*Porter, Henry. Brandenburg Gate. Atlantic Monthly Press. April 2006. c448p. ISBN 0-87113-940-5. $24. Fiction.

Porter (Empire State), the British editor of Vanity Fair, returns with a top-notch Cold War thriller set in 1989 in the weeks leading up to the fall of the Berlin Wall. Rudi Rosenharte, a former agent of the East German Ministry for State Security (a.k.a. the Stasi), is being forced back into service. The Stasi has arrested his twin brother, Konrad, and is holding the man’s family hostage. In his quest to free Konrad, Rudi must walk a fine line among at least four intelligence services—the British SIS, the CIA, the KGB, and, of course, the Stasi. The East Germans believe that one of Rudi’s old lovers wants to pass secrets to him, but he knows the woman died years earlier. What he doesn’t know is who is manipulating whom. Beautifully researched and rich in incident and intriguing characters, this tour de force on a par with John le Carré has as many twists as a mountain road but is never confusing. Readers will root for the protagonist as he struggles to free his brother’s family. Highly recommended for all public libraries.

LJ, vol. 131, no. 4 (March 1, 2006), 79.


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