An Autumn evening in 1937. A German engineer arrives at the Warsaw railway station. Tonight, he will be with his Polish mistress; tomorrow, at a workers' bar in the city's factory district, he will meet with the military attache from the French embassy. Information will be exchanged for money. So begins The Spies of Warsaw, with war coming to Europe, and French and German operatives locked in a life-and-death struggle on the espionage battlefield. At the French embassy, the new military attache, Colonel Jean-Francois Mercier, a decorated hero of the 1914 war, is drawn in to a world of abduction, betrayal and intrigue in the diplomatic salons and back alleys of Warsaw. At the same time, the handsome aristocrat finds himself in a passionate love affair with a Parisian woman of Polish heritage, a lawyer for the League of Nations. Colonel Mercier must work in the shadows, amidst an extraordinary cast of venal and dangerous characters -- Colonel Anton Vyborg of Polish military intelligence, last seen in Furst's The Polish Officer; the mysterious and sophisticated Doctor Lapp, senior German Abwehr officer in Warsaw; Malka and Viktor Rozen, at work for the Russian secret service; and Mercier's brutal and vindictive opponent, Major August Voss of SS counterintelligence. And there are many more, some known to Mercier as spies, some never to be revealed. The Spies of Warsaw is Alan Furst's finest novel to date -- the history is precise, the writing evocative and powerful, more a novel about spies than a spy novel -- exciting, atmospheric, erotic and impossible to put down.
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'[Furst's] stories combine keen deductive precision with much deeper, more turbulent and impassioned aspects of character... Mr. Furst... is an incomparable expert at this game.' NEW YORK TIMES 'Alan Furst's spy fiction is serious, even solemn: a good but never light read.' -- Jessica Mann LITERARY REVIEW 'Furst's tales... are infused with the melancholy romanticism of Casablanca, and also a touch of Arthur Koestler's Darkness at Noon.' THE SCOTSMAN 'Furst's latest excellent spy thriller... so elegant and genteel - beautfully written... your heart will be pounding with tension.' THE GUARDIAN 'Throughout, the author's delight in the process of espionage shines through' TLS 'Furst's uncanny gift for place and period lift his city, and its dubious cast of characters, well above the espionage norm.' -- Boyd Tonkin THE INDEPENDENT 'As ever the atmosphere is charged and the writing elliptic' DAILY TELEGRAPH 'Furst's writing is so effortless, it nearly disappears.' TIME OUT 'Furst's research is such that one gets the impression that he hasn't just travelled, he has time-travelled.' -- James Lovegrove FINANCIAL TIMES 'alongside... is a love story that is told in such a lyrical fashion that it bcomes enthralling... I would recommend this novel without reservation.' -- Vincent Banville IRISH TIMES 'Furst draws a wonderfully convincing picture of a continent on the verge of destruction.' -- Andrew Taylor THE SPECTATOR
About Alan Furst
Alan Furst has lived for long periods in France, especially in Paris, and has travelled as a journalist in Eastern Europe and Russia. He has written extensively for Esquire and the International Herald Tribune. He lives in New York state.
The Spies Of Warsaw by Alan Furst
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