Book Review – The Spy

by Paulo Coelho (Hutchinson) ISBN 9781786330543

I am going to start this review by saying that I am not a fan of Paulo Coelho, and as a rule I would not have chosen one of his books for review. I chose it, however, because of the subject matter.

I knew very little about Mata Hari and was eager to learn more about the fabled courtesan. Unfortunately, I didn’t learn a lot. Well, not more than a Google search would conjure up.

In the story, we read letters between her and her lawyer, written in her cell in the days leading up to her execution. The first half we read her letters, the second we read the lawyer’s letters. In my mind, a courtesan who could beguile and seduce hundreds of people was intelligent and intriguing, in this version she is addled, forgetful, vapid and rather useless.

The book was thin, literally and literally.

Mia Botha

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