"Young English actor Lysander Rief is undergoing psychoanalysis in Vienna in 1913. There he begins an affair with Hettie Bull, the consequences of which eventually lead him into the world of espionage. Narrator Robert Ian Mackenzie's rich voice and slightly clipped diction are perfect matches for both the period and the social class of the main characters. Mackenzie's characterizations seem quite effortless, and, with a plot that moves across several European countries, he successfully handles different accents so that they add to the richness of the narrative. His presentation of the female characters is particularly strong, and, as Rief, he presents a likable lead character whose adventures are often beyond his control. The narration is well paced, keeping the reader engaged throughout the story. K.J.P. (c) AudioFile 2012, Portland, Maine"