Eric Ambler

Martin Spellman mspellman at
Mon Aug 19 08:03:37 MDT 2002

	It is good that Eric Ambler's books are being republished as they have
always been in demand. I am unaware that he was affiliated to any group but
was definitely a thirties anti-fascist. This made him a so-called 'premature
anti-fascist' by establishment standards. This made them equivalent or at
least as bad as communists. Charlie Chaplin was another such.

	Cannot understand how Edward Rothstein puts John Le Carre on the 'spy-novel
left' -- he is a very establishment character. I wouldn't put Robert Ludlum
on the right either -- he was a Marine in WW2 and there is a natural
anti-nazi theme in his books. I suppose most people would be to the left of
Tom Clancy. John Buchan was anti-semitic as were a number of the 1930s crime
and spy authors. The whole genre is prone to conservative and reactionary
types: restoration of the status quo, defence of private property, etc.

	Erskine Childers is very interesting. He was Clerk to the House of
Commons -- one of those who sit in wig and gown at the Speaker's table, keep
the minutes and advise the Speaker. But he was a republican and was a member
of the Sinn Fein delegation, together with Arthur Griffith and Martin
Collins, that negotiated with Lloyd George. Collins kept him out of things.
Childers was later shot by the Irish Free State government but his son
became Irish President some years later.

These are Ambler's books:

--The Mask of Dimitrios,
--The Dark Frontier,
--Uncommon Danger,
--Epitaph for a Spy,
--Cause for Alarm,
--The Intrusions of Dr. Czissar,
--Journey into Fear,
--The Schirmer Inheritance,
--The Night-Comers,
--Passage of Arms, 1958. Gold Dagger
--The Light of Day, 1962. Edgar
--A Kind of Anger,
--Dirty Story, 1967. Best British Award of the CWA.
--The Intercom Conspiracy, (aka 'The Quiet Conspiracy')
--The Levanter, 1971. Gold Dagger
--Doctor Frigo,
--Send No More Flowers,

Ambler died in 1998, aged 89

Martin Spellman

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