The Spy

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I mean, we left Mata Hari at such a crucial point, she had just recited Oscar Wilde's The Nightingale and the Rose in such beautifully tragic way, and I was starting to feel that more attached to her. I'm still contemplating as to why this phenomenal book was ended with his point of view.

However, I am eternally grateful that The Spy introduced me both to Paulo Coelho's fast-paced writing and the history behind Mata Hari, who I'll be researching for the next few hours. To put it simply, this was an educating, insightful and unputdownable read that puts everything in perspective. I started and finished this in the same day.

Also, I really appreciated the pictures scattered throughout this novel: I can't wait to explore more of Paulo Coelho's works and novels next.

THE SPY 02 By DJ MURPHY +255767925212

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Buy a Coffee for nat bookspoils with Ko-fi. View all 3 comments. View all 18 comments. The Spy is the story of Mata Hari, told first in her voice and then from the point of view of one of her male admirers. Paulo Coelho isn't at his best in this novel. He prefers and excels at metaphorical stories. For example, in this tale, Coelho has Mata Hari comparing herself to the nightingale that impaled itself on a thorn to grow a bright red rose for a young man in love.

I get what he was reaching for- but I think this tale would have been told better through details rather than metaphors. Als The Spy is the story of Mata Hari, told first in her voice and then from the point of view of one of her male admirers. Also, it's so short. The audiobook was only a couple hours long. It wasn't nearly long enough to do Mata Hari's life justice. I first learned about the fascinating life of Mata Hari in Inspired!: There were enough unbelievable things that happened in Mata Hari's life to make a compelling historical fiction.

Sadly, this didn't quite fit the bill for me. If you're going to read a Coelho novel, may I recommend The Alchemist. Which is also a novel people love or hate. I fell on the side of love.

The Spy Who Dumped Me

View all 7 comments. Mar 21, Ninoska Goris rated it did not like it Shelves: Uno de mis libros favoritos de todos los tiempos es de Paulo Coelho, El Zahir. Estaba impaciente por leerlo y Nov 30, Jennifer rated it really liked it Shelves: Did she serve as a double agent for Germany and France throughout World War I or did a malicious allegation with zero evidence destroy her life?

In this re-imagining based on nonfiction accounts, author Paulo Coelho says no. Her only crime was her choice to be an independent woman, exposing the world to feminism for the very first time, and for that she lost her life by firing squad. As Mata Hari waited for execution, one of her last requests was for a pe Mata Hari As Mata Hari waited for execution, one of her last requests was for a pen and paper to write letters.

Over the past two decades, Germany, Holland, and the U. Coelho combined information from these letters, a researched timeline, along with creative liberties to write a first-person account of Mata Hari's life starting from about age sixteen. Coelho's summarized portrayal of this amazing woman. I wish this novel was longer because I wanted to know her much more. However, I highly respect that Mr. Coelho didn't just make stuff up to fill the pages. I'd like to think that The Spy is as fact-based as possible and if the book feels too short it's because you can't write what you don't know.

Fairly recently, I read another re-imagining about nonfiction characters where the opposite was done and I have lost all respect for that particular author. The Spy is the first book I have ever read by Paulo Coelho and I look forward to exploring his other work. But most importantly, I look forward to doing my own research about the amazing Mata Hari. If you enjoy stories about strong women who push the boundaries for our gender, then do some research for yourself Sometimes it means repentance, contrition, confession of sins, the promise not to repeat what we did wrong.

At other times it means going beyond what we know to stand face to face with the unknown without recollection or memory, without understanding how it will be to take the next step. We are bound to our lives, to our pasts, to the laws of what we consider right or wrong, and suddenly everything changes. We walk the street without fear and greet out neighbors.

But moments later they are no longer our neighbors. They put up fences and barbed wire so we can no longer see things as they were before. So it will be with me. With men who decided to find it easier to let an innocent woman die than to recognize their own mistakes. It is a shame that what happens today already happened yesterday and will happen again tomorrow. It will continue to happen until the end of time or until man finds out he is not only what he things but mostly what he feels. The body tires easily but the spirit is always free and will help us get out one day from this infernal cycle of repeating the same mistakes every generation.

Although thoughts always remain the same, there is something stronger, and this is called love. View all 9 comments. Dec 13, Rebbie rated it it was ok Shelves: This book reminds me that I shouldn't read historical fiction novels that are based on specific people, rather than a general time period.

I'm too critical, and no doubt I expect too much from authors who are brave enough to take on the daunting task of getting inside another person's mind. I'm of the belief that if you dare to feel that you have the insight into someone else's inner workings and what makes them tick, you better make damn sure that your instinct of human nature is sharp and on po This book reminds me that I shouldn't read historical fiction novels that are based on specific people, rather than a general time period.

I'm of the belief that if you dare to feel that you have the insight into someone else's inner workings and what makes them tick, you better make damn sure that your instinct of human nature is sharp and on point. Otherwise, you have exactly what happened with this story. Coelho allowed his personal political feelings of feminism to cast a shadow over the book, which undermines the integrity of Mata Hari's true story. Regardless of how he feels, a modicum of extra research would have enlightened him to the fact that Mata Hari was a prostitute out of sheer necessity; it was either that or starve to death.

It was NOT to explore some raging undercurrent of sexual desire that she felt entitled to explore at the expense of her daughter's safety.


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How Coelho fails to see how this would actually make MH seem less sympathetic truly boggles the mind. She also didn't leave her daughter with a violently abusive man so easily, especially to chase some pipe dream at the time of female liberation and equality. These very specific frame of thoughts were not actively investigated with such gusto until decades later, when women had the emotional support of other women, just so they could avoid the exact situation MH was in: To think otherwise is nothing more than a slap in the face to all of the women and children who have been adversely effected by the lack of options for women to leave an abusive husband, and earn the income it takes to provide for their children well enough to escape severe poverty.

And that's why I gave it 2 stars, even though it was painful for me to do so. His heart might have been in the right place, but his agenda should've been left out of this story. This is the wrong platform to use for it, especially as it does not apply here. However, I do love Paulo Coelho, and I look forward to reading more of his books. View all 11 comments. Nov 19, Aditi rated it liked it Shelves: To die, to sleep, to pass into nothingness, what does it matter? Everything is an illusion. She is an epitome of grace, individuality, extravagant lifestyle, exquisite and unique fashion style, independence and her erotic dance moves in the early 20th century in Paris.

Margaretha Zelle, a Dutch girl born into a middle class family in Holland, but in her high school she gets raped by the school principal and after her parents' divorce, she moves with an uncle to get teacher's training in order to work as a teacher in a kindergarten. One fine day, she replies to a matrimonial ad in the newspaper for an army man looking for a wife, and within three months of meeting the man, she gets married to that army personnel and moves to Indonesia, but sadly her life turns tragic as she soon becomes victim to sexual and physical abuse by her husband. But her painful ordeal with marital life soon comes to an end, when the suicide of another army's wife irks her up and fills her with promise and strength to leave her husband.

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She makes her way to Paris, where her talent of dancing is spotted by a wealthy man, who gives her the opportunity to showcase her talent in the opening of his museum. And within few months she reaches the top as she performs in one lavish party to another posh hotel auditorium, until she becomes a household name in all of Paris. Her exquisite taste for fashion earned her the hearts of many wealthy men from bankers to industrialists who only provided extravagance lifestyle for her, but she had little idea about the approaching war in the background.

Soon she gets caught up in the crossfire of the war, as she is asked to work as a German spy, but after traveling back to Paris from Berlin, she works as a double agent from the France government, and within months, she is arrested by the French officials who threw her up in the prison, finally meeting her inevitable end of execution by the French in Paris, the city where she became Mata Hari.

The author has resurrected this remarkarble and legendary dancer and spy through this book, although he fails to explore into the depth of the great persona of Mata Hari thereby leaving her an incomplete portrait of her. The historical facts accurately syncs with the story line, and it proves that the author has done his research thoroughly. Not only that the readers will be carried away to that world before the Great War in Paris where glitters, extravaganza and exquisite artistic qualities gave a definition to the then Paris. The author strikingly captures the backdrop and the readers will be bound to time travel top that era when everything shimmered golden and people were defined by their rich tastes in art, music and dance.

From the clothes to the food to the streets to the hotels to everything depicted that French flair that the author has managed to portray through the tale of Mata Hari. The author's writing is okay and not that great unlike his previous books, although the writing is laced with way too historical facts and less emotions, that will be difficult for the readers to contemplate with the story line. The narrative is lucid laced with the aristocratic flair that sync well with the demeanor of the central character.

The pacing is really fast, but that does not support a biographical book like this one, as it lacked depth thoroughly. The character development is not that good, although the readers will get a thorough and vivid look into the life and style of Mata Hari, the woman who was accused as a spy based on meager evidence. In one word, Mata Hari's life is painful and sad even though she drowned herself in an exorbitant means of life, always found in the arms of her wealthy married men, and her indifference to the war became her enemy.

Mata Hari was a daughter, lover, wife and a hopeless mother who could not save her children from the wrath of the her husband's enemies. Her beauty and grace is the only thing that comes first into the minds when people remember her name, and not to mention her boldness from stripping her clothes while dancing Java- nese dance style. In a nutshell, this accurate autobiographical story penned by Coelho is highly compelling and enlightening enough to give the readers a taste of the notorious dancer and spy of the twentieth century, Mata Hari.

Vivid, bright and colorful account of Mata Hari's life but alas it lacks depth. View all 4 comments. Finally a solid read! This one was short enough where I started this morning and was able to finish it this afternoon. Fascinating story of Mata Hari. Basically, the woman was executed for being considered a double agent but on such flimsy evidence that her execution was seemingly to save the asses and protect the reputation of the powerful men she slept with.

A woman that once again rang that tired old bell "I was born at the wrong time. Mata Hari was persecuted for having the gall to want to live a free and independent life.

This was an interesting story told in letters - ones by Mata Hari and her lawyer that failed to get clemency for her. Did you know the custom was to cut the head off and hand it over to government representatives? Her head was kept in the Anatomy Museum in Paris until one day in !! But unfortunately this lifestyle also brought her under suspicion. In , Mata Hari was arrested in Paris, and accused of espionage. She then was put on trial and executed for treason, and in all likelihood was innocent. Mata Hari would be considered a feminist hero in today's world, a woman who overcame a difficult childhood-raped at 16 by her headmaster at school, escaped an abusive marriage, and suffered the loss of her infant son-who was poisoned, to revamp herself as an artist who clearly made a name for herself.

This short novel left me wanting to learn more about Mata Hari, a woman who lived outside-the-box, even if it ultimately cost her her life.

Perhaps that is not the right word. I was never innocent, not since I first set foot in this city I love so dearly. I thought I could manipulate those who wanted state secrets. I thought the Germans, French, English, Spanish would never be able to resist me—and yet, in the end, I was the one manipulated. The crimes I did commit, I escaped, the greatest of which was being an emancipated and independent woman in a world ruled by men.

View all 8 comments. Wonderfully told Paulo Coelho is a master of the written word and just so incredibly sad to read. Mata Hari's voice speaks through the pages eloquently, passionately and sensually. I really enjoyed this After picking up this book, I did some research on Mata Hari before reading the book. Obviously, the book cannot compare to the events that transpired in her life, but I believe Paulo Coelho gave this woman a voice that was condemned by a rigorous society. You can immediately tell that this is a work by Coelho because of his use of metaphors and prose, but it is a delightful read that I, personally, needed at the moment.

Instead of picking up a self-help book no shame in that, I do too! I felt that it was rushed because it switches narrators unexpectedly. Coelho could have finished with Hari and explained the rest without the need for the lawyer's response. Otherwise, there are some gems in this book. The Spy made me wonder why adults complicate situations to the extent that war is "necessary" for a resolution.

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Also, the novel made me think that retaining the POV of a child, is a life filled with happiness and the moment that escapes us, we are condemned to our own painstakingly dug graves. Coelho's novels always make me reflect on my own beliefs, so even though the ending wasn't that great, I would still recommend this to anyone who feels that being an "adult" by societies standards isn't all it's cracked up to be. Mar 03, Terri rated it liked it Shelves: I was disappointed in this book considering that the Brazilian author is Paulo Coelho, which is why I wanted to read it.

My knowledge of the dancer and famous spy, Mati Hari, is still scarce after reading the book. I felt that the author "phoned it in" and it felt superficial and thin. Mati Hari was a Dutch exotic dancer and mistress to powerful men both French and German who was convicted of being a spy for the Germans in World War 1.

She was found guilty and shot to death by a firing squad I was disappointed in this book considering that the Brazilian author is Paulo Coelho, which is why I wanted to read it. Benny 6 episodes Uri Gavriel Colonel Salim Hatoum 4 episodes Waleed Zuaiter Sarah 3 episodes Reymonde Amsallem Zeinab 3 episodes Ahmed Boulane Abou Mahmoud 3 episodes Ait ben Azzouz Brahim Baathist customer 3 episodes Alexander Siddig 3 episodes Maria Zreik Edit Details Official Sites: Add the first question. Audible Download Audio Books. Dan Peleg 6 episodes. Nadia Cohen 6 episodes.

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