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Spies of Warsaw by Alan Furst

Spies of Warsaw (2008)

by Alan Furst

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1,0264113,251 (3.83)128
A French aristocrat working as a military attache at the French embassy in Warsaw in 1937 tries to gather information for Poland and France, wondering what move Germany will make next. Romantic sparks fly between the French aristocrat's cousin and a Franco-Polish woman who works as a lawyer for The League of Nations, all against the backdrop of Hitler's gathering war.… (more)



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English (40)  Polish (1)  All languages (41)
Showing 1-5 of 40 (next | show all)
Great read. ( )
  Ed_Schneider | Feb 11, 2020 |
One of Fursts better WWII spy books. I enjoyed the JF Mercier and the way he was fully fleshed out. Everytime I read one of these I wonder about the people who had to live in a time of knowing that war was coming and not knowing how it would end up. It took an all in attitude to defeat the Germans and their mob-like tendrils that spread throughout Europe. ( )
  JBreedlove | Nov 28, 2019 |
1930 Poland Pre WWII
sets the scene —
French/Brits/German/Russian — everyone spying on everyone — like Today

War is coming to Europe. French and German intelligence operatives are locked in a life-and-death struggle on the espionage battlefield. At the French embassy, the new military attache, Colonel Jean-Francois Mercier, a decorated hero of the 1914 war, is drawn into a world of abduction, betrayal, and intrigue in the diplomatic salons and back alleys of Warsaw. At the same time, the handsome aristocrat finds himself in a passionate love affair with a Parisian woman of Polish heritage, a lawyer for the League of Nations.
  christinejoseph | May 21, 2018 |
Much less dark and atmospheric than Furst's other work. I was able to follow the plot much better than usual. Everything you expect from a Night Soldiers series book. Very enjoyable read. ( )
  gpaisley | Jun 18, 2016 |
Review: The Spies of Warsaw by Alan Furst.

This is beautifully crafted story that works well on several levels and like all good fiction it captures the right amount of views on human character, capacity and idiosyncrasy. Furst’s heroes are usually ordinary people who get into spying for very personal reasons but in this book he uses the characters as full or part time spies. His ability to create suspense with believable characters in believable situations is fulfilled to satisfy the reader. The subject of this novel is the combination of the community of military and political spies, logical analysts, and the intelligence gathered in Warsaw around 1939-38.
The focus is on LT. Jean-Francois Mercier, a French military official diplomat and a combat veteran.

In the Autumn of 1937 the German people are bitter about their conquest during the First World War and Adolph Hitler was promising them revenge. As the story opens Lt. Mercier job description is that of chief intelligence officer gathering information on German armament weapon programs and then he moves on to focusing on German tank building, strategy, and deployment. As a spy for the French embassy in Warsaw, Lt. Mercier traveled from Paris, the South of France through Belgrade, Berlin, on to Czechoslovakia and other various places by airplanes, trains, and cars which suited his schedule admirably. Mercier’s daily actions are often distasteful and sometimes seen futile but when it comes to his work he portrays strength, honor, and courage through the perils of his occupation to oblige heroically for his country. As a spy he scrambles for information, trust virtually no one, he pores over casual conversations for possible hidden meanings, and routinely practices deception.

At the end Lt. Mercier becomes involved in spiriting two old Bolshevik Russian-Jewish operatives out of Poland, just ahead of Stalin’s communism militants and he helps an anti-Nazi go underground. The ending was a surprise and I felt Lt. Mercier’s was not appreciated for what he done. I guess being a spy is a catch-22 occupation….I guess you’ll have to read it to see what I mean…but I still enjoyed the book.

The reader gets to meet French and German aristocrats, bartenders, prostitutes, soldiers, workers and more spies many who are memorable minor characters but notable and the reader is also taken through evocative descriptive cities, forest, and the stillness of the country area. Plus, there’s always action and adventure whenever you turn the pages of an espionage novel. Alan Furst doesn’t leave anything unjustified as a writer but I found this book a little less complying to some of his other books but still a good read.
( )
  Juan-banjo | May 31, 2016 |
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In the dying light of an autumn day in 1937, a certain Herr Edvard Uhl a secret agent, descended from a first-class railway carriage in the city of Warsaw.
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