NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
Paris, 1938. As the shadow of war darkens Europe, democratic forces on the Continent struggle against fascism and communism, while in Spain the war has already begun. Alan Furst, whom Vince Flynn has called “the most talented espionage novelist of our generation,” now gives us a taut, suspenseful, romantic, and richly rendered novel of spies and secret operatives in Paris and New York, in Warsaw and Odessa, on the eve of World War II.
Cristián Ferrar, a brilliant and handsome Spanish émigré, is a lawyer in the Paris office of a prestigious international law firm. Ferrar is approached by the embassy of the Spanish Republic and asked to help a clandestine agency trying desperately to supply weapons to the Republic’s beleaguered army—an effort that puts his life at risk in the battle against fascism.
Joining Ferrar in this mission is a group of unlikely men and women: idealists and gangsters, arms traders and aristocrats and spies. From shady Paris nightclubs to white-shoe New York law firms, from brothels in Istanbul to the dockyards of Poland, Ferrar and his allies battle the secret agents of Hitler and Franco. And what allies they are: there’s Max de Lyon, a former arms merchant now hunted by the Gestapo; the Marquesa Maria Cristina, a beautiful aristocrat with a taste for danger; and the Macedonian Stavros, who grew up “fighting Bulgarian bandits. After that, being a gangster was easy.” Then there is Eileen Moore, the American woman Ferrar could never forget.
In Midnight in Europe, Alan Furst paints a spellbinding portrait of a continent marching into a nightmare—and the heroes and heroines who fought back against the darkness.
Praise for Alan Furst and Midnight in Europe
“Furst never stops astounding me.”—Tom Hanks
“Furst is the best in the business.”—Vince Flynn
“Elegant, gripping . . . [Furst] remains at the top of his game.”—The New York Times
“Suspenseful and sophisticated . . . No espionage author, it seems, is better at summoning the shifting moods and emotional atmosphere of Europe before the start of World War II than Alan Furst.”—The Wall Street Journal
“Endlessly compelling . . . Furst delivers an observant, sexy, and thrilling tale set in the outskirts of World War II. In Furst’s hands, Paris once again comes alive with intrigue.”—Erik Larson
“Too much fun to put down . . . [Furst is] a master of the atmospheric thriller.”—The Boston Globe
Furst's latest historical espionage novel explores the ominous landscape of Europe in the late 1930s. Christi n Ferrar, a young Spanish attorney working in Paris, undertakes a dangerous mission to purchase and smuggle arms for the desperate forces of the Spanish Republic, who are trying to hold off the advances of Gen. Francisco Franco. Furst's material, steeped in the historical complexity of the period, may not be accessible for casual listeners as they seek to distinguish among Ferrar's band of outlaw colleagues and his various romantic conquests. Yet it remains undeniable that Gerroll, the reader of previous productions of Furst's titles, intimately knows the atmosphere and emotions surrounding the author's view of a continent on the verge of collapse. His portrayal of Marquesa Maria Cristina, a mysterious love interest of Ferrar at the center of a complex web of betrayal, is especially engrossing. The tension and sensuality are palpable, even when the events surrounding the story line are hard to follow. Fans already steeped in the genre will appreciate the experience. A Random House hardcover.
gradual ramp up
This one is slow to get going but worth the effort in the end.
A Hero of France
Wonderful WWII story about ordinary people in war.
Too much time for too little
An elongated story with few high points, this novel lacks energy, intrigue and suspense. We do get a protracted look at spy activity around the Spanish Civil War and a kind of spy's travelogue through pre- World War II Europe, but it never quite gets going. Furst knows his history but it's wasted in the service of these only serviceable characters and this strangely uninteresting tale.