The Fallen Angel - Daniel Silva Probably not a good idea to start a new series and author by reading book #12, however, the local library had it as an audiobook loan, and not wanting to read another Tom Clancy novel at the moment, decided that I'd give this a listen for a couple chapters or until a more interesting SF novel came along, just to have something to listen to for the moment. Of these tales do readers like me get hooked.
Although there are numerous references to exploits and events from prior books in the series, I gladly skipped over these as the tale of intrigue and personal passion held my attention well onto the final chapter. The writing evokes memories of the spy novels of the 70s and 80s, in particular John LeCarre and Len Deighton. Daniel Silva puts together a deliciously convoluted plot, developed at a fast pace but not without fascinating side trips to augment the back story on art and antiquities. The author's depiction of various modern day situations at the Vatican, Jewish settlements and the Arab Spring are made more realistic by his injection of actual current events. (I think the book could have done without the afterword identifying which aspects of the story were factual and which fictional. This lends to the Dan Brown-phenomena where readers start to take what is claimed to be real as hard journalism. In my opinion, everything in a fiction book is fiction and any claim to be reality is actually a fictionalized account and subject to verification.)
Overall, I enjoyed the book and would recommend it to those who can read it with the weight of fiction and not as a Time magazine article.