Danube Stations

Overview

The plot of this spy-detective novel turns on a senior figure in British Intelligence, who is being blackmailed by an American spy. The blackmail material, a photograph showing the Intelligence man as a former Nazi officer, is concealed in a travel book called Bannerman's Guide taken by a young British diplomat on a Danube River cruise from Vienna to the Black Sea and back. As several people are carrying other copies of the book, the story turns on who has possession of the key copy, which the American spy hopes ...
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Overview

The plot of this spy-detective novel turns on a senior figure in British Intelligence, who is being blackmailed by an American spy. The blackmail material, a photograph showing the Intelligence man as a former Nazi officer, is concealed in a travel book called Bannerman's Guide taken by a young British diplomat on a Danube River cruise from Vienna to the Black Sea and back. As several people are carrying other copies of the book, the story turns on who has possession of the key copy, which the American spy hopes will reach the hands of KGB agents at some undetermined point during the cruise. Various individuals are also keen to get hold of the key copy. These include an American double agent posing as a collector of folk music, and an agent of Siegfried, an organization that materially assists former Nazis. As the cruise progresses, mysterious incidents connected with the guide book occur at each of the several East European capitals along the Danube. Budapest, Belgrade and Bucharest during the Cold War era form fascinating venues and authentic background based on the author's travel experience. An English detective, Inspector Mason, begins the cruise as a genuine tourist, but gets drawn in to investigating these incidents in considerable depth, and at considerable risk to himself, until he has gathered enough evidence to be able to solve the puzzle in London. Who is carrying the key copy of the Bannerman, the significance of the material it contains and the unmasking of the spy form the intriguing climax to the story. Something of a genuine holiday atmosphere on the boat is maintained throughout, including a romantic interest and a rivalry between Mason and the young diplomat over one of the women passengers.
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Editorial Reviews

Oldham Chronicle UK Book Review
J.D.Mallinson, a former teacher whose previous works have included poetry, travel writing, serial fiction and a travel memoir, has put some of his travel knowledge into his first novel, DANUBE STATIONS, an evocative spy yarn set on a river cruiser, the Orsova, in the Communist era. The book accurately draws down particular details of time and place and has a healthy period feel for its subject. It has an original plot unfolding in the course of a cruise calling at Budapest, Belgrade and Bucharest, with period atmosphere, a good selection of interesting characters and a surprise ending.

It will appeal to anyone who enjoys detective fiction or European travel. Travel and work have taken this author all over the world, including teaching positions in Finland and Switzerland, where he met his wife Catharine, a native of Oklahoma. They both taught school in England for many years before moving to New Hampshire. Though this is his first novel, his career as a poet goes back to 1980 and his poems have appeared in many journals and anthologies.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781413487527
  • Publisher: Xlibris Corporation
  • Publication date: 12/28/2005
  • Pages: 136
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 0.32 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 24, 2008

    So-so mystery

    A rather elementary mystery. A code is being passed using a tour guidebook that takes place primarily on a river cruise. The English speaking people hang together reminiscent of Agatha Christie, but not as interesting.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2006

    Like going on vacation!

    I loved this very original detective story set aboard a Danube cruise. Like going on vacation !

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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