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NRB Book Club: Agents of Treachery

Posted on July 21 2010 6:00 am
David Forsmark is the owner and president of Winning Strategies, a full service political consulting firm in Michigan. David has been a regular columnist for Frontpage Magazine since 2006. For 20 years before that, he wrote book, movie and concert reviews as a stringer for the Flint Journal, a midsize daily newspaper.
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What’s better than a good thriller in the summer?  How about 14 good thrillers.

In Agents of Treachery, billed as the first collection of original espionage stories ever assembled, Otto Penzler, literary agent extraordinaire, has assembled an unbelievable collection of today’s most prominent writers of international intrigue.

Among the highlights is Stephen Hunter’s Alistair MacLean-like story story of an OSS operative in occupied France whose mission to blow up a key bridge is more threatened by the communists in the Resistance than by the Nazis he is fighting; and a moody piece by our friend Andrew Klavan about KGB sleeper agent left adrift by the fall of the Soviet Union who begins to suspect his network has been sold to jihadists by the current Russian regime.

Also notable is the opening story, a 50 pager by Charles McCarry, who is often called the American John Le Carre.  I’m sure that’s meant as a compliment, but McCarry is neither a leftist shill, nor a complete pretentious bore.  Hist story about a CIA officer drawn into the coup against an African President-for-Life is a literary event.

The cast of writers is a Who’s Who of spy fiction—including Lee Child, Joseph Finder Gayle Lynds, former head of MI-5 Stella Rimmington and Olen Stenihauer.  But the Klavan, McCarry and Hunter stories alone are worth the price.

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