This is collection of short stories which revolve around the spy and that type of espionage. Interestingly Otto Penzler claims in the introduction that this is the first collection of this type of short story. I'm not sure that's true but then again I can't think off the top of my head of another collection so maybe he's right. There are some big name authors of novels contributing to this collection, do they all write as good a short story as they do a novel? Some do, some don't. Overall I think the collection passes the time but there's not really any masterpieces you'll be thinking about years or even weeks after you've read them. The format of this collection is a bit weird too, there's a contents page which lists the stories and their page numbers, but each author isn't named. Nor is there a copyright page doing this either. Initially I wondered if this was one of those guess who wrote what story collections, but the authors are named on the first page of each story.
Even though each story has never before been published. Depending on when you are reading this review they may well have been published in something you have read. So if you're just a fan of one or two authors and are wondering what story in here is theirs, the stories and their authors inside are The End of the String - Charles McCarry Section 7 (A) (Operational)- Lee Child Destiny City - James Grady Neighbors - Joseph Finder East of Suez, West of Charing Cross Road - John Lawton Father's Day - John Weisman Casey at the Bat - Stephen Hunter Max is Calling - Gayle Lynds The Interrogator - David Morrell Sleeping With My Assasin - Andrew Klavan The Hamburg Redemption - Robert Wilson The Courier - Dan Fesperman Hedged In - Stella Rimington You Know What's Going On - Olen Steinhauer
The best stories in here in my opinion are Finder's Neighbors about an Arabaian man who moves in next door to a racist. The racist is determined to prove the Arab's background is not what he says so he can expose him which embarrasses his wife. But is he right? The Interrogator by Morrell is also an interesting look into the mind of a torturer who thinks he's better and more intelligent than the average torturer and that his results are more accurate than theirs where the victim will just tell what they think the torturers want to know to make them stop. However in his explanations of why his way is better he starts to over think some things.
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