"The most realistic espionage story I've read."
- Joseph Weisberg, creator of The Americans
During the Arab Spring, an American spy’s final mission goes dangerously awry in this "crackling debut thriller" (The New Yorker) written by a former CIA officer and hailed as "an instant classic" (Paul Vidich, author of Beirut Station).
Shane Collins, a world-weary CIA spy, is ready to come in from the cold. Stationed in Bahrain off the coast of Saudi Arabia for his final tour, he has little use for his mission—uncovering Iranian support for the insurgency against the monarchy. He certainly has no use for his naïve and ambitious twenty-eight-year-old station chief. Then Collins meets Almaisa, a beautiful and enigmatic artist, and his eyes are opened to a side of Bahrain most expats never experience, to questions he never thought to ask.
When his trusted informant inside the Opposition becomes embroiled in a murder, Collins finds himself drawn deep into the conflict. His budding romance with Almaisa—and his loyalties—are upended; in an instant, he's caught in the crosswinds of a revolution. Drawing on all his skills as a spymaster, he sets out to learn the truth behind the Arab Spring, win Almaisa’s love, and uncover the murky border where Bahrain’s secrets end and America’s begin.
"A remarkable debut" (Joseph Kanon, New York Times bestselling author), The Peacock and the Sparrow explores the hazards of involvement, the elusiveness of truth, and the power and perils of belief.