Greenmantle by John Buchan
The second installment in the electrifying adventures of Richard Hannay, Britain’s greatest secret agent
Major Richard Hannay, hero of The Thirty-Nine Steps, is recovering from wounds sustained in the bloody Battle of Loos when his old friend Sir Walter Bullivant summons him to the Foreign Office. Hoping for a promotion, Hannay is asked instead to investigate rumors that a “star rising in the West” is about to bring the entirety of the Muslim world under the Kaiser’s control. Hannay enlists the help of a polyglot British soldier and a dyspeptic American spy to go undercover first in Germany and then in Constantinople, where the glamorous and enigmatic Hilda von Einem is behind the conspiracy. In a stunning climax set during the pivotal clash between Russian and Ottoman forces over the Turkish city of Erzerum, Hannay and his cohorts risk everything to ensure that England and her allies will live to fight another day.
With its skillful blend of political insight and heart-stopping action, Greenmantle was a huge step forward in the development of the modern espionage novel. It was also, and still very much is, an irresistible thrill ride from first page to last.
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"Between Kipling and Fleming stands John Buchan, the father of the modern spy thriller." - Christopher Hitchens
"The best of Buchan's ‘shockers' . . . The plotting is complex, fast and fantastical, yet draws directly from the real events of the middle years of the first world war." - The Guardian
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