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Extended Audio Sample Watchman Audiobook, by Ian Rankin Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,086 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Ian Rankin Narrator: John Lee Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: December 2007 ISBN: 9781415947333
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Miles Flint is a government spy who has been making some serious mistakes. His last assignment led to the death of a foreign official in London, and after getting too close to his current subject, he wound up in police custody. But something is wrong at the agency that has nothing to do with Miles’s errors. Why did his last suspect know more about Miles’s assignment than Miles did? Why have so many operatives recently resigned? Has the agency hired someone to watch him?
Despite the Director’s assurances, Miles begins his own internal investigation, to the dismay of his colleagues and even his wife. Then Miles is sent to Belfast to oversee the arrest of two suspected terrorists, a supposedly routine mission that only strengthens his darkest suspicions. Has the Director issued Miles his final assignment?
Determined to discover the truth, Miles enters a dangerous world he normally only observes–even as it threatens his life at every turn. With the riveting suspense and razor-sharp dialogue that have made him an internationally renowned bestseller, Ian Rankin examines an ordinary man forced into extraordinary circumstances, and proves why he “just keeps getting better and better” (Michele Ross, Cleveland Plain Dealer ).

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Listener Opinions

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 False Millennium | 2/11/2014

    " Early Rankin and, therefore, perhaps least adroit. No Rebus and most of the action takes place in London and Ireland. A spy novel where the watcher has to come to the forefront and become more active. What interested me the most? Rankin started writing this on his honeymoon. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Mandy | 2/10/2014

    " I really want to be an Ian Rankin fan but it just hasn't happened yet. I couldn't really get into this book. I'm sure I would have enjoyed it more if I took the time to read more than a few pages at a time. There were a lot of characters and a lot of different things going on and I just couldn't keep it all straight. I'm going to give Rankin another try and hopefully my opinion will be different. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 E | 1/30/2014

    " Having been introduced to Rankin years ago by fellow book-club lovers of detective fiction, I've been working my way through the Rebus series. It was fun to read this early, non-series book and find, to my surprise, that it was as engrossing as the Rebus books usually are. While I"m not usually a fan of espionage-type mysteries, this one focuses more on characters than spy gimmicks and read like a true Rankin find(though I did miss Rebus!). "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 John Machata | 1/26/2014

    " Rankin is out of his element. You can intuit his intelligence, but he did right to let spy thrillers to LeCarre. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Katherine | 1/21/2014

    " Passed the time. Pleasant story, but dated, which I knew going in. Interesting to read seemingly contemporary espionage with no cell phones and no internet. And the plot hinges on a potential "scandal" that seems rather tame by today's POV. I ended up finding the premise--long-time observer drawn into action--more interesting than the plot. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Michelle | 1/20/2014

    " just couldn't get into this Rankin book...Flint is just no Rebus "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Petros | 1/20/2014

    " Good pace, interesting plot, I think that the short length of the book manages to hide its weaknesses. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Dana Woodaman | 1/17/2014

    " Very young Ian Rankin and it shows, nothing at all like his later, great Rebus novels. OK for the beach. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Arwen | 1/1/2014

    " Nearly gave up on this one early on as it's nothing like the usual Rankin I was expecting. However the other day when I had nothing to read,I picked it up again out of desperation and persevered to the end. It did get better as it went on and the end was pretty good. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ricardo | 12/22/2013

    " Rankin definitely has a very peculiar style of writing but so far (this is the second book of his I read), I think his plots lack punch and entertainment "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Teresa | 11/29/2013

    " In the first half there is trouble sorting out who is who among the characterless spies. If the reader makes the effort to do this the last half is worth the effort. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Karis North | 11/25/2013

    " I should have paid attention to Candace, because its not very good so far. I thought this was the first "Rebus" book, and wanted to go back and start the series from the beginning -- but I was wrong. Don't like much about this book so far, and I'm thinking I might not even finish it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lisa | 11/20/2013

    " Good characters, and an easy read. Not such a clear ending, but good overall. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Nicola | 11/19/2013

    " This is one of Ian Rankin's early spy novels. It was a little different to the Rebus books but I liked it alot. I liked the characters and the suspense. Also the fact that it was set in London, Belfast and Edinburgh not just London. This is a must read for Rankin fans. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pat | 11/7/2013

    " Early Rankin. An MI-5 watchman who must develop new survival skills to when he's faced with death along with two IRA bomb makers. Good read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Danderso | 10/21/2013

    " This is an early book by the author of the Rebus books. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Gerald Kinro | 5/14/2013

    " I could not get into this one. Perhaps dialog that seemed out of place to me distracted from the focus and took some urgency away from the story. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Basia Barbara | 1/24/2013

    " Miles Flint, a government spy, is having difficulties. Something is wrong at the agency that has nothing to do with Miles errors. Bad guys seem to know more than he does. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lizzie Blueyondercouk | 6/20/2012

    " A good read, typical spy novel, only a small book so it was easy to read and digest in a short time. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Savannah | 6/19/2012

    " Not very good: the writing is immature even though the concept is fine. I think he's gotten better since. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dedy | 4/22/2012

    " this is a good novel "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kay Robinson | 12/20/2011

    " A brilliant book, much in the Len Deightan style, totally different from the Rebus books I have been reading, a different style of writing. I enjoyed it immensely, couldn't put it down. I haven't yet managed to aquire an original but do live in hope. Highly recommended. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Basiaev | 5/23/2011

    " Miles Flint, a government spy, is having difficulties. Something is wrong at the agency that has nothing to do with Miles errors. Bad guys seem to know more than he does. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Park | 4/12/2011

    " A good read, typical spy novel, only a small book so it was easy to read and digest in a short time. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Redfox5 | 2/16/2011

    " Interesting enough story. Good charcters. Lots of double crossings. A good little spy novel. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kathryn | 2/7/2011

    " It's kind of like if James Bond were just a normal guy. I enjoyed it as something different, plus it's set in the UK, but I couldn't keep all of the characters straight. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Pdxjackie | 11/22/2010

    " I love Ian Rankin, but in this one I needed to take notes to keep all of the characters straight, and there is so much pipe laying that the action of the book doesn't really start until halfway through. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Valerie | 7/23/2010

    " My first by Rankin. I liked it and plan to check out more of his books. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 John | 7/2/2010

    " Rankin is out of his element. You can intuit his intelligence, but he did right to let spy thrillers to LeCarre. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Dana | 5/28/2010

    " Very young Ian Rankin and it shows, nothing at all like his later, great Rebus novels. OK for the beach. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pat | 4/9/2010

    " Early Rankin. An MI-5 watchman who must develop new survival skills to when he's faced with death along with two IRA bomb makers. Good read. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Dawn | 2/2/2010

    " One of Rankin's early books. Quite different from the Rebus series, but ok. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Toby | 12/8/2009

    " An early Rankin, not up to his Rebus stuff, but enjoyable reading nonetheless "

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About the Author
Author Ian Rankin

Ian Rankin is an award-winning crime writer best known for his Inspector Rebus novels. He is a winner of the Edgar Award and the Crime Writers of America’s Gold Dagger Award, among others, and was the recipient of a Raymond Chandler Fulbright Fellowship. He lives in Edinburgh with his partner and two sons.

About the Narrator

John Lee has read more than 100 audiobooks. His work has garnered multiple Earphones Awards and won AudioFile‘s Best Voice in Fiction & Classics in both 2008 and 2009. He also narrates video games, does voice-over work, and writes plays. He is an accomplished stage actor and has written and co-produced the feature films Breathing Hard and Forfeit. He played Alydon in the 1963–64 Doctor Who serial The Daleks.