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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Lake Leman, on fine days so trim and pretty, artificial like a piece of water in a
French garden, in this tempestuous weather was as secret and as menacing as
the sea. He made up his mind that, on getting back to his hotel, he would have a
... he mused, that the great chiefs of the secret service in their London offices,
their hands on the throttle of this great machine, led a life full of excitement; they
moved their pieces here and there, they saw the pattern woven by the
He was known to have succumbed to the fascination of a Swedish lady of
undoubted beauty, but of antecedents that from the point of view of a secret
service agent were suspect. Her relations with Germany were such as to make
her sympathy ...
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - kristykay22 - LibraryThing
This is a compelling, although rather chilly, collection of loosely connected short stories following the intelligence work of Ashenden, a writer turned spy for the British government during World War ... Read full review
LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - lamour - LibraryThing
This is volume three of Maugham's collected short stories. In this volume he has placed his stories that have the same protagonist, Ashendan, who is recruited to move to Switzerland where he will be a ... Read full review