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Avenue of Spies Audiobook

Avenue of Spies: A True Story of Terror, Espionage, and One American Family's Heroic Resistance in Nazi-Occupied Paris

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Publisher's Summary

The best-selling author of The Liberator brings to life the incredible true story of an American doctor in Paris and his heroic espionage efforts during the Second World War.

The leafy Avenue de Foch, one of the most exclusive residential streets in Nazi-occupied France, was Paris' hotbed of daring spies, murderous secret police, amoral informers, and Vichy collaborators. So when American physician Sumner Jackson, who lived with his wife and young son, Phillip, at Number 11, found himself drawn into the Liberation network of the French resistance, he knew the stakes were impossibly high. Just down the road at Number 31 was the "mad sadist" Theodor Dannecker, an Eichmann protégé charged with deporting French Jews to concentration camps. And Number 84 housed the Parisian headquarters of the Gestapo, run by the most effective spy hunter in Nazi Germany.

From his office at the American Hospital, itself an epicenter of Allied and Axis intrigue, Jackson smuggled fallen Allied fighter pilots safely out of France, a job complicated by the hospital director's close ties to collaborationist Vichy. After witnessing the brutal round-up of his Jewish friends, Jackson invited Liberation to officially operate out of his home at Number 11 - but the noose soon began to tighten. When his secret life was discovered by his Nazi neighbors, he and his family were forced to undertake a journey into the dark heart of the war-torn continent from which there was little chance of return.

Drawing upon a wealth of primary source material and extensive interviews with Phillip Jackson, Alex Kershaw recreates the City of Light during its darkest days. The untold story of the Jackson family anchors the suspenseful narrative, and Kershaw dazzles listeners with the vivid immediacy of the best spy thrillers. Awash with the tense atmosphere of World War II's Europe, Avenue of Spies introduces us to the brave doctor who risked everything to defy Hitler.

©2015 Alex Kershaw (P)2015 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"A spellbinding tale of triumph and tragedy. Intimate and terrifying, Avenue of Spies is impossible to put down. This is Alex Kershaw at his best." (Annie Jacobsen, best-selling author of Operation Paperclip)
"Avenue of Spies delivers a crisp, pulse-pounding narrative. Kershaw recreates the drama and suspense of war-torn occupied Paris. A taut thriller, the book is centered on an intrepid American family and is filled with a cast of unforgettable characters. Avenue of Spies is like sipping a fine wine: sublime!" (Patrick K. O'Donnell, best-selling author of First SEALs: the Untold Story of the Forging of America's Most Elite Unit)

What Members Say

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Performance


There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

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  • Constance
    26/09/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Gripping, inspirational, and informative!!"

    At the risk of sounding too 'Jerry Maguire', Alex Kershaw had me at 'The Bedford Boys' and I've been of huge fan of his ever since! 'Avenue of Spies' tells the story of an American doctor and his family (wife and son) who, living just steps away from the center of Nazi evil in Paris, became part of the French Resistance. The story is told mainly through the eyes of a 16 year old, now an old man, who loved and worshipped his father and all the good that he stood for. It shares some details about their daily life under Nazi occupation, and without giving away too much (no spoilers here!), explains what happened to them as a result of their choice to fight. And something I really liked about this book is that Alex puts their story into context by explaining what was happening in Paris and how the City of Light managed to avoid total destruction. (No Herr Hitler, Paris is NOT burning!!) I listened to the audio version of this book (great narrator!) that included an interview with Alex where he offered some insight as to how this story came to be. If you're interested in World War II history and enjoy reading about ordinary people doing extraordinary things, I highly recommend adding 'Avenue of Spies' to your reading list!

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Gail
    23/09/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "compelling story of an American doctor and family"

    A well-written and compelling story of an American doctor , his Swiss wife and teenage son who became part of the resistance in occupied France and pay a high price. Each one's individual bravery and selflessness is remarkable. The sadism and evil of the Nazis are well known but continue to be astonishing.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • van
    Upper Marlboro, Md, United States
    11/08/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "HIGHLY RECOMMEND"
    What did you love best about Avenue of Spies?

    This was a well written non-fiction cliff hanger that I listened to while drifting off to sleep. I looked forward to going to bed so I could find out what would happen next.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    I started listening in bed but finally had to listen during the day because I could not wait to find out how it would end.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Howie
    Calgary, AB, Canada
    11/08/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Excellent non fiction....."

    Once again truth can be stranger than fiction, especially during the Nazis reign of terror and not just German ones. Highly recommend for any history fan and those with an interest in WWII.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Gregory
    19/09/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "First rate, heroic story"
    What made the experience of listening to Avenue of Spies the most enjoyable?

    Great story that tells what true heroes are made of.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Avenue of Spies?

    When the father, Dr. Jackson, refused to possibly save himself and stayed with his patients.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Heather Lattanzio
    Manassas, VA
    19/09/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Incredible"

    A riveting story of an amazing family in Nazi held Paris and their incredible ordeal

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • richard engelman
    longmeadow, ma USA
    23/08/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A difficult tale to hear"
    What would have made Avenue of Spies better?

    If there was more details regarding the acts of the gestapo and collaboration by the French. I would like to hear more about the process of having assisted individuals to escape the Nazis rather than just what was stated.


    Would you recommend Avenue of Spies to your friends? Why or why not?

    I felt it was too slow and not sufficiently entertaining. I would not recommend it.


    How could the performance have been better?

    If the narrator had more emotion in the tale it would have been better.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Avenue of Spies?

    I believe less about the patient care and more about the interaction with the Germans.


    2 of 5 people found this review helpful
  • Cookie
    Anacortes, WA, United States
    14/08/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Gold to dross"

    How could this fabulous writer take this story of such bravery in World War 2 and turn it into an unlistenable book that just jumps around and haves some of this most ridiculous similes and silly cliched writting ever. The reader does no favors for this book. How sad, we do have the technology to take World War 2 history and write awesome books this is not one of them.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful

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