Although categorized as a novel, it is really a group of mostly unrelated short stories featuring Ashenden, a writer recruited during World War I by a British Intelligence Officer known only as R. A reluctant agent, doing what he must but finding no joy in it, Ashenden meets with both success and failure, and sometimes with no clear result. It will cover some comments of contemporary reviews and the description of two editions. Pages may have considerable notes/highlighting. The character appears briefly in the book The Bloody Red Baron by Kim Newman. Reviewed in the United States on January 31, 2019, Somerset Maugham's "Ashenden" harkens back to a classical era when espionage writing was literature, not a first treatment of a movie screenplay. The stories collected in Ashenden are rooted in Maugham's own experiences as an agent, reflecting the ruthlessness and brutality of espionage, its intrigue and treachery, as well as its absurdity. Based on the writings of Somerset Maugham Ashenden, or, The British Agent Mass Market Paperbound W. Somerset Maugham. It is partly based on the author's experience as a member of British Intelligence in Europe during the First World War. Ashenden: Or the British Agent is a 1927 collection of loosely linked stories by W. Somerset Maugham. Ashenden or The British Agent by W. Somerset Maugham Impress Best Mysteries . His tone combined a certain waspishness, and indeed emotional coldness (no doubt a result of an emotionally cold childhood) with sudden, unexpected displays of heart. Ashenden is a novel about the activities of a British spy (Ashenden) operating in several locations in Europe during World War I. It was loosely based on Somerset Maugham’s experiences as an MI6 agent during World War One. Please try again. Buy a cheap copy of Ashenden: Or The British Agent book by W. Somerset Maugham. It is partly based on the author's experience as a member of British Intelligence in Europe during the First World War. After a number of similar operations, Ashenden is sent to Imperial Russia during the 1917 revolution, as an "agent of influence", to do what he can to keep Russia in the war against Germany. Title: Ashenden: or, The British Agent Author: Maugham, W. Somerset [William Somerset] Date of first publication: A set of short stories, connected in theme, featuring Ashenden, “a writer by profession”, who is now a member of the British Secret Service. The protagonist breaks with the tradition of the gentleman crime sleuth in order to cope with modern crimes no less than ungentlemanly criminals. Ashenden: Or, The British agent by Maugham, W. Somerset and a great selection of related books, art and collectibles available now at AbeBooks.com. [2] Maugham, who was in the British Secret Service in Europe during the war, based a number of his stories on his own experiences. ~ ThriftBooks: Read More, Spend Less I enjoyed the stories in this book. We are doing the reading once a week using Skype. Women wait in a long, endless line, night and day, without knowing... Free Shipping on all orders over $10. Secret Agent is a 1936 British espionage thriller film directed by Alfred Hitchcock, adapted from the play by Campbell Dixon, which in turn is loosely based on two stories in the 1927 collection Ashenden: Or the British Agent by W. Somerset Maugham. AU $20.16 +AU $3.30 postage. The Magician by W. Somerset Maugham, Horror, Classics, Literary (Paperback or So. HEINEMANN LONDON MELBOURNE TORONTO. Does this book contain inappropriate content? $18.10. There was a problem loading your book clubs. Do you believe that this item violates a copyright? Free shipping . c. 1960. My rating is only 3 stars because I would not care to read the book again and some of the stories have less impact than others. Unable to add item to List. During World War I, Maugham enlisted with an ambulance unit, but was soon shifted to the Intelligence Department. When war broke out in 1914, Somerset Maugham was dispatched by the British Secret Service to Switzerland under the guise of completing a play. $10.99. "But even if I had been awakened by noisy people I should not dream of complaining. The title you have selected (Ashenden: or, The British Agent) is a post-1923 publication by an author who died more than 50 years ago. Ashenden or, The British agent. Ashenden or the British Agent (Avon T-119) by W. Somerset Maugham. Some of these stories are extremely funny, others heart-breaking. This fascinating book contains the most expert stories of espionage ever written. Ashenden's sweet talking the British German spy into going back to Britain and be summarily shot characterizes the times and the Brits. Much like graham Greene’s spy novels, Maugham’s Ashenden throbs with soul and human vitality. Ashenden Or the British Agent (Kindle Edition) Published March 4th 2019 by Otbebookpublishing Classics To Go, Kindle Edition, 274 pages Author(s): W. Somerset Maugham. Ashenden or The British Agent by William Somerset Maugham Paperback Book The. The title you have selected (Ashenden: or, The British Agent) is a post-1923 publication by an author who died more than 50 years ago. AU $12.64. Like Ian Fleming . During his return with the laundry, Harrington is killed in a street riot. The head of British Intelligence is known only as "R", anticipating James Bond's "M" by a quarter of a century" The Times "Thoughtful spy novels began with Somerset Maugham's Ashenden, featuring a detached hero on a journey to disillusion, a process brought to its apotheosis by le Carre via Greene" Daily Telegraph "A collection of stories so accurate that Churchill ordered the destruction of 14 of them, … I don’t say “novel” since it is really a series of somewhat loosely related stories about a British agent in Switzerland during World War I. Maugham was himself a British agent and he uses his experiences to good effect here. Many of these characters (the 'Hairless Mexican', 'R' the socially insecure spy chief, the suddenly garrulous diplomat, the traitorous journalist Caypor and his wife, the American 'can-do' businessman) will stick in your mind long after you finish the stories. But the book is no less absorbing. Reviewed in the United Kingdom on June 17, 2019. Find many great new & used options and get the best deals for Ashenden or : The British Agent by W Somerset Maugham (1941, Hardcover) at the best online prices at … By Somerset Maugham. Buy a cheap copy of Ashenden: Or The British Agent book by W. Somerset Maugham. This edition was published in 1941 by Doubleday in Garden City, N.Y. The protagonist Ashenden is somewhat modeled on the author, so he is a literary man recruited into the British intelligence service. [3][4][page needed], There have been many full cast adaptations of the stories for BBC Radio.[5]. As the stories were inspired by Maugham's own experiences as a spy (during WW1), I was expecting doses of thrilling drama involving life and death! One cannot be a moral agent and a spy at the same time. William Ashenden is an agent with the British Secret Intelligence Service. Ashenden or The British Agent by William Somerset Maugham Paperback Book The. Free shipping . Such titles are in the public domain in many countries, particularly those outside the US and Europe. It is partly based on the author's experience as a member of British Intelligence in Europe during the First World War. Free shipping . As they try to evacuate, the business man insists on getting back his laundry that had been sent out. Ashenden, brita sekreta agento, estas la heroo de tiuj aventuroj enkadritaj en la etoso de la spionado kaj kontraŭ-spionado. Description: Doubleday. $8.09. Title: Ashenden: or, The British Agent Author: Maugham, W. Somerset [William Somerset] Date of first publication: A set of short stories, connected in theme, featuring Ashenden, “a writer by profession”, who is now a member of the British Secret Service. Ashenden or: The British Agent. Ashenden frequently remarks that he is only a cog in a vast machine, and never knows what is happening in the Big Picture. However, this title most likely ASHENDEN. When one thinks of spy literature, one thinks of Fleming and Bond. Ashenden or, The British agent. First published in 1928 Subjects World War, 1914-1918, Open Library Staff Picks, Fiction, World War, 1914-1918 in fiction, Littérature anglaise, English fiction. Within Maugham's large output, the stories published in Ashenden: The British Agent - are of particular interest. It works up to an interesting situation, has no sense of climax and whittles away its dramatic effects in irrelevance. the title character of Ashenden: Or the British Agent, a collection of stories by W. Somerset Maugham Ashenden (TV series) , a 1991 BBC British spy drama series based on Maugham's stories Disambiguation page providing links to topics that could be referred to by the same search term This fascinating book contains the most expert stories of espionage ever written. Inspired by Maughams's own experiences as a British secret agent in World War I, this series of stories features a fictional spy, John Ashenden, whose dangerous assignments entangle him with traitors, assassins and beautiful but treacherous women. The chapters are collected in later collections under different titles, as below. Publication date 1966 Topics World War, 1914-1918 Publisher [New York : Avon Books] Collection inlibrary; printdisabled; internetarchivebooks; americana Digitizing sponsor Internet Archive Contributor Internet Archive Language English. All a bit different to the world of James Bond ! Published in the mid-1920s and probably the first of the modern type of espionage agent novels, Maugham's 'Ashenden' stories, based on his own experiences of acting as an agent during WW1 and the Russian Revolution, reject the then prevailing heroics of the Bulldog Drummond or John Buchan styles and, instead, anticipate the downbeat and detached minor key realism, pessimism and disillusionment … It will cover some comments of contemporary reviews and the description of two editions. Ashenden Or the British Agent (Classics To Go) eBook: Maugham, Somerset: Amazon.ca: Kindle Store If you’re a fan of spy novels you will want to read this entertaining book. $19.99. Free postage. Ashenden, or the British Agent, first published in 1928, is a series of linked stories relating the adventures of a writer of comic plays who is recruited into Britis While spy stories set during World War 2 and during the Cold War have their charms I find the earlier tales set during the First Word War or in the years leading up to that war much more appealing. This paper aims at comparing two British spy novels, Graham Greene's The Quiet American (1955) and a proportion of Somerset Maugham's Ashenden: or The British Agent (1928). Ashenden or The British Agent (London: Heinemann, 1928) This post will look at W. Somerset Maugham's collection of short stories Ashenden. PREFACE This book is founded on my experiences in the Intelligence Department during the … Ashenden: The British Agent is founded on Maugham's experiences in the English Intelligence Department during World War I, but rearranged for the purposes of fiction. However, it is not a typical spy novel in that it is essentially a collection of short stories (each a particular experience of Ashenden) so there is no build up of suspense or plot that ties together the entire book. It is partly based on the author's experience as a member of British Intelligence in Europe during the First World War. When war broke out in 1914, Somerset Maugham was dispatched by the British Secret Service to Switzerland under the guise of completing a play. It is partly based on the author's experience as a member of British Intelligence in Europe during the First World War. He spends much of the book in neutral Switzerland, where he writes a play while supported by his spy work. Some foxing; near fine in a dust jacket with shallow chipping at the top of the spine; foxing, and some minor we Ashenden, or the British agent by W. Somerset Maugham Missing dust jacket; Readable copy. Ashenden: Or the British Agent is a 1928 collection of loosely linked stories by W. Somerset Maugham. - although both Ian Fleming & John Le Carre have acknowledged their debt to Maugham as the originator of the spy story genre. This book really evokes what one imagines the life of a spy to be like - living unobtrusively in the shadows, & painstakingly putting together clues to gradually enable him to close in on his objective. The incidents described in the stories are modelled on Maugham's experiences as a secret agent, and "the central character, Ashenden, is very much an autobiographical character. Something went wrong. I loved it and found it right up there with Joseph Conrad's "The Secret Agent" and Erskine Childers' "The Riddel of the Sands. Show Details. ASIN: B07PDNB45C Average rating: 4.18 (152 ratings) more details. ASHENDEN OR THE BRITISH AGENT (DJ protected by clear, acid-free mylar cover) by Maugham, W. Somerset Seller Sage Rare & Collectible Books Published c. 1960 Condition Very Good in Very Good+ dust jacket Item Price $ 84.00. item 4 MAUGHAM,W S-ASHENDEN BOOK NEW 4 - MAUGHAM,W S-ASHENDEN BOOK NEW. First edition, first impression of Maugham's collection of interrelated stories about a writer employed as a spy in World War I, drawing from the author's personal experience in the British Secret Intelligence Service. The head of British Intelligence is known only as "R", anticipating James Bond's "M" by a quarter of a century" The Times "Thoughtful spy novels began with Somerset Maugham's Ashenden, featuring a detached hero on a journey to disillusion, a process brought to its apotheosis by le Carre via Greene" Daily Telegraph "A collection of stories so accurate that Churchill ordered the destruction of 14 of them, while Russian intelligence immediately set up a special unit to read British spy novels for clues" --New Statesman item 3 Ashenden, or, The British Agent by William Somerset Maugham 0099289709 The Cheap 3 - Ashenden, or, The British Agent by William Somerset Maugham 0099289709 The Cheap. His work has remained widely anthologied, and is, by any measure of commerce or canon, successful. A thief, languishing in prison for stealing moments, escapes and becomes a chronometric fugitive. Published 1928 Condition First Edition. Does this book contain quality or formatting issues? Ashenden: The British Agent is founded on Maugham's experiences in the English Intelligence Department during World War I, but rearranged for the purposes of fiction. For a period of time after it was first published the book became official required reading for persons entering the secret service. This fascinating book contains the most expert stories of espionage ever written. The ironic denouement is that after the man is captured by the British, he commits suicide before he can be arrested, tried, and executed. Lists containing this Book. That is the draw of the genre and Maugham delivers. Ashenden; or, the British Agent, by W. Somerset Maugham is not the first secret agent novel in English. A minor classic and well worth reading. He does not use a weapon. $21.72 . Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 23, 2019. These promotions will be applied to this item: Some promotions may be combined; others are not eligible to be combined with other offers. If you enjoy the manners and etiquette of a bygone age then you might well enjoy this book. By trade he is an author, a man who has written a novel or two, if inferences can be believed, but who is better known for the plays that he has devised. Ashenden, or, The British Agent. "[1] He is supposed to have modelled Chandra Lal after Virendranath Chattopadhyaya, an Indian Nationalist in Germany during the war. $6.98. Many have the sudden twist (or 'punch' to use his own words) that he was fond of using. A cool, clipped narrator narrating tales of espionage, spliced with sudden, deadly bleakness. Reviewed in the United Kingdom on October 18, 2020. 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 … Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required. $10.00 + $4.00 shipping . Free shipping . It is partly based on the author's experience as a member of British Intelligence in Europe during the First World War. Ashenden: The British Agent By W Somerset Maugham Avon Mystery 1951. Ashenden: Or the British Agent is a 1928 collection of loosely linked stories by W. Somerset Maugham.It is partly based on the author's experience as a member of British Intelligence in … However, there were none. Vintage HB Ashenden or The British Agent W Somerset Maugham … Free shipping . 1928. Ashenden: Or the British Agent estas kolekto de iel ligitaj historioj de 1927 fare de W. Somerset Maugham.Ĝi estas parte bazita sur la propraj espertoj de Maugham kiel membro de la Brita Spionservo en Eŭropo dum la Unua Mondmilito.Sro. At the end of this post, you will find a link to some of the chapters. Ashenden: Or the British Agent is a 1927 collection of loosely linked stories by W. Somerset Maugham. OR THE BRITISH AGENT. Enjoyable with Maugham's sardonic yet humanistic style. 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. Very Good in Very Good+ dust jacket. Multilingual, knowledgeable about many European countries and a celebrated writer, Maugham had the perfect … Prime members enjoy FREE Delivery and exclusive access to music, movies, TV shows, original audio series, and Kindle books. Ashenden is a BBC1's four part TV series based on the 1927 spy novel, Ashenden: Or the British Agent, by W. Somerset Maugham, that aired from 17 November to 8 December 1991, directed by Christopher Morahan, with Alex Jennings in the title role, Joss Ackland as Cumming, Ian Bannen as 'R' and Jason Isaacs as Andrew Lehman. You don't see them coming. Published in the mid-1920s and probably the first of the modern type of espionage agent novels, Maugham's 'Ashenden' stories, based on his own experiences of acting as an agent during WW1 and the Russian Revolution, reject the then prevailing heroics of the Bulldog Drummond or John Buchan styles and, instead, anticipate the downbeat and detached minor key realism, pessimism and disillusionment … Instead, our system considers things like how recent a review is and if the reviewer bought the item on Amazon. At the end of this post, you will find a link to some of the chapters. It is unknown whether they were rewritten slightly from original publication. Synopsis. During WWI, a writer named Ashenden, introduced only by his last name, is enlisted as an agent through threats and promises by "R.", a Colonel with British Intelligence. There's a problem loading this menu right now. When she finds out of his death, the dancer goes to Ashenden and asks to get back the valuable watch she had given to the man whom she has just betrayed. These seemingly simple stories are actually a lot more complex, and the writing a good deal more 'modern', than they appear to be at first sight, they remind us of just how great a popular writer Maugham was in his prime. Some have found similarities with Le Carre but, unlike him, Maugham never sentimentalises, never jargonises, never preaches and never ever uses more words or plot than absolutely necessary. The film stars Madeleine Carroll, Peter Lorre, John Gielgud, and Robert Young. $14.99. This fascinating book contains the most expert stories of espionage ever written. 5 - Ashenden … It also analyzes reviews to verify trustworthiness. He takes pains to describe them fully to the extent that each character is set fast in the reader's imagination. --This text refers to an alternate. This series predates those by forty years and, in my opinion, is actually better. This is a cracking example of how to write engagingly by a master of the genre. Ashenden: The British Agent By W Somerset Maugham Avon Mystery 1951. Near-fine in like jacket. Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. item 5 Ashenden by W. Somerset Maugham (English) Paperback Book Free Shipping! [29] Ashenden is also the name of a character who appears in several of Maugham's short stories. Ashenden: The British Agent is founded on Maugham's experiences in the English Intelligence Department during World War I, but rearranged for the purposes of fiction. The spy walks the razor's edge of furthering the cause of Good without falling into Evil incarnate. It’s highly atmospheric, what little violence there is occurs offstage, and it captures the times well, when everyone smoked, took trains with sleeping cars, and was very polite. --This text refers to an alternate, W. Somerset Maugham (1874-1965) wrote over 100 short stories in a long, multifaceted, successful and controversial career. William Ashenden is an agent with the British Secret Intelligence Service. Please try again. $7.66. Ashenden was one of the first ‘realistic’ spy novels, taking a cynical view of espionage and its human consequences. The protagonist, intelligence agent Ashenden, is cast against type as a placid, nonviolent, but very astute and prudent fellow. by WilliamSomersetMaugham (Author) New Paperback 2000 $11.70. In another, Ashenden must induce an Italian dancer to betray her lover, an anti-British Indian and a German agent, by convincing him to cross the border from neutral Switzerland to see her in allied France, where the Allies can arrest him. Among other enterprises, Britain's European intelligence network attempted to eliminate a number of Indian nationalists in Europe, notably members of the Berlin Committee. (Wikipedia) He spends eleven days on the train from Vladivostok to Petrograd sharing a cabin with Harrington, an American business man who is a constant conversationalist. Unless the reader insists on Bond-style fantasies and derring-do, this small series of not-quite-adventures will be an enjoyable diversion. In one, he accompanies a man called the Hairless Mexican to Italy, where they are to intercept important papers carried by an arriving Greek agent of the Germans. Free shipping . The Hairless Mexican meets the only Greek on the incoming ship, and during a search of the Greek's hotel room, the Hairless Mexican and Ashenden do not find any papers. Ashenden was written by Somerset Maugham and published in 1928. Ashenden: Or the British Agent is a 1928 collection of loosely linked stories by W. Somerset Maugham. $6.98. Britain's insistence that they stamp out any effort for the Indian nationalists to attempt to get the Brits out of India was thwarted for another 25 years of thriving here and other stolen colonies. Publication date 1951 Topics World War, 1914-1918 Publisher Garden City, N.Y., Doubleday, Doran Collection inlibrary; printdisabled; internetarchivebooks; china Digitizing sponsor Internet Archive Contributor Internet Archive Language English. By trade he is an author, a man who has written a novel or two, if inferences can be believed, … Reviewed in the United States on June 24, 2019. FIRST PUBLISHED 1928 REPRINTED 1928 (twice), 1929 (twice), 1931, 1934, 1938, 1948 (twice), 1950, 1951 (twice), 1956, 1961 PRINTED IN GREAT BRITAIN BY THE WINDMILL PRESS LTD KINGSWOOD, SURREY. When he sends Grantly Caypor to certain death as a traitor, the first he knows of his execution is when his dog (who he has left in Switzerland) begins to howl. The protagonist Ashenden is somewhat modeled on the author, so he is a literary man recruited into the British intelligence service. Please try again. Ashenden, or, The British Agent. ©1955 W. Somerset Maugham (P)2012 Audible, Ltd. Ashenden, or: the british agent by Maugham, W. Somerset (William Somerset), 1874-1965. A manifestation of evil is not a moral agent, not immoral but amoral. There was an error retrieving your Wish Lists. A humane and compassionate antidote to two-fisted, square-jawed heroes battling dastardly foreigners. Everything one would expect from Maugham and maybe more. This fascinating book contains the most expert stories of espionage ever written. As they prepare to leave the country, Ashenden decodes a cable which tells him that the intended Greek had never boarded the ship; spots of dried blood on the Hairless Mexican's sleeve mean that he had killed the wrong man. There is a cool precision in his writing, an absence of fussiness, that tells a narrative cleanly and simply, and describes character incisively. $6.12. Ashenden : W Somerset Maugham : 9780405078057 We use cookies to give you the best possible experience. To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number. Joseph Conrad’s The Secret Agent (1907) may hold that honor. Ashenden is valued by his organization as a judge of character more than a man of action. Synopsis. The moral dilemma of the spy universe is exhaustively explored. Donald Gullick, a British agent, was dispatched to assassinate Chattopadhaya while the latter was on his way to Geneva to meet another Indian nationalist, Mahendra Pratap and forward the Kaiser's invitation to Berlin. For a period of time after it was first published the book became official required reading for persons entering the secret service. A few days after they arrive, the revolution breaks out in earnest. shipping: + $3.95 shipping . Top subscription boxes – right to your door, includes free international wireless delivery via, © 1996-2020, Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. "True fiction: The best spies are really quite boring", "Alfred Hitchcock Collectors' Guide: Secret Agent (1936)", https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ashenden:_Or_the_British_Agent&oldid=970756008, Short story collections by W. Somerset Maugham, Wikipedia articles needing page number citations from September 2017, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, "A Domiciliary Visit" & "Miss King" as Miss King, "The Hairless Mexican", "The Dark Woman", "The Greek" as The Hairless Mexican, "A Trip to Paris, "Giulia Lazzari" as Giulia Lazzari, "Behind the Scenes", "His Excellency", as His Excellency, "A Chance Acquaintance", "Love and Russian Literature", "Mr. Harrington's Washing" as Mr. Harrington's Washing, A number of the stories formed the basis of the 1991 four-part, This page was last edited on 2 August 2020, at 05:34. The stories collected in Ashenden are rooted in Maugham's own experiences as an agent, reflecting the ruthlessness and brutality of espionage, its intrigue and treachery, as well as its absurdity. There are also various BBC serialised solo readings: There is also at least one full length audiobook: A character named "William Ashenden" is the narrator of Maugham's 1930 novel Cakes and Ale. Ashenden by W Somerset Maugham, 9780405078057, available at Book Depository with free delivery worldwide. He spends much of the book in neutral Switzerland, where he writes a play while supported by his spy work. Like Ian Fleming . After viewing product detail pages, look here to find an easy way to navigate back to pages you are interested in. Edit. Reviewed in the United Kingdom on August 24, 2014. Maugham certainly had a distinctive style. Ashenden is valued by his organization as a judge of character more than a man of action. For details, please see the Terms & Conditions associated with these promotions. Used Paperback 1991 $8.63. (Wikipedia), The Riddle of the Sands: A Record of Secret Service, The Complete Saki: 144 Collected Novels and Short Stories, Berlin Noir: The First Three Bernie Gunther Novels (A Bernie Gunther Novel), JOHN BUCHAN Ultimate Collection: Spy Classics, Thrillers, Adventure Novels & Short Stories, Including Historical Works and Essays (Illustrated): Scottish ... No Man's Land, Prester John and many more, The Great Novels and Short Stories of Somerset Maugham, Complete Somerset Maugham - Of Human Bondage Moon and Sixpence Trembling of a Leaf Magician Liza of Lambeth Circle Bishop's Apron Hero Explorer Mrs. Craddock ... Orientations Merry-go-round Making of a Sa, "The most persuasive espionage fiction" New York Times "The first spy story written by someone who had been there and done that. Reviewed in the United States on September 12, 2015. We all are not native speakers of English and the level of our English is,maybe, in the middle for a learner of English. Reviewed in the United States on February 13, 2020. Bring your club to Amazon Book Clubs, start a new book club and invite your friends to join, or find a club that’s right for you for free. All the stories have a gentle Edwardian charm and Maugham consistently focuses on the characters in each story. One corner a little bumped, very slight rubbing at the extremities, very near fine in just about fine dustwrapper with some tiny nicks, mostly at the crown. Ashenden, or the British Agent by W Somerset Maugham (1928) This collection of stories drew closely on Maugham’s own experiences as an intelligence officer in Europe during the First World War. This is one of the first spy books. Read this with an eye on the game-changing impact of WWI and appreciate how a man of the world adjusted to the unraveling of everything he took for granted, and how he adapted through the written word. Ashenden or The British Agent by William Somerset Maugham Paperback Book The. Ashenden or, The British agent. Reviewed in the United States on August 6, 2019, Reviewed in the United Kingdom on November 21, 2015. Arthur Conan Doyle’s story, “His Last Bow,” (1917) which has Holmes doing secret agent work and outwitting a German secret agent, also precedes Maugham’s work, though Doyle’s work is a short story. Four-part drama about a writer recruited into espionage work by British intelligence during the First World War. On getting back his laundry that had been sent out in Europe during first. Supported by his organization as a member of British Intelligence service, but very and... 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