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Codename Villanelle

Killing Eve, Book 1
Written by: Luke Jennings
Narrated by: Laura Kirman
Series: Killing Eve, Book 1
Length: 6 hrs and 48 mins
4 out of 5 stars (25 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

She is the perfect assassin.

A Russian orphan, saved from the death penalty for the brutal revenge she took on her gangster father's killers.

Ruthlessly trained. Given a new life. New names, new faces - whichever fits.

Her paymasters call themselves The Twelve. But she knows nothing of them. Konstantin is the man who saved her and the one she answers to.

She is Villanelle. Without conscience. Without guilt. Without weakness.

Eve Polastri is the woman who hunts her. MI5, until one error of judgment costs her everything.

Then stopping a ruthless assassin becomes more than her job. It becomes personal.

©2018 Luke Jennings (P)2018 W. F. Howes Ltd

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

A good yarn

A good story, professionally executed. There is a little bit of American Psycho to the repetition of brand names, but a well constructed confection, like the tea-infused macaroons that the nemesis munches on in the final act. Very tasty.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Kat
  • 2020-05-20

Disappointing

The narration is good but the story is greatly lacking. I bought it because I heard the tv adaptation is great, but I couldn't get past the male driven perspective of female sexuality. I'm sure that there's a good plot in there somewhere but the constant references to sexual exploits/innuendo ruined it for me.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Casey Digital Design Inc.
  • 2019-05-13

My favorite books I have bought from Audible!

I got into this writer's work after watching the stellar TV show "Killing Eve". What I really loved was that although the TV and book's main characters are very alike, the stories are different. The book isn't just a complex rehashed screenplay version of the show. You can read and watch both, and not be experiencing the same stories. Although the show borrows heavily from the books environment and main characters, many parts and stories about Villanelle and Eve are different. To be honest, some of the killings Villanelle carries out in the book, couldn't even be on TV. I was excited about how the characters seem so human; real, confused and conflicted about things they feel they have to do regardless of their feelings. The moral quandary for both the hero and villain, protagonist and antagonist, is fascinating. The narrator was perfect for the story. Her expression, variation and pacing of the storytelling and characters and moods made me feel it was really happening. I went through both audio books "Codename Villanelle" and "No Tomorrow" in less than a week! I often lose interest in a so-so book and never finish them, so this isn't typical for me. Dark, deep, character driven, gritty and engaging books and well worth the money. Hope we'll see more like this soon. I have read a lot of suspense, but there is something unique about the world Jennings creates that draws you into it and you don't want to leave.These are my favorite books I have bought from Audible!

14 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Elena greer
  • 2019-02-15

very exciting and different from the show

the plot is far more complex in this book than in the show. the characters are also very different

5 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Kephra
  • 2019-03-01

the show is way better

the book is nowhere near as interesting as the show which is surprising cuz usually everyone says the book is better but not in this case

4 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Erin
  • 2019-04-20

Awesome

I watched the show before I had the pleasure of reading the book. The show was so great that when I heard there was a book series for them I didn’t wait to get a copy of them both. The book has similarities to the show but the book is more sexual and has more details in certain things that the show leaves viewers to wonder about. The show only took certain parts from the book so don’t think because you read the book it will spoil the show or vice versa. I recommend this book to all killing eve fans, it was truly a great read!

7 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Lorie Christian
  • 2019-03-09

Not the Same as the TV Show -- But Worthwhile!

I thought I would read the gook after watching Season 1 on Hulu. I am glad to say that it is not a duplicate of the show's storyline and, if you like the characters on the show, you should enjoy the book. My problem is that Villanelle is "beautiful" but has a visible scar. When in fact to be unnoticeable, it is best to not stand out in any way. Take a look at most models without make-up -- very plain. But it is their ability to be "transformed" that makes them stars. If Villanelle is trying to become an assassin who is internationally known but elusive -- like the Jackal -- this story-line makes sense. And I enjoy Eve's home life. She is accessible and understandable. However, both women need a little more fleshing out in the books and need more twists in the book like the TV show has. I don't like to know where a story is going before the writer gets there, and some of the scenes in the book I can predict too easily.

The narrator has a bit of a hard time keeping accents straight, which becomes a bit irritating. Other than that it is a good performance.

6 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • S. Luchessa
  • 2019-03-14

skip it

if you want mindless sex and violence with a sprinkling of transphobia, read this. if you want genuine suspense and meaningful characterization/character interactions, watch the show.

7 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Margaret
  • 2020-05-04

Four and a half stars for WHAT?

Male authors, here's a tip. DON'T WRITE FROM A FEMALE PERSPECTIVE. Please. I beg you.

Luke Jennings' spy/assassin novel has two main characters: Villanelle, the sociopathic Russian ex-convict turned assassin. And Eve, the frumpy yet persistent British detective committed to finding the lady assassin and bringing her to justice. What's going on with these characters? Well, one is sexy with cute clothes. The other is dowdy with cheap clothes. What do they eat? One eats champagne and sushi and caviar, the other is ashamed she doesn't cook. One has no feelings. The other feels guilty that she's solving international crime instead of playing bridge with her husband's friends. Other character traits? Uh . . . none. Because all women think about, apparently, is how they look, what they're wearing, and work.

I just summed up the entire character development in one paragraph. Here's a summary of the entire plot: Villanelle kills people. Eve tries to figure out who she is. The reader gets to find out why she kills her first target - a mafioso, but apparently it's not important whom her future quarries are. She just kills them in clever ways, all of which involve her outfits in some way or another.

This could have been SUCH an amazing story, with rich psychological detail and motivations and some real dimension to both female characters. Nope. Guess not.

The audible narrator is a monotone Brit whose voice varies so little that the listener isn't sure if someone's being murdered or putting on makeup.

What a waste of a credit.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2020-04-08

if you love the show do not read this book...

I had to check twice to make sure I didn't have an abridged copy. The book made no sense. I was so disappointed but we have an amazing show out of it so it isn't a total loss!

1 person found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Yosor Ibrahim
  • 2020-02-17

Poor writing and underwhelming plot

I normally don’t read such novels but I heard such positive reviews about this book and the fact that it was turned into a tv series. I found the writing and the plot to be extremely weak and was waiting for something to change my view the entire time with no luck.

Would not recommend it.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • grace e.
  • 2020-05-27

meh

i think if I hadn't watched the series, I'd enjoy it more. maybe rerelease it as one big novel instead of what appears to be 3 novellas.

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  • Juliet Jones
  • 2020-05-15

wicked

Much, much better that the TV adaptation !!
It's a must if you enjoyed the TV series