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Monday, January 08, 2018

Need to Know by Karen Cleveland

Vivian, happily married mother of four, is a Russian analyst with the CIA.  Her assignment to uncover the leaders of a Russian sleeper cell becomes something else entirely when she finally accesses the computer of a suspected Russian operative...and finds pictures of five members of a sleeper cell.  

Her thrilling sense of success is shattered when she realizes one of the pictures is that of her husband Matt.  Instead of immediately notifying her superior, Viv, stunned and disbelieving, hesitates.

Need to Know is a tense and frightening account of a dilemma no one could really expect.  Loyalty to country or family?  Whom to trust?  

I did not know what to expect from this novel, but I could not stop turning the pages.  And the end?  Whoa.

"Karen Cleveland spent eight years as a CIA analyst, the last six in counterterrorism. She has master’s degrees from Trinity College Dublin, where she studied as a Fulbright Scholar, and from Harvard University. She lives in northern Virginia with her husband and two young kids."

This is not an action thriller.  There is no Jason Bourne.  Need to Know is an espionage novel of another type entirely, yet my heart was in my mouth as I struggled through each tension-laden page.

Read in Oct.; blog review scheduled for Jan. 8, 2018.

NetGalley/Random House/Ballentine

Espionage/Suspense.  Jan. 23, 2018.  Print length:  304 pages. 

10 comments:

  1. What a dilemma! This sounds really good and intense.

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    1. It was definitely intense. The kind of dilemma no one expects to deal with.

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  2. That would suck! I mean, what would you do?

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    1. It really makes you wonder, doesn't it?

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  3. Ooh talk about a tense family drama! I typically don't go for these types of books (although I love spy thrillers in film) but a page turner is one not to miss!

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    1. Such a different perspective on the typical spy genre!

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  4. This one sounds really good! I'll be seeking it out and reading it. Thanks for the tip!

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    1. I was not at all certain I'd like this one, but what a suspenseful and thought-provoking look at the way relationships alter one's basic sense of ethical behavior.

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  5. Sounds good. I wonder what's the outcome.

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    1. The outcome was a total surprise for me...and a scary one.

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