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  • The Cardinal of the Kremlin

  • Jack Ryan, Book 4
  • Written by: Tom Clancy
  • Narrated by: Michael Prichard
  • Length: 25 hrs and 19 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (15 ratings)

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The Cardinal of the Kremlin cover art

The Cardinal of the Kremlin

Written by: Tom Clancy
Narrated by: Michael Prichard
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Publisher's Summary

In the Soviet hills of Dushanbe near the Afghanistan border, an otherworldly array of pillars and domes rises into the night. Between the USA and the Soviet Union, no contest is more urgent than the race to build the first missile defense system, and no one knows that more than the two men charged with assessing the Soviet's capabilities: Colonel Mikhail Filitov of the Soviet Union, an old-line warrior distrusted by the army's new inner circle of technocrats, and CIA analyst Jack Ryan, hero of the Red October affair. Each must use all his craft to arrive at the truth, but Filitov gets there first? And that's when all hell breaks loose. Because Filitov, code-named Cardinal, is America's highest agent in the Kremlin, and he is about to be betrayed to the KGB. His rescue could spell the difference between peace and war, and it is up to Jack Ryan to accomplish it.

©1988 Jack Ryan Enterprises Ltd. (P)2014 Bolinda Publishing Pty Ltd

Critic Reviews

"Heart-stopping action...entertaining and eminently topical." ( The Washington Post)
"[Clancy] constantly taps the current world situation for its imminent dangers and spins them into an engrossing tale." ( The New York Times Book Review)
" Cardinal excites, illuminates... A great listen." ( Los Angeles Daily News)

What listeners say about The Cardinal of the Kremlin

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Wonderful experience

Excellent story. Good narration. Enjoyed it thoroughly. Will continue listening to other audio books in the series.

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  • James
  • 15-06-14

Double Agents and defections

What made the experience of listening to The Cardinal of the Kremlin the most enjoyable?

Tom Clancy's writing is well researched and the scope of the story is incredible especially with many twists and turns the story takes.

What did you like best about this story?

The double agent Cardinal. The character's bravery in the face of execution was a brilliant concept.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I really felt for Cardinal when he passed away shortly after his rescue and defection to the United States.

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  • Todd
  • 10-04-14

A great counter-intelligence story

This is my first foray into a Tom Clancy novel. I love the films based on his books, but until now, never thought I had the patience to sit through the written work. This one is a great read in terms of characters and story.

The major story centres around Cardinal, a Soviet double agent working to sneak secrets out of Russia to the CIA. There is also a plot that sees the USA and the USSR racing to complete their versions of a laser defence system. There are a lot of characters in the book, but they are all fully fleshed out and realised. Surprisingly, Jack Ryan himself takes a backseat for much of the story. As the title suggests, the book focuses a lot on Cardinal, and luckily he is a very likable character.

Now to the narration. One of the reasons I was hesitant to listen to the audio versions was that I had heard that Michael Prichard's narration was flat and boring. It is to an extent, but it wasn't bad enough that I had to stop listening. He doesn't have any range as a actor for different characters and when he does try to do different voices, he seems to just give up after about one sentence. The book would definitely have been better with an actual voice actor, but it was tolerable.

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  • Lee Almond
  • 09-09-19

Narration kills it

Couldn't even finish the first chapter, narratiion is awful., awful, awful, want a refund pse

12 people found this helpful

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  • M
  • 13-02-19

Couldn't get into this book. Boring

Struggled with this book. Gave up after 13 chapters. Boring, slow and long winded. A bit like a text book with an explanation about facts rather than any real action. The main character Jack Ryan was hardly present. Just boring.

7 people found this helpful

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  • Joseph
  • 23-06-15

Gripping story, well read

I've never been a fan of war books; normally they are filled with cliché and unrealistic story lines. This book conveys the breadth of the authors knowledge and an ability to create book that you don't want to end.

The narration is also performed well, not over done, just right.

3 people found this helpful

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  • SE75
  • 23-06-20

A hard listen

I have really got into the Jack Ryan stories I find that I like the fact it isn't always the main character that gets the glory. The problem in this books though is that there's too many characters, too many names to remember and I lost track several times and had to relisten. With this story flitting from one set of Russians to another it was hard to understand and keep up, especially on audio book as this happens within every chapter. So I imagine it would an easier read than a listen.
For all that though, I still enjoyed the book.

2 people found this helpful

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  • S. C. Reston
  • 06-02-22

Gripping

I am thoroughly enjoying this series. I think this is the most gripping so far. Lots of detail and the threads of the story will tie you in knots. Enjoy!

1 person found this helpful

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  • William Kyle
  • 13-11-22

another good story in the Ryan universe

like how it followed right on from the hunt for the red october novel

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  • A. H. John
  • 02-10-22

Timeless classic

Even though the story is nearly 40 years old it still rocks. Lots of tension and decent characters. Can’t help picturing Harrison Ford as Jack Ryan

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mrs A.
  • 02-10-22

Awesome

Awesome adventure so just listen to it you will not be disappointed excellent story

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Tarek
  • 14-02-22

A very boring narrator

The narration killed it. I couldn't go more. It was like he was reading a textbook. It may be a great story, but I had to stop.

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  • mr
  • 01-12-21

Classic Clancy

Great narration, great Clancy. They do feel a bit dated now, but the original suite with Red Storm Rising, Red October etc are all genuine genre busters. Love them all.

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  • Typhus.
  • 01-11-22

A joy.

This is the first Tom Clancy novel I listened to and it was brilliant, will be listening to more. Give it a go you will not be disappointed.

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  • Adam Nguyen
  • 03-10-21

another great read

bit slower than his other books but still a great read! would definitely recommend to anyone following the series!

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  • Brian Arpel
  • 27-04-21

One of his best

Like most other Clancy novels I found this one gripping from the first page to the last?
What a storyteller!

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  • Adrian Austin
  • 11-03-21

Faultless presentation of a realistic scenario

Very enjoyable storyline with great twists and plot changes. leading up to a sad but honourable ending which brought everything together.

Quite a realistic and tense situation which I personally found kept me guessing. Flawless delivery once again by Michael, accents have the story life and really helped with the overall delivery.

Will continue to purchase and complete the full set of Jack Ryan novels from Tom Clancy.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-10-20

not as much action as I would have hoped

A bit more action would have been desirable, but overall it was a good listen.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 20-07-20

really enjoyable

very well done. very entertaining, well read, good story line, highly recommend for anyone who enjoys spy novels

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  • Hez
  • 24-06-20

I just can’t get into it

I tried rolling straight from the brilliance that was Red October into this. The reading is slow, tone is boring. If you’re looking for some Valium this is a must.

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  • Debbie
  • 21-02-19

Thoroughly enjoyable

Another enjoyable read which mess in with previous episodes.Amazingly well written and impeccable detail of military workings .Can't wait for the next read

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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-01-19

Great storey

Loved it, multiple store arcs culminating in a thrilling finale. Tom Clancey is so precise it is more like reading a history book than a novel

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  • Scott Agnew
  • 21-01-18

Great

Great listen but make sure you write down all the characters because there are lots of them