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Spy Story (Secret File #6)

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  385 ratings  ·  13 reviews
An attempted murder, the defection of a highly placed KGB official, and an explosive nuclear submarine chase beneath the Arctic Ocean seem to have little connection to one another. But they are the sparks that propel Pat Armstrong — also known as Harry Palmer — into the heart of a brutal East-West power play.
And when Armstrong returns to his own apartment — where someone
Mass Market Paperback, 291 pages
Published September 1st 1991 by HarperPrism (first published 1974)
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Luis Felipe
-Review of Spy Story by Len Deighton-

Spy Story by Len Deighton is one of the many spy novels written by this author and it portrays to us how the espionage divisions were used in Great Britain after World War II and before the Cold War during the Soviet Union attack threats. The protagonist of the story is a spy, that uses the pseudonym of Pat Armstrong and the novels plot is about various events that occur in the spy world and in Armstrong’s life after he returns from a submarine mission. All t
Pat Armstrong, the naval war games center administrator, marks the return of Deighton's original unnamed spy from "The Ipcress File" through "Horse Under Water." It was a welcome return in 174, and it still is. Having come back from a submarine mission to probe Russia's northern coastal defenses and too gain information to hone the accuracy of the war games study center's scenarios, "Armstrong" finds that his life has been invaded or co-opted in his absence.. Always being one to push back, the f ...more
Simon Mcleish
Originally published on my blog here in May 2004.

After a sequence of novels which are each in some way different from everything else he had written, Spy Story is Len Deighton's return to basics. It could almost be another sequel to The Ipcress File - it even shares several characters. (It is actually listed on Fantastic Fiction as one of the Harry Palmer novels, but the narrator is named, and isn't Palmer.)

Pat Armstrong, the narrator, works in wargaming, using the latest intelligence about Sovi
What is it with these British spy novelists? Modern spy stories, specifically of the American vein, are typically testosterone-brimming, gadget-wanking Cretin-A-Thons in which all the work of spying is managed by a few rubber noses, a silicon-based transmitter, a few ounces of plasticine explosives, and some rock-hard abs. While British historian, Len Deighton doesn’t provide readers with the kind of from-the-inside access that John le Carré brings to his work, he brings to the table the histori ...more
Gabriel Smith
A return to form after the disappointing 'An Expensive Place To Die'. The main character, 'Pat' is obviously the same man as the unnamed hero of 'The IPCRESS file' - a little older but not necessarily wiser.

The two main settings, a war games study centre and a nuclear sub are both interesting and I found myself wishing that more time was spent on the war game as it seemed a fascinating subject.
Ronald Wilcox
Usually really enjoy this author's books but just could not get into this one very much. Just read it today while flying home from a meeting in DC and cannot really say what the book was about .... that forgettable. Writing itself was good, just not memorable at all.
I think most agree that Pat Armstrong in this book is the same man as the unnamed agent in Deightons earlier series. Now a little older and living a more sedentary life he's dragged back into a more active role by his old boss Dawlish. Deighton on form again.
Set deep in the Cold War, and unusually, you actually don't get much of the protagonist's internal monologue, so his activities are a little opaque at times. Deliciously paranoid though, will read earlier works next.
Gerold Whittaker
I'm not saying this is not a good book: it simply is not my kind of book and it juswt never seemed to get off the ground. As a result I put it down before I reached the halfway point....
I've somehow managed to avoid reading any Len Deighton until now. A pretty good book.
Clive Warner
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
cracking old school cold war thriller.
Fantasically written. A good thriller.
Tracy added it
Jan 11, 2015
Jean Gourd
Jean Gourd marked it as to-read
Jan 09, 2015
William marked it as to-read
Jan 03, 2015
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Deighton was born in Marylebone, London, in 1929. His father was a chauffeur and mechanic, and his mother was a part-time cook.After leaving school, Deighton worked as a railway clerk before performing his National Service, which he spent as a photographer for the Royal Air Force's Special Investigation Branch. After discharge from the RAF, he studied at St Martin's School of Art in London in 1949 ...more
More about Len Deighton...

Other Books in the Series

Secret File (7 books)
  • The Ipcress File (Secret File, #1)
  • Horse Under Water
  • Funeral in Berlin
  • Billion Dollar Brain
  • An Expensive Place to Die
  • Twinkle, Twinkle Little Spy
The Ipcress File (Secret File, #1) Berlin Game (Bernard Samson, #1) Mexico Set (Bernard Samson, #2) London Match (Bernard Samson, #3) Funeral in Berlin

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