The Whitehall Mandarin

Edward Wilson. Arcadia (Dufour, dist.), $29.95 (372p) ISBN 978-1-909807-53-2
Wilson’s audacious premise, grounded in historical fact, separates his third thriller featuring MI6 intelligence operative William Catesby (after 2012’s The Midnight Swimmer) from many similar explorations of the cold war’s shadow side. In March 1957, Catesby has Jeffers Cauldwell, an American cultural attaché assigned to London, under surveillance, because Cauldwell may be spying for the Russians. Cauldwell specializes in obtaining compromising photos of British government officials, which proves relatively easy in the “sexual circus” of the time. Wilson goes on to spin an engrossing spy story that concludes in 1969, saving for the end the revelation of an ingenious plan to counter the Soviets. Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon all condoned a secret program that many Americans would have considered treasonous. Fans of twisted plots with the possibility of double or even triple bluffs will find this a nice substitute for Len Deighton, who made even secondary characters memorable. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/31/2014
Release date: 04/01/2014
Genre: Fiction
Ebook - 222 pages - 978-1-909807-71-6
Paperback - 384 pages - 978-1-910050-54-5
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