Ashenden, Or: The British Agent
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 watched the detectives warily, but with an expression, he flattered himself, of
amiable unconcern. Fasolt handed back the passport to Fafner, who tapped it
reflectively with a thick forefinger. “The chief of police told us to come here,” he
He leaned back and rolled himself a cigarette. He inhaled a long breathful of
smoke. He shrugged his shoulders. “The Colonel said you were a writer. What do
you write?” “Stories,” replied Ashenden. “Detective stories?” “No.” “Why not?
Every now and then she gave the detectives a hurried, sullen glance. Ashenden
wondered if she ... Ashenden made a gesture to the first detective and he took a
pair of handcuffs out of his pocket and advanced towards her. At the sight of them
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - lamour - LibraryThing
This is volume three of Maugham's collected short stories. In this volume he has put his stories that have the same protagonist, Ashendan who is recruited to move to Switzerland where he will be a ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - jimgysin - LibraryThing
It's easy to see why this one is considered an archetype of espionage fiction. The fact that the book was first published back in the late 1920s means that some of the dialogue and narrative will ... Read full review