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Summary

Berlin. 1963. The height of the Cold War and an early morning spy swap. On one side of the trade: Martin Keller, an American physicist who once made headlines, but who then disappeared into the English prison system. Keller's most critical possession: his American passport. Keller's most ardent desire: to see his ex-wife, Sabine, and their young son.

But Martin has questions: who asked for him? Who negotiated the deal? Just the KGB bringing home one of its agents? Or, as he hopes, a more personal intervention? He has worked for the service long enough to know that nothing happens by chance. They want him for something. Not physics - his expertise is years out of date. Something else, which he cannot learn until he arrives in East Berlin, when suddenly the game is afoot.

From the master of suspense, this is a return to Joseph Kanon’s heartland, the perilous backdrop of Berlin, now at the height of the Cold War. 

©2022 Joseph Kanon (P)2022 Simon & Schuster Audio UK

Critic reviews

"Kanon is fast approaching the complexity and relevance not just of le Carré and Greene but even of Orwell." (New York Times)

"Joseph Kanon continues to demonstrate that he is up there with the very best...of spy thriller writers...Kanon writes beautifully, superbly." (The Times)

"The critical stock of Joseph Kanon is high." (Guardian)

What listeners say about The Berlin Exchange

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excellent insight into 60s East Germany

Despite my initial reservations about an American narrator I greatly enjoyed this book. Well plotted, it gives good insights into the claustrophobic world of East Germany. I learned about the prisoner exchange programme of which I was previously unaware. Definitely recommended.

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Excellent

This interesting take on the spy genre sees Martin Keller, an American who spied for the Russians and who served 10 years in prison in Britain as a result, being swapped, in 1963, in Berlin, for 3 prisoners who had served time in an East Berlin prison. So, he was free at last in East Berlin ... or was he? The novel is very much in the John Le Carré or Graham Greene mould and admirers of those authors should love this book. It is well written with an intriguing story and psychological depth. There's even an exciting car chase and shooting! It's a book that seems destined to transfer to the cinema screen. It held my attention throughout and this was helped by the outstanding narration by Jonathan Davis. Highly recommended.

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Fantastic

Had to stop what I was doing and listen to the finale. Breathtaking.
Off to buy all Joseph Kanon’s books, and every book Jonathan Davis has narrated.
Bravo!!