The Storm Birds: Soviet Postwar Defectors

Gordon Brook-Shepherd, Author Grove/Atlantic $22.95 (384p) ISBN 978-1-55584-122-5
Based on research that includes interviews with several defectors, Brook-Shepherd tells the sagas of the 12 most prominent Soviet diplomatic and military-intelligence officers who have sought asylum in the West since 1945. Family background, character and motivation for defection are the author's primary interests. Yuri Rastvorov, for example, regarded defection as a way to fulfill his hedonistic dreams (as well as escape his detested wife); Oleg Penkovsky acted from an ambition to become the greatest spy in history. Brook-Shepherd ( The Storm Petrels ) argues convincingly that Penkovsky, suspected by experts in the West of being a KGB ``stool pigeon,'' was a genuine defector. Gracefully written and distinguished by its clarity of thought, the book speculates little and documents much. (Aug.)
Reviewed on: 08/01/1989
Release date: 08/01/1989
Hardcover - 274 pages - 978-0-8050-1391-7
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