My regular posts have been a bit more sporadic of late as I’ve been working on a couple of special projects.
First was hosting a two part podcast panel on Spybrary looking at Adam Hall’s famous spy creation – Quiller. This resulted in a fair bit of research as I reread a bunch of the books, contacted authors who had been influenced by his writing and, with the help of the fine special collection librarians at Arizona State University, found out that Hall had initially written one of the later novels in the third person.
Following that I had the pleasure of interviewing Henry Hemming about his latest book, Agents of Influence. The book looks at how Britain used propaganda to try and raise the interest of an indifferent US public for joining the war. As he’s done in his earlier books, Hemming looks at some of the eccentric personalities involved in the drive to change American public opinion. Bill Stevenson was the name of the man MI6 seemingly pulled out of a hat for all the experience he had with an operation of this scale. On the opposite side was the German embassy which used some truly ingenious methods of getting their message to the American people and Charles Lindbergh, the celebrated aviator, who used his fame to spread an isolationist and anti-semitic message. We talked about all of that plus a bit about his previous book, Agent M, which looked at the eccentric MI5 officer Maxwell Knight.
If you haven’t already listened, I hope you’ll check them out.