Ted Allbeury, Show Me a Hero

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A major espionage novel by an internationally respected writer with an appreciation by Len Deighton. Allbeury wrote before publishers expected authors to tour and sign books; consequently his signature is uncommon. He passed away in 2005 aged 88. He was the author of over 40 espionage novels; many of them such as Show me a Hero involved a compassionate understanding of the ethnic of spying, and a deep knowledge of international affairs.

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Ted Allbeury was exceptional because he was recruited to the secret service in 1939 and served in the army during World War II while he took orders from SIS.  He served in East Africa, Italy and in Nazi Germany as an undercover agent. After the war ended he led a spy network behind the Iron Curtain.  He left the service and became a successful public relations man.  Allbeury’s novels (he published more than forty) are admired for their authenticity and for the moral and ethical dilemmas they often portray.

In his appreciation Len Deighton talks about his admiration for his colleague and old friend, mentioning the fascinating true stories Ted told over the dinner table.

This particular story was based on the life and adventures of a real-life Russian double agent who worked in the USA and helped ease tensions on both sides during the Cold War. Allbeury claimed to have had CIA and probably Russian sources. It was a story that could only be told after the end of the Cold War.  It delves into the psyche and actions of a communist believer through all the turmoil’s of world affairs; one of the outstanding espionage novels of the last twenty years. This is one of 99 numbered and signed copies and was issued in 1992. Allbeury wrote before publishers expected authors to tour and sign books;  consequently his signature is uncommon.  He passed away in 2005 aged 88.

3.50 out of 5

2 reviews for Ted Allbeury, Show Me a Hero

  1. 4 out of 5

    Rating by Len Deighton on April 4, 2012 :

    “Ted’s writing reflects his own eventful life and the tragedies that have scarred him. The way in which his four-year-old daughter was stolen from him, and the lengths he went in his searches for her, is as dramatic as any fiction anyone ever invented. His adventures in the real world of espionage are even more astounding than those he writes. His compassionate treatment of the enemy and the almost inevitable sadness of the finale have become something of a Ted Allbeury trademark. And yet there are always surprises and it’s a bold reader who tries to predict the end of one of Ted’s stories.” Len Deighton

  2. 3 out of 5

    Rating by “Kirkus Review” on April 4, 2012 :

    “Prolific thriller specialist Allbeury … backtracks in a rather nostalgic bit of historic fiction about a loyal communist who spent his life in the US spying for a glorious USSR that never existed. “Based on truth” and covering a cold war that has ended, leaving no doubt about the outcome, this is more memoir than thriller. Motherless little Andrei Aarons follows his father, a Jewish glove-maker and loyal communist, into Parisian exile in the last days of the Romanovs. Spotted as a comer by the Bolsheviks on their way to power, Andrei gets sent to spy school and a lifetime assignment as the Soviet man on the scene in New York, where, with his loyal communist French wife, he sets up as a bookdealer and political spy. Although he’s expected to run the usual nuts-and- bolts espionage and crack the whip over the American communist cells, his speciality is soon seen to be his ability to read the Americans and interpret them for the leaders in Moscow. Admiring the optimistic Americans among whom he lives but steeped from infancy in the purest Communist theory, the keenly analytical Aarons is uniquely able to understand and predict US opinion on and reaction to anything the Muscovites might come up with, including the treaty with Nazi Germany. When WW II ends and Stalin’s expansionist madness increases, Aarons, who has never lost the communist vision, becomes concerned for world peace and – thanks to the machinations of a Wall Street lawyer and a Franco-Russian CIA employee – steps into a role as personal interpreter of the Russians for Truman and then, years later, for Kennedy. He seems to have been largely and frequently responsible for the avoidance of WW III. Allbeury, a Briton, never gets American speech nailed down, but his heart’s in the right place. This is gentle reading for pensioned cold war soldiers”. Kirkus Reviews

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