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Masaryk Station Audiobook, by David Downing Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: David Downing Narrator: Michael Healy Publisher: Blackstone Publishing Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Series: The John Russell Series Release Date: June 2013 ISBN: 9781620648254
1.84 out of 51.84 out of 51.84 out of 51.84 out of 51.84 out of 5 1.84 (2 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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Berlin, early 1948. The city, still occupied by the four Allied powers, still largely in ruins, has become the cockpit of a new Cold War, and as spring unfolds its German inhabitants live in fear of the Soviets enforcing a Western withdrawal. Here, as elsewhere in Europe, the legacies of the War have become entangled in the new Soviet-American conflict, creating a world of bizarre and fleeting loyalties, a paradise for spies. John Russell works for both Stalin’s NKVD and the newly created CIA. He does as little for either as he can safely get away with, and between the tawdry tasks they set him—assessing dubious defectors in Trieste, running a spy ring in a Berlin VD clinic, rescuing ex-Nazis who might prove useful from Czechoslovakia—he seeks a way to cut himself loose. His partner Effi Koenen has an easier time, starring in a popular radio series and looking after their adopted daughter Rosa, until a woman she helped save in the War turns up on her doorstep, and admits to a child she left behind all those years before, a child now trapped behind the new Iron Curtain.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Downing adroitly elucidates the morass that was post–World War II geopolitics without dumbing down…One can only marvel at his talent for infusing such a rangy cast of characters with nuance and soul.”    

    New York Times Book Review

  • “Downing’s outstanding evocation of the times (as masterly as that found in Alan Furst’s novels or Philip Kerr’s Bernie Gunther series), thematic complexity (as rich as that of John le Carré), and the wide assortment of fully rendered characters provide as much or more pleasure than the plot, where disparate threads are tied together in satisfying and unexpected ways.”

    Library Journal (starred review)

  • “Powerful historical novels.”

    New York Times Book Review, praise for the series

Listener Reviews

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  • 1.666666 out of 51.666666 out of 51.666666 out of 51.666666 out of 51.666666 out of 5 Rob H | 3/21/2021

    " This might be a good book but the narrator absolutely kills it... He's just awful, instead of bringing the story to life he buries it. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 C Smith | 6/21/2018

    " I love this series of books however my enjoyment of the first half of this audiobook was destroyed by the style of the narrator. Whilst previous John Russell series audiobooks left me wanting to hear more, On this occasion I am finding much of the book boring, annoying or virtually unintelligible unless I concentrate hard to decipher what is being said. I accept this is a matter of personal opinion however I am now seriously considering purchasing the paperback version to find out what happens without the pain of listening anymore. "

About the Author

David Downing grew up in suburban London. He is the author of the Jack McColl novels, the thriller The Red Eagles, and six books in the John Russell espionage series, set in WWII Berlin.

About the Narrator

Michael Healy has appeared off Broadway and on national television, most notably on Saturday Night Live for three years, as well as in several national commercials. He continues to hone his craft in Rhode Island, where he has won awards for acting. His audiobook recordings include Mr. Midshipman Easy by Frederick Marryat, The Collector of Lost Things by Jeremy Page, and The Valley of Fear by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.