BOOKS

The Unfortunate Englishman

John Lawton

RRP: £8.99

Published by Grove Press

ISBN: 9781611855449

RRP: £14.99

Published by Grove Press

ISBN: 9781611856187

RRP: £4.99

Published by Grove Press

ISBN: 9781611859645

A thrilling portrait of 1960s Berlin and Krushchev’s Moscow, centring around the exchange of two spies – a Russian working for the KGB, and an unfortunate Englishman.

Having shot someone in the chaos of 1963 Berlin, Wilderness finds himself locked up with little chance of escape. But an official pardon through his father-in-law Burne-Jones, a senior agent at MI6, means he is free to go – although forever in Burne-Jones’s service.

When the Russians started building the Berlin wall in 1961, two ‘Unfortunate Englishmen’ were trapped on opposite sides. Geoffrey Masefield in the Lubyanka, and Bernard Alleyn (alias KGB Captain Leonid Liubimov) in Wormwood Scrubs.

In 1965 there is a new plan. To exchange the prisoners, a swap upon Berlin’s bridge of spies. But, as ever, Joe has something on the side, just to make it interesting, just to make it profitable…

REVIEWS

Even reviewers have their favourites and John Lawton is one of mine. Nobody is better at using historical facts as the framework of a really good story... The crowded, complication story is enriched by glimpses of Kennedy and Krushchev, by pinpoint-precise period detail and by interesting, credible characters.
Literary Review

[A] cleverly misleading title, one of the many twists in John Lawton's constantly entertaining Cold War saga... The spying detail is well mixed with humour.
The Times

A complex and beautifully detailed tale, a full-blooded cold-war spy thriller
Irish Times

All these adventures arrive gift-wrapped in writing variously rich, inventive, surprising, informed, bawdy, cynical, heartbreaking and hilarious. However much you know about postwar Berlin, Lawton will take you deeper into its people, conflicts and courage... spy fiction at its best.
Washington Post

Lawton's gift for memorable atmosphere and characters, intelligent plotting and wry prose put him solidly at the top of anyone's A-list of contemporary spy novelists.
Seattle Times

Both books are meticulously researched, tautly plotted, historical thrillers in the moUld of World War II and Cold War fiction by novelists like Alan Furst, Philip Kerr, Eric Ambler, David Downing and Joseph Kanan.
Wall Street Journal on THE UNFORTUNATE ENGLISHMAN and THEN WE TAKE BERLIN

Intricate plotting, colourful characters, and a brilliant prose style put Lawton in the front rank of historical thriller writers.
Publishers Weekly

A sublimely elegant historical novelist as addictive as crack but overlooked by too many readers for too long.
Daily Telegraph on A LILY OF THE FIELD

Lawton's up there with Philip Kerr and Alan Furst. Yes, he's that good.
The Sun on THEN WE TAKE BERLIN

While Lawton's previous novels were distinguished by their precise and elegant prose, Then We Take Berlin offers, courtesy of its Cockney protagonist, a cruder but equally effective vernacular style underpinned by mordant black humour.
Irish Times on THEN WE TAKE BERLIN

Lawton builds a wonderfully convincing picture...writing with remarkable authority... as usual with Lawton's books, it's rather more than the sum of its parts.
Spectator on THEN WE TAKE BERLIN