Cover Image: The Spy Who Never Was

The Spy Who Never Was

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Nora Baron is out to help the CIA again. She has been contacted to play the part of a spy named Chris Waverly and she will travel to Paris as Julie Campbell a nurse. Chris Waverley does is not a real person but a cover for several people she is told. Now someone has discovered that fact. Nora is just ot go to Paris and meet with an agent and be seen. When the assignment is done she begins to see all was not as she was told or as it seemed. Now what shall she do? She can go home or see what is really happening.
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“The Spy Who Never Was” is a thriller starring Nora Baron, an actress and drama teacher who works part-time as a CIA operative. The op that Nora is sent on in this book turns out to be a ruse. Her assignment is to help capture a CIA extortionist, but the real reason for the op is more sinister and self-serving for her handler.

The main character of this book is very unlike other CIA thriller operatives. She likes people and is honest in her dealings with them. This endears others to her and results in her success as an operative. Nora is not a young sex bomb nor is she a James Bond type. A 50-year-old married woman with a grown daughter and no formal CIA training, Nora has an unusual background for a spy.

In contrast to many thrillers, this one is not an adrenaline rush. However, it is a book that keeps you reading. This book is the third in the Nora Baron series. Having read this one first, I’ve got some catching up to do.
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Another Tom Savage thriller featuring Nora Baron is well written and provides a travelogue of Paris, France and Lucerne, Switzerland that makes you feel like you are there.

Nora finds herself tapped for her third opportunity to be a spy, even if this trip is only for a week, it is in Paris, France!

Nora's husband Jeff is a full-time CIA operative and he's not comfortable with Edgar Cole, or with Nora being the face of a CIA cover for a group of spies calling their ops Chris Waverly/Rose.  

Something isn't right in Paris.  Nora calls on her old friend Jacques Lanier and his family.   Their help saves Nora and aids in her subsequent trip to Lucerne, Switzerland. 

This fast paced novel was exciting reading.
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.First of all what a great book! Nora Baron is a drama teacher, mother and wife but every now and then she leads the life of a CIA operative. In this case she is sent in undercover to assume the identify of a spy, one who is not real but represents three other operatives who are also working undercover. As the story progresses it seems that everything that Nora has been told about this mission may not all be true and the man who recruited her, Edgar Cole, may have his own agenda. I will not say anymore as I do not want to give the plot away. This is a very clever and well written book with an exceptional plot, great characters, intrigue and lots of surprises along the way. I read this book in one sitting as I could not put it down. If you like a great spy story then this will be a real treat. Thank you to Netgalley, the author and publisher for the chance t read this book in exchange for an honest review. I will now be reading more of Mr Savage's work.
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This is the only Nora Baron book I read and it did not need the earlier 2 books to lend a hand. It was easy to follow the story of Julie and 'Julie' which stayed on track.A good thriller, following Nora though the operation to Paris where she accomplishes what she set out for, only to find out that the whole mission was phony.
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This ARC was made possible through NetGalley. My thanks to Alibi - Random House Publishing Group for making this pre-release available.

This is book number three in the Nora Baron series. I had not read the first two. The author had taken me behind the scenes for a close-up look at the cloak and dagger life of CIA field operatives. Mostly one. Tainted with risk, though, not excitingly glamorous. It was a well-written narrative that stayed on point with no flashbacks or flash-forwards. An easy to follow read. It could serve well as a stand-alone. Just what I was looking for.

Nora Baron has been recruited by her boss Edgar Cole. Help was needed to put an end to an attempted blackmail directed at the CIA. Time to go undercover with an assumed identity of a spy who never existed - Chris Waverly. The name had been dreamed up several years ago. Three CIA field operatives had used that name at one time or another. The birth of a legend.

Somehow this classified information had been leaked. To one person anyway. A blackmailer. He went by the code name of TSB. Silence came with a price tag. Ten million dollars. Cash. The CIA had no intention of meeting the blackmailers demands. Nora's assignment was to draw the culprit out into the open. From there, easily scooped up. Mission complete. A low-risk operation. Next stop, France.

Fortunately, she had a fundamental understanding of the language. It would serve her well. But things had gotten off to a rocky start. An understatement. She'd been attacked. That was quick. Just got there. The assailant meant deadly business. Keeping a cool head about her with an instinct to survive, Nora fought off the attacker. Just barely. Lucky this time. So far this had not lived up to it's being the low-risk mission she signed up for.

She was assigned to a three-member CIA team. So she thought. It was learned they were not out of the Paris station as had been claimed. Who were they? Were they working deep cover under Edgar Cole? They had been there for months. Yet, the blackmail attempt had only been issued a few days ago. Maybe this mission was all a ruse. She decided to stick around long enough to find out. It was the least she could do.

In a tangled web of intrigue, Nora was now posing as Julie Campbell, alias Chris Waverly, aka Rose. Her head spinning, it was getting difficult trying to keep the names straight and the identities in order. Somewhere, hopefully soon, this had to make sense. Now, all she needed to do was stay alive. Wishful thinking.

Nora was hot on the trail of finding the real Julie - Chris - Rose. No longer a ghost. Three mysterious CIA operatives all rolled into one. A living legend. Wanted by many. Feared by all. Not knowing what to expect, it led her to Switzerland. Her better sense told her she should have gone back home. It was too late now. She was way in over her head. Would Nora be seen as a friend or foe? Only one way to find out.
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Savage returns with the fiendishly clever Nora Baron, mother, teacher and secret CIA operative. She’s being tasked with taking on the persona of Chris Waverly, a legendary agent. In reality, Chris Waverly is the cover name for several CIA ops all over the world. Recently, these agents have been threatened by a shadowy blackmailer. They are in danger of exposure and death. Nora travels to Paris to try to draw out the blackmailer, but the mission goes from bad to worse as Nora suspects there may be leaks in her own agency. A high-octane ride sure to please fans of the series
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