Once a Spy
Once a Spy
Anchor Books, Mass Market Paperbound, 9780307473141, 447pp.
Publication Date: January 25, 2011
When Charlie Clark takes a break from his latest losing streak at the track to bring home his Alzheimer’s-addled father, Drummond, they’re attacked by two mysterious shooters. At first, Charlie thinks his Russian “creditors” are employing aggressive collection tactics. But once Drummond effortlessly hot-wires a car, Charlie discovers that his unassuming father was actually a deep cover CIA agent . . . and there is extremely sensitive information rattling around in his troubled mind. Now the CIA wants to “contain” him, so the two embark on a wild chase through the labyrinthine world of national security that will force them to confront unspeakable danger, dark conspiracies, and what it means to be a father and son.
“An engaging tale of father-and-son redemption wrapped up in a pedal-to-metal thriller that's told with much humor and great enthusiasm, Thomson’s Once a Spy gives the tried-and-true secret-agent suspense a fresh twist.” —The Birmingham News
“An important debut—as well as a welcome breath of fresh air.” —Lincoln Child
“Thomson has made a spy story that sticks.” —Dallas Morning News
“Nonstop action, thrills, and more escapes than Houdini in his lifetime.” —Chicago Sun-Times
“I like my spy thrillers cold, and Once A Spy is as cold as they come, but with a warm sense of honest family dishonesty and violent sense of humor. . . . A wonderfully fun novel of discovery, matching explosive apartments with explosive revelations.”—Rick Kleffel, "The Agony Column"
“This tale of a doddering old spy and his slightly addled son has plenty of twists and turns, and you’ll find it very difficult to put aside.” — The Globe and Mail
“Gripping. . . . A surfeit of suspense, plot twists, mysterious murders, dangerous chases, narrow escapes, thwarted villains and a few triumphs by an unlikely hero or two.” —Birmingham Weekly
“A thriller with an edgy tone. . . . Heart-stopping, full of surprises, dangerous but crazy/funny at the same time. Roadrunner meets Columbo.” —Newark Star-Ledger
“Once A Spy is the most enjoyable book I've read this year. Utterly original, it is an adrenaline-fueled concoction of sidesplitting humor and genuine suspense. Think Carl Hiassen taking on John Le Carré and the winner is the reader. What a find! I can't imagine not loving this gem of a novel!” —Christopher Reich
“It takes a huge talent to blow dust from the corners of today's comfortable thriller genre. Keith Thomson has that talent, in spades. Once a Spy is an important debut--as well as a welcome breath of fresh air.” —Lincoln Child
“Once a Spy is a wild ride.” —James Bamford
“With great characters, nonstop action, and dark humor, all told in a fresh, energetic voice, Keith Thomson's Once A Spy is the most appealing debut thriller I've read in years.” —Chuck Hogan