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Publisher's Summary

Orwell Prize-nominated journalist Heidi Blake uncovers exclusive details of Vladimir Putin’s worldwide meddling with dissident voices. This is the explosive and true story of how Russia operates in our cities, right under the noses of the most powerful nations in the world, and why even they can’t stop him.

Russia’s resurgent encroachment into the West is the defining geopolitical story of our time - and a topic of insatiable public fascination. Putin’s use of targeted killing is designed to crush opponents, frighten critics into silence, exterminate traitors and wipe out the Western financial facilitators who make flight from Russia possible. In one sense this is nothing new: the Russian president is the consummate FSB man and an heir to Soviet-era autocrats who used the country’s feared security service to eliminate all opposition. But the growing pattern of brazen assassinations outside Russia’s borders is a mark of an emboldened state with burgeoning global ambitions.

Set in the heart of our cities, From Russia With Blood will analyse the geopolitical consequences of this strategy and the dangers of the West’s flat-footed response. Drawing on the expertise of Russian experts, intelligence insiders, academics and government sources in the US and Europe, Heidi Blake will uncover what has been kept from the public up until now. This audiobook is based on hundreds of thousands of documents, crime scene evidence, computers and mobile phones, surveillance footage, high-level intelligence briefings from serving officials and hundreds of insider interviews - but this is only the tip of the iceberg.

Supported by a vibrant cast of characters and a fast-paced narrative, this story will draw on original reporting to tell the full story of how Russia refined the art and science of assassination as a form of statecraft. But it will also offer insights into its formidable cyber powers, sprawling international propaganda machine and fearsome security, espionage and organised crime complex to create a frighteningly effective strategy for growing global dominance. This is an unmissable guide to how Western governments failed to guard those living on home soil against the threat, the dramatic events of the past year and their alarming significance for the future.

©2019 Heidi Blake (P)2018 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic Reviews

"A real life thriller, packed with characters that even John le Carré couldn't dream of. If this doesn't scare you, then you're not paying attention." (Oliver Bullough, author of Moneyland)

"Breathtaking in its scope and commendable in its detail.... Blake’s triumph is that she can pull an extraordinary tale of larceny on a grand scale, corruption of unprecedented levels and serial murder into a brisk, comprehensible narrative." (Sunday Herald)

"A spellbinding and heart-in-your-throat true story of Russian money and serial killing by agents of the Russian state in London.... In addition to being an unputdownable story, her shocking expose will hopefully change the way the British authorities act on crimes emanating from Russia in the future." (Bill Browder, author of Red Notice)

What listeners say about From Russia with Blood

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thrilling listen!

The narrator was great and easy to listen too. Very interesting book! Very much a recommended listen .

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Gripping!

This was a fascinating and gripping story. Can't believe that this has all happened, it's like some kind of fictional thriller. Narrator did a good job as well, highly recommended.

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  • Orca
  • 03-09-2020

Excellent journalism

Extremely well researched and reported work. Jaw-dropping insights into the deep end of a very particular money, power and corruption game, how the UK let it in, and is now stuck with it.

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  • Ben H
  • 04-12-2019

Great story but bizarre narration

This is a fascinating book and very well researched, but the bizarre, sing-songy way it's narrated, with odd intonation and elongated vowels, makes it almost unlistenable. It's narrated as if it's a Harry Potter novel being read to a child, rather than non-fiction.

10 people found this helpful

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  • Sion
  • 29-11-2019

Great book let down by narrator

This book gives a really interesting and frightening look into Russia's interference with the rest of the world... but the narrator's pleasant and friendly voice doesn't match the dark and serious content at all. Maybe it's just me, her voice felt better suited for a children's adventure book...

4 people found this helpful

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  • Pete
  • 10-01-2020

The worst narration of a book EVER

Ye Gods!! How did the narration for this book get pass Quality control? The topic is as expected a serious issue so is let down a bit by some of the overly dramatic writing style But the narration, well that is something all together.I have listened to audible books for years & this is so bad, It`s dreadful. The best I can describe is, imagine you are one of a bunch of five year old kids sat in a semi circle and some twenty something girl is doing their earnest best to keep your interest and entertain you with dramatic story telling about bogey men and baddies. Speeding up, slowing down, pausing for effect,adding dramatic inflection, changing pitch and tone at every turn. And then the best bit............... The most awful, I mean dreadfully awful attempts at adding national accents to some of the alleged words of people featured... it`s pure comedy gold because it is so badly done, I am certain people have been prosecuted for such poor stereotypical delivery "See you Jimmy, och aye, comrade!" Anyway rant over.. I suspect my valid comments will be binned by the review police.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Karl Dolan
  • 20-04-2020

Brilliant book

Great book, filled with jaw dropping stories about how the Russians are on an international killing spree with the UK acting as an unwilling accomplice. The book does not get a 5 star review for one reason-the narrators continuous cringing attempts at accent imitation especially the French accent.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Martin Walsh
  • 11-03-2020

This book filled in so many gaps

A compelling story that taught me so much, especially as I thought I was already clued up on this subject. Some reviews criticised the narrator but I thought her performance and style were perfect - apart from a dodgy French accent towards the end of the book, but this was very brief. All in all one of the best books I've bought.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Nick Thompson
  • 22-01-2020

Wow

A stunning insight in to the Kremlin and its effect on the West. It such a great listen and given the issues involved a very brave and thoroughly researched piece.

1 person found this helpful

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  • A. D. Buckingham
  • 31-12-2019

Lacking depth and insight

In principle the story of Putin's rise to power and his control of the oligarchs is fascinating, but the account in this book reads like a series of Wikipedia entries or a collection of newspaper stories. In other words, there's a lack of depth and originality to this book. It does not feel at all well researched and falls into lazy stereotypes too easily. The narration is also poor. Pronunciation is idiosyncratic in places and there are some bizarre errors. For example, sawn off shot gun is referred to as 'sword off short gun". In sum, unrewarding to listen to.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Mojody
  • 12-11-2020

Just had to give up on this!

So very very disappointed with the audio rendition of this book … A One Star rating for the narrator is without doubt, one star too many! I couldn’t listen to the substance of what was being read simply because the narration is absolutely dire; sickly, over dramatic and exceptionally weird intonation and pronunciations. I bought a copy of the book instead and it really is a very good (if somewhat disturbing) read, hence the 5stars for “Story”. However, one positive note, I will definitely and positively be avoiding any future audio book read by Marisa Calin.

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  • A J Aitchison
  • 03-08-2020

Riveting from start to finish.

There were a lot of key protagonists to remember the names of and at the beginning of the book I worried that I'd struggle to remember them. I needn't have worried - they were expertly interwoven into the proceedings in a way that kept them all to mind.

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  • MR AP DAWSON
  • 28-06-2020

Great story - not sure about the accents!

An incredible look at UK-Russia secret relations and the criminal underworld link to high profile investments. Heidi has done an amazing job to link complex threads of subterfuge, lies and cover-ups to paint a remarkable story.

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