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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Ashenden gave him one and on this the colonel scribbled in pencil the name of a
street and the number of a house . When Ashenden walked along next morning
to keep his appointment he found himself in a street of rather vulgar red - brick ...
At the end of dinner ( and they sat over their coffee and brandy till late ) , they
went out into the street and Yvonne proposed that he should take Alix home . He
said he would be delighted . Alix said it was not far and they walked . She told
While they ate a late dinner he made himself very gallant and she played up to
him agreeably ; but when they got up to go and he proposed that she should
come round to his rooms in Waverton Street she told him that a friend had come