Carr, Alex. An Accidental American. New York: Random House, 2007. c.240p. ISBN 0-8129-7708-4. [ISBN 978-0-8129-7708-0]. pap. $9.95. Fiction

Nicole Blake, the accidental American of the title, is a forger who has gone straight after serving six years in a French prison. Her quiet life in the Pyrenees is shattered when American agent John Valsamis pressures her into tracking down her former lover, Rahim Ali, a suspected terrorist living in Lisbon. When Valsamis shoots Rahim, Nicole finds herself on the run and in possession of an invoice for five dirty bombs destined for Iraq. At the same time, Sabri Kanj, a captive being tortured in Amman, Jordan, asks to see former CIA director of operations Richard Morrow, claiming to know the identity of an American mole who had advance knowledge of the 1983 bombing of the American embassy in Beirut. The connections among all these characters, who are not what they seem, are slowly revealed as Nicole struggles not only to survive but to understand a complicated past that includes the death of her Lebanese mother in a car bombing. A tightly entwined plot with numerous reversals, poetic descriptions, thorough research, and a lightly fictionalized treatment of America’s Mideast travails make this an intriguing read. Recommended for popular fiction collections; Carr is a pseudonym for novelist Jenny Siler (Easy Money).

LJ, 131, no. 20 (December 2006), 106.

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