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A Spy Named Orphan: The Enigma of Donald Maclean
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Roland Philipps
A Spy Named Orphan: The Enigma of Donald Maclean by Roland Philipps at Abbey's Bookshop,

A Spy Named Orphan: The Enigma of Donald Maclean

Roland Philipps



Biography: historical, political & military;
The Cold War;
Espionage & secret services


352 pages

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Donald Maclean was a star diplomat, an establishment insider and a keeper of some of the West's greatest secrets. He was also a Russian spy...

Codenamed 'Orphan' by his Russian recruiter, Maclean was Britain's most gifted traitor. But as he leaked huge amounts of top-secret intelligence, an international code-breaking operation was rapidly closing in on him. Moments before he was unmasked, Maclean escaped to Moscow.

Drawing on a wealth of previously classified material, A Spy Named Orphan now tells this story for the first time in full, revealing the character and devastating impact of perhaps the most dangerous Soviet agent of the twentieth century.

'Superb' William Boyd 'Fascinating... An exceptional story of espionage and betrayal, thrillingly told' Philippe Sands 'A cracking story... Impressively researched' Sunday Times 'Philipps makes the story and the slow uncovering of Maclean's treachery a gripping narrative' Alan Bennett

By:   Roland Philipps
Imprint:   Vintage
Country of Publication:   United Kingdom
Dimensions:   Height: 198mm,  Width: 129mm,  Spine: 28mm
Weight:   343g
ISBN:   9781784703578
ISBN 10:   1784703575
Pages:   352
Publication Date:   February 2019
Audience:   General/trade ,  ELT Advanced
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active

Roland Philipps went into publishing on graduating from Cambridge and until recently was Publisher of John Murray. He has edited some leading novelists, politicians, historians, travellers and biographers. A Spy Named Orphan, his first book, arises from lifelong connections to Donald Maclean and his story.

Brilliantly fluent...fascinating...[Philipps] writes so cleanly, and at such a clip, handling the big scenes with aplomb...This biography first grips and then lingers long in the mind. It is a page-turner of the most empathetic kind. -- Rachel Cooke * Guardian * Superb...full of contemporary relevance... Philipps relates the complex narrative of Maclean's treason...with tremendous aplomb, limpidity and acuity -- WILLIAM BOYD * New Statesman * With A Spy Named Orphan, the last piece of this bizarre jigsaw falls into place. The outline story is familiar, but the amount of new detail here - on Maclean's personal, professional, and secret lives - exceeds all expectations. Roland Philipps has managed to make the new material come alive by relating it intimately to its historical context, of which he has a deep and sympathetic understanding. -- Sebastian Faulks, author of BIRDSONG The definitive account of the life of a gifted traitor... Impressive... By drawing on a wealth of previously classified material, Philipps weaves a gripping tale of misplaced loyalty, intrigue and betrayal that is unlikely to be bettered -- Dominic Midgley * Daily Express * Fascinating and page-turning. An exceptional story of espionage and betrayal, thrillingly told. I devoured it. -- Philippe Sands, winner of the Baillie Gifford Prize for EAST WEST STREET

  • Short-listed for Slightly Foxed Best First Biography Prize 2019 (UK)
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