This highly original novel charting the rise of the intelligence services in pre-war Eastern Europe first established Alan Furst's remarkable reputation. Now it is to be reissued in B-format, in a new cover style, alongside his new paperback, The World at Night. In Bulgaria in 1934 nineteen-year-old Khristo Stoianev sees his brother kicked to ...
This highly original novel charting the rise of the intelligence services in pre-war Eastern Europe first established Alan Furst's remarkable reputation. Now it is to be reissued in B-format, in a new cover style, alongside his new paperback, The World at Night. In Bulgaria in 1934 nineteen-year-old Khristo Stoianev sees his brother kicked to death by a gang of strutting thugs. Realising the growing menace of Fascism, he takes a risk on the promise of Communism and flees to Moscow, where he is trained as an agent of the NKVD, precursor of the KGB, and forms a close bond with a group of fellow students. His first mission is to Catalonia, where he is soon caught up in the bloody horrors of the Spanish Civil War. Then he learns he is to be the victim of one of Stalin's purges, and is forced to flee once again, this time to Paris!
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This very well written and researched novel spans the turbulent years 1934-1945, Europe to the Soviet Union. The cast of characters are diverse and realistic (don't forget these folks when they are no longer mentioned) with the depths of human nature exposed at every turn. The action is mesmerizing and the politics - well, has anything really changed?
Mar 17, 2011
Alan Furst is the best mystery/spy novel writer if his generation. Nobody knows better the inter war intrigues of Soviet and Nazi agents.
The Night Soldier is a prime example of this genre.
Publishers Weekly, 1989-12-15 The father of a boy murdered by fascists in a small town in Bulgaria in 1934 embraces Communism and becomes an agent for the Soviets, who assign him to Catalonia during the Spanish Civil War. ``Furst shows a remarkable talent in his fifth novel, integrating details about the cultures of Spain, France and Eastern Europe with a fascinating story,'' PW declared . (Feb.)
Publishers Weekly, 1987-12-04 When a small-town Bulgarian landlord, a grocer and their cohorts, decked out in foolish uniforms and caps with goose feathers, hear a village teenager ridicule their march, they do what petty fasciststaking their cue from the no-longer laughable Nazisdid best: they gang up on the boy and kill him. Set in 1934, this evocative, moving novel concerns the travails of the boy's brother, Khristo Stoianev. Khristo, realizing the menace of fascism, takes a risk on the promise of communism and flies east to Moscow, where he becomes a promising agent of the NKVD, predecessor of the KGB. His superiors assign him to Catalonia during the Spanish Civil War and Khristo begins to experience the relentlessly cruel, cataclysmic decades of World War II and its aftermath. Furst shows a remarkable talent in his fifth novel, integrating details about the cultures of Spain, France and Eastern Europe with a fascinating story of the constantly changing, constantly unpredictable events of that world at war. Moreover, he is never so carried away by his character's adventures that he fails to accurately depict the true scale of a man's tragic life, a life like that of many who suffered during those terrible years. (January 25) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
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