Waiting for Orders

Waiting for Orders

by Eric Ambler
     
 

Waiting for Orders collects nine short stories that span the sixty-year career of master spy novelist Eric Ambler. The stories include thrilling portrayals of wartime Europe in “The Army of the Shadows” (1939); six cases featuring a refugee Czech detective, Dr. Czissar (1940); “The Blood Bargain” (1972), a Central American political

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Overview

Waiting for Orders collects nine short stories that span the sixty-year career of master spy novelist Eric Ambler. The stories include thrilling portrayals of wartime Europe in “The Army of the Shadows” (1939); six cases featuring a refugee Czech detective, Dr. Czissar (1940); “The Blood Bargain” (1972), a Central American political thriller; and “The One Who Did for Blagden Cole” (1992), a detective story of sorts about the death of a painter. In four accompanying essays, Ambler shares intriguing anecdotes from  different phases of his career, offering unique insight into his writing process. This intriguing and varied collection is a perfect introduction to the life and writing of one of the twentieth century’s greatest thriller writers.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Most of these eight mildly diverting short stories disinterred from the work of British suspense master Ambler were written in 1939-1940 as Ambler, already a successful novelist ( A Coffin for Dimitrios ), awaited his call to military duty. Six ingenious detective short-shorts star a heel-clicking, umbrella-toting refugee (``Dr. Jan Czissar. Late Prague police. At your service'') who infuriates the outclassed Mercer of Scotland Yard by being insufferably and invariably correct. In a preface, Ambler relates that the ideas for these tales came from a standard two-volume work on forensic medicine. Two suspense stories, however, beg for further development. In ``The Army of the Shadows'' an English surgeon driving in the Swiss Alps becomes stranded during a snow storm and then entangled in the intrigues of prewar anti-Nazis. Here Ambler expressed the soon-to-be-unpopular view that the enemy was not the German people but the Nazi tyranny. In ``The Blood Bargain,'' salvaged from a failed novel, a corrupt Latin American tyrant uses subtle psychological tactics to gain his release from insurgents, then finds exile extremely dangerous. (Feb.)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307950123
Publisher:
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Publication date:
12/11/2012
Series:
Vintage Crime/Black Lizard
Sold by:
Random House
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
1,248,916
File size:
2 MB

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