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Kingdoms Fall - The Laxenburg Message Paperback – July 10, 2013
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The thrilling plot drives them from country to country to aid Britain and her allies, into the evolved machinations of the Hapsburg power dynasty, and up against their own differing talents. Fortunately both men are inventive, fast and prove to be ingenious-- and incredibly entertaining. It's seriously engaging and fun to see them at work. I particularly loved the themes of juxtaposed class strata that we see, too--such a profoundly important part of the crumbling empire era played out throughout WWI and highlighted in the differences between Wilkins and Gresham.en
The intelligence and energy in the writing is extraordinary. The author keenly knows when and how to describe complex political, diplomatic, geopolitical and military details to tell the story vividly to non-historians, and when to advance the plot with thrilling action. The resolution to the Austrian crises is ingenious and highly satisfying. I felt the characters grew immensely, as well, in complex ways, making this a rich read that transcends the compelling historical spy narrative. Maps of key areas are included, as is afterward with further historical information. Highly recommended for fans of historical fiction, spy fiction, or military narratives.
Review: I'll be the first to admit that I loved the mystery aspect of James Bond and other spy books. The way the author was able to bring in real people, places, and events and tie them to the work of fiction was awesome. Between the single letter names, politics, and action, I'd recommend this book to any spy fan out there. It's going back on my "Read Again" shelf
Reviewed by IABookReviews.com
Lieutenant David Gresham is the hero of the book, and his first, somewhat unorthodox mission, is to rescue an Arab called ‘Mahammed al-Faruqi’ from behind enemy lines. As the true nature of his mission is classified, he remains mystified as to what British ‘Civilian’ Intelligence might want with him.
The book becomes very intriguing from this point on: “You may call me K. There are no names here, nor are there any Misters Peters or Nash, you should know. I am the individual M sent you to meet.” I almost felt I had fallen into the middle of a James Bond novel, but will have to admit I found this a much better read.
Without giving too much of the plot away, ‘The Laxenburg Message,’ is one of the reasons behind all the secrecy and what Gresham and his cohort Wilkins must set out to deliver, at great personal risk to themselves. They will meet with some of the highest echelons of Austrian society in order to accomplish their aim.
I loved the politics between the officers, the class differential between those of the lower ranks and those higher up and the complete realism. Whilst this book is a work of fiction, much of it based on actual historical events, places and people.
My verdict? A thoroughly engrossing, 5 Star read!
Most recent customer reviews
enabling British policy to succeed or, at least, to...Read more