We think we know what an espionage thriller is—a suspenseful story that keeps us on the edge of our seats, takes us to fascinating global locations, plays upon some actual existing international intrigue, and considers themes of betrayal, loyalty, passion and justice. It tends to follow a hero who rights a wrong or prevents an attack. This hero is often a spy, and almost always a man. But what if things were different? What if the espionage thriller switched things up? What i
“Who Is Vera Kelly” by Rosalie Knecht (2018) is part coming-of-age novel, part spy story. It doesn’t evolve like an espionage thriller, but I liked it anyway. About a third of the way through the book, I was desperate to know what would happen. It slowly warmed me up, like a good stew after a long hike in the cold. Written in the first person, it’s about a drifting-but-smart young woman, Vera, who embarks on a job with the CIA and ends up in Buenos Aires on her first major as
Washington, DC – Thursday, Feb. 27, 10:00 a.m. EST When Anna woke up, Viktor’s side of the bed was empty. She put on her robe and walked into the kitchen. He was leaning against the counter, drinking espresso. The toaster oven was humming, and its power button glowed orange. “Good morning,” he said. “You look amazing. Oh, wait, you are amazing,” he said, sidling up to her and putting his hands on her waist. “And brilliant.” She wrapped her hands around his neck. They kissed,
Washington, DC – Wednesday, Feb. 26, 9 p.m. EST A waiter rested his tray, loaded with five steins of beer and five glasses of bourbon, on the table next to Anna. Around her sat Viktor, Raven, Mel and Sara. The table was draped in a white tablecloth. A little plastic “reserved” sign stood in the middle. “I can’t believe you got Karl to take a reservation, Mel,” said Anna. “You’re welcome,” Mel said. “But let me be clear—the tablecloth was Karl’s idea.” “What about the drinks?
Washington, DC – Monday, Feb. 24, 3:00 p.m. EST With the Federal Reserve behind her, Anna darted into Constitution Gardens near the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. The wind was blowing, but the sleet had ended. Through the trees to her left, the Washington Monument obelisk glowed in the afternoon sun. Suddenly, she spotted Tanner sitting on a bench facing the Reflecting Pool and rushed over. As soon as he saw her coming, Tanner nodded hello. When she got close, he stood up and ges
Washington, DC – Monday, Feb. 24, 1:00 p.m. EST When Anna arrived home, she was still seething at de Jeanbourg. She knew he was capable of hanging up on her, but when he actually did it, her blood boiled. She jumped out of the car and rushed upstairs without so much as a glance at the lobby lounge. It was as if the people playing billiards, debating the latest social media storm and staring at their laptops weren’t even there. Entering the apartment, she dumped her bag on the
Miami – Thursday, Feb. 20, 4:00 p.m. EST Scowling, Torenmaas waited in his car, idling in a strip-mall parking lot along Coral Way. It was rush hour. People were picking up groceries, stopping at the ATM, grabbing take-out on the way home. Headlights, brake lights and traffic lights formed an impromptu show, as competing music escaped car windows. Lin pulled into the spot next to his, facing the opposite direction. He parked half-in, half-out of the space, and lowered his win
Washington, DC – Tuesday, Feb. 18, 10:00 a.m. EST Anna waited for Sasha Bolokov, assistant vice president for international finance and investment at the World Bank Group, to pick up the phone. She hoped he could get her onto the scene. Right before the fourth ring, he answered. “Hello, Anna! I gather you’ve heard our news,” Sasha said in his proper BBC English. “It’s all over social media,” she said. “I’m sorry for your loss. Everyone must be devastated.” “It is a tragedy,”