From a random review:

Get new posts by email:

Note: As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

Navigate the site:
Click here for a complete list of books reviewed or select below:
Search the site:
The ratings:
5 stars  excellent
4 stars  very good
3 stars  good
2 stars  fair
1 stars  poor

Blog stats:

About the blogger:
Debra Hamel is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.


Books by Debra Hamel:

THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


paperback | Kindle | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


paperback | hardcover (US)
paperback | hardcover (UK)

SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)

IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


Kindle | paperback (US)
Kindle | paperback (UK)

PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


Kindle (US) | Kindle (UK)





Book-blog.com by Debra Hamel is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Noncommercial - No Derivative Works 3.0 License.



Cumming, Charles: A Spy By Nature

  Amazon  

4 stars

Twenty-something Alec Milius is smart and heart-broken and headed nowhere in particular when a chance encounter leads him to interview with MI6. He winds up becoming an industrial spy, a life to which he's particularly suited--see the book's title--because he is naturally deceitful: he tends to fall into lying even when there's no particular reason to do so. The trait is handy in the spy business, if deadly for personal relationships. Admirably, the author takes his time with the story. The first 25% of the book details Alec's interviews with MI6--not a lot going on and yet it manages to be gripping. The narrative slows in the middle, when Alec is playing a cat-and-mouse game with an American couple: lots of talk as he attempts to manipulate them, and vice versa, and it can be tedious. Still, the detailed accounts of conversations, related by Alec in the first person, contribute to the book feeling very realistic and intimate. My biggest complaint about the novel is that Cumming's Americans are forever dropping their G's: they're doin' things and goin' places. I assume this was an attempt to differentiate them as Americans, but it isn't accurate and it was like nails on a chalkboard every time I read it. I'm glad to see that Alec Milius returns in Cumming's 2008 novel The Spanish Game. I just hope there aren't too many Americans in it!

Comments

Post a comment

Comments are moderated, and will not appear on this weblog until the author has approved them.

If you have a TypeKey or TypePad account, please Sign In