahrain, and Lake Como, and ... The length? No, that was appropriate for the material. The spelling / grammar / punctuation / formatting? No - I had an ARC, but it was a lot cleaner than some of the "completed" indie novels I've read and reviewed over the past couple of years.

The characters? THE CHARACTERS!! That was it!! They all felt believable, from their actions to their motivations to their dialogue. BUT ... I didn't LIKE any of them! Our hero, Benjamin Webster, had his own personal issues. And, I didn't HATE anyone, either. Our bad guys - or ARE they villains - have their softer moments, too. BUT ... I never got into anyone enough to root for them or even to root against them. This isn't fair to the author - there's no rule that says the reader has to be rooting for or against anyone. BUT ... without that, I find I just don't enjoy a book as much.

I'm giving it 3 ½ stars, but rounding up to 4 since we can't provide ½ stars.

DISCLOSURE: I won this book in a random draw; the publishers would certainly like it if I reviewed their book (and like it more if I gave it a good review), but no commitment to do so was requested nor made.
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Format: Hardcover
If you are a junkie that loves exotic cross continent intrigue and solely like a book that is plot driven I suppose you will like this book - but it seems to me I have read similar plots -just not centered in the Middle East. However, I like a book in which I care for/ admire some of the characters and hate/repulsed by some of the others. This was not the case here. Frankly, I didn't care if any of them lived or died by the end. People in this book I would not want to know as they engaged me so little. So, I suppose there is an audience out there as been shown by the other reviews but this book didn't float my boat.
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