This fascinating book contains probably the most expert stories of espionage ever written. For a period of time after it was first published, the book became official required reading for persons entering the British Secret Service.
During World War I, Maugham enlisted with an ambulance unit, but was soon shifted to the Intelligence Department. Although these stories were based on the author's own experiences as a British agent during the war, he emphasized that they were written purely as entertainment, at which, indeed, Ashenden succeeds. Maugham's clarity of style, the perfection of his form, the subtlety of his thought, veiled thinly behind a worldly cynicism, has made him an international figure.
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He was now persuaded that he owed that visit of the Swiss police to the kindly
intervention of the baroness and it looked as though the bridge - party had been
arranged when it was discovered that the detectives had been able to do nothing
Ashenden had always thought botany a tedious science , but Caypor , talking
exuberantly as they walked along , was able to impart to it life and interest . He
must have given it a good deal of study . ' I ' ve never written a book , ' he said .
What class have you got ? ' she asked him . * First . ' ' I ' m glad of that . Father and
Vladimir travel third on account of their principles , but I always feel sick on a train
and I like to be able to lean my head on somebody ' s shoulder . It ' s easier in ...