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The Spy and the Traitor


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A thrilling Cold War story about a KGB double agent, by one of Britain's greatest historians.

About the Author

Ben Macintyre is the multimillion-copy bestselling author of books including Agent Zigzag, Operation Mincemeat A Spy Among Friends andSAS. He is a columnist and Associate Editor at The Times, and has worked as the newspaper's correspondent in New York, Paris and Washington. He regularly presents BBC series based on his acclaimed books.


The best true spy story I have ever read -- John le Carre
Macintyre does true-life espionage better than anyone else. He has a remarkable ability to construct a narrative that is as taut and urgent as it is carefully nuanced. Here the pace never slackens and the focus never drifts, while Macintyre's insight into his subject's tangle of contradictions never loses its sharpness. It's a tough call, but The Spy and the Traitor may well be his best book yet. -- John Preston * Evening Standard *
A real-life thriller, as tense as John le Carre's novels, or even Ian Fleming's * Economist *
A dazzling non-fiction thriller and an intimate portrait of high-stakes espionage -- Luke Harding * Guardian *
[A] captivating espionage tale. In a feat of real authorial dexterity, Macintyre accurately portrays the long-game banality of spycraft-the lead time and persistence in planning-with such clarity and propulsive verve that the book often feels like a thriller. Macintyre has produced a timely and insightful page-turner. * Publishers Weekly *
It has become a cliche to say that real-life spy stories read like John le Carre, but Gordievsky's personal history makes the comparison irresistible... Macintyre tells the story brilliantly. His book's final third is superbly done -- Dominic Sandbrook, Book of the Week * Sunday Times *
The fact that parts of The Spy and the Traitor read like a pacey thriller is a bonus, but it is based on serious research, including interviews with Gordievsky and anonymous British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS) officers... This is a remarkable story of one man's courage, and of the skill of our much traduced security services. Ben Macintyre tells it very well indeed * The Times, Book of the Week *
You can always rely on this author to tease out fascinating details on the second oldest profession * Sunday Express *
Writing about cases of British espionage success that the public knows little about, he says - 'It takes an investigator of consummate talent and a narrator of equal skill to unearth one of these triumphs and explain it clearly. Ben Macintyre, who is both, has done exactly that. -- Frederick Forsyth * Literary Review *
Macintyre's account brings it to life in vivid technicolor with fascinating new details. He tells it with all the verve we have come to expect from such an accomplished writer * Spectator *
[An] exceptionally rewarding book * Observer *
He writes like a novelist, introducing richly drawn characters whose lives intersect with Gordievsky's. One of the last chapters is as tense as any thriller. No wonder Le Carre liked it * Daily Express *
Thrilling... A real heart-in-the-mouth book * New Statesman *
Reads like a thriller. . . truly nerve-jangling * The Times Books of the Year *
One of the most exciting things I have ever read -- George Osborne * Evening Standard, Books of the Year *
An impeccably researched, compelling read * Independent *

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