The cover wife

Dan Fesperman, 1955-

Book - 2021

"From the author of Safe Houses--An electrifying new novel about a CIA agent and a young Moroccan ex-pat who becomes ensnared in the world of radical Islam. When CIA agent Claire Saylor is told that she'll be going undercover to pose as the dowdy wife of a stuffy academic who has posited a controversial new interpretation of the Quran's promise to martyrs she assumes the job is a punishment for past unorthodox behavior. But when she discovers her team leader is Paul Bridger, anoth...er maverick within the agency, she realizes that the mission may be more interesting than meets the eye--and not just for professional reasons. At the same time, in Hamburg, Mahmoud, a recent Moroccan émigré, begins to fall under the sway of a group of radicals at his local Mosque. As his commitment to his new friends deepens, he finds himself torn between his obligations to them and the feelings he's developing towards a beautiful westernized Muslim woman. Their lives will intertwine, as Claire learns the truth about the mission in Hamburg, and Mahmoud's relationship with the radicals pulls him into dangerous waters. And they will both realize--but will it be too late?--that the consequences of their actions could well determine the very future of the United States"--

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Subjects
Genres
Suspense fiction
Mystery fiction
Thrillers (Fiction)
Detective and mystery fiction
Published
New York : Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Penguin Random House, LLC 2021
Edition
First edition
Language
English
Item Description
"A novel"--Cover.
Physical Description
321 pages ; 25 cm
ISBN
9780525657835
0525657835
9781984899156
1984899155
Main Author
Dan Fesperman, 1955- (author)
Review by Booklist Reviews

Set in 1999 in Hamburg, Germany, Fesperman's latest finds CIA agent Claire Saylor posing as the wife of a professor whose new book posits an incendiary interpretation of the Qur'an—the Muslim holy book, he argues, actually says that, upon arriving in heaven, martyrs will receive 72 raisins, not virgins. Riding shotgun with a crackpot prof on a book tour isn't Claire's idea of a plum assignment, so when her former lover, Paul Bridger, reveals that he has another task in mind for her, she's all in. A little-known group of jihadists appears to be planning something big, and a new recruit, Mahmoud, who has a secret of his own, could be the weak link. Jumping between Mahmoud's story—he's torn between his devotion to the cause and his attraction to a Westernized Muslim woman—and the internecine rivalries plaguing the FBI and CIA, Fesperman teases out the details of the jihadists' plan (something about American airliners and flight school). We know enough to know what's coming, but Fesperman uses that excruciating dramatic irony superbly, showing once more, as le Carré did, that spies are often their own worst enemies. Copyright 2021 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Library Journal Reviews

Last seen in Safe Houses, CIA agent Claire Saylor here takes center stage while posing as the wife of an academic with an unsettling new interpretation of the Quran's promise to martyrs. Soon, she's crossed paths in Hamburg with young Moroccan émigré Mahmoud, who's drawn both to radicals at his local mosque and to a Westernized Muslim woman. From Hammett winner Fesperman, claimant to CWA John Creasey and Ian Fleming Steel daggers. Copyright 2021 Library Journal.

Review by Publishers Weekly Reviews

Set in 1999, this gripping if uneven spy thriller from Fesperman (Safe Houses) fictionalizes the story of the terrorist cell in Hamburg, Germany, responsible for the 9/11 attacks. CIA agent Claire Saylor goes undercover, posing as the wife of an academic with an explosive new interpretation of the Koran launching a book at an event in Hamburg. But Saylor's real job is to understand what the terrorist cell is up to—and she soon discovers other American agents are focused on the same group of Islamists. A parallel plot focused on Mahmoud Yassin, an Arab youth who becomes radicalized and joins the cell, raises the tension. Identities and motives are tantalizingly muddled, and Fesperman, a fine stylist, does a good job portraying the elusive, frustrating nature of espionage, but Saylor, more pawn than leader, doesn't seem to be the narrative's obvious fulcrum, and the suspense is undercut by the knowledge that the Hamburg cell succeeded in its mission. With the 20th anniversary of 9/11 looming, this solid effort is worth a look. Agent: Ann Rittenberg, Ann Rittenberg Literary. (July) Copyright 2021 Publishers Weekly.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

"From the author of Safe Houses--An electrifying new novel about a CIA agent and a young Moroccan ex-pat who becomes ensnared in the world of radical Islam. When CIA agent Claire Saylor is told that she'll be going undercover to pose as the dowdy wife ofa stuffy academic who has posited a controversial new interpretation of the Quran's promise to martyrs she assumes the job is a punishment for past unorthodox behavior. But when she discovers her team leader is Paul Bridger, another maverick within the agency, she realizes that the mission may be more interesting than meets the eye--and not just for professional reasons. At the same time, in Hamburg, Mahmoud, a recent Moroccan âemigrâe, begins to fall under the sway of a group of radicals at his local Mosque. As his commitment to his new friends deepens, he finds himself torn between his obligations to them and the feelings he's developing towards a beautiful westernized Muslim woman. Their lives will intertwine, as Claire learns the truth about the mission in Hamburg, and Mahmoud's relationship with the radicals pulls him into dangerous waters. And they will both realize--but will it be too late?--that the consequences of their actions could well determine the very future of the United States"--

Review by Publisher Summary 2

Posing as the wife of an academic who has published a controversial interpretation of the Quran’s promise to martyrs, CIA agent Claire Saylor finds her path on a collision course with a recent Moroccan émigré who has fallen under the sway of radicals at his local mosque.

Review by Publisher Summary 3

From the award-winning author of Safe Houses—an electrifying new novel about a CIA agent and a young expat who find themselves caught up in a dangerous world, whose secrets, if revealed, could have disastrous repercussions for them both.When CIA agent Claire Saylor is told that she’ll be going undercover in Hamburg to pose as the wife of an academic who has published a controversial interpretation of the Quran’s promise to martyrs, she assumes the job is a punishment for past unorthodox behavior. But when she discovers her team leader is Paul Bridger, another Agency maverick, she realizes there may be more to this mission than meets the eye—and not just for professional reasons.Meanwhile, across town in Hamburg, Mahmoud, a recent Moroccan e´migre´, begins to fall under the sway of a group of radicals at his local mosque. The deeper he’s drawn into the group, the greater the danger he faces, and he is soon torn between his obligations to them and his feelings toward a beautiful westernized Muslim woman.As Claire learns the truth about her mission, and Mahmoud grows closer to the radicals, the danger between them builds and spells disaster far beyond the CIA.