Jack of Spies

by David Downing

Action / Adventure / Spy / Espionage eBooks of the Month Historical Fiction Thriller and Suspense

LoveReading View on Jack of Spies

This begins a World War I spy series where, as a luxury car salesman, Jack McColl has perfect cover for travelling the world and so is ideally placed for spying in China, India, Ireland and no doubt plenty of other places as the series develops.  The start is a bit slow.  Jack has a relationship with a girl with Irish connections which was supposed to be a passing fling but develops and is in danger of threatening his double life.  As I’ve said, a slow start but start you should for Downing is a fine author who will no doubt deliver some great books about Jack McColl for he has already written  magnificent World War II spy books, The Station series, starring John Russell.


This is the first in a new series from this accomplished writer, perfect for fans of Wilbur Smith or Frederick Forsyth.

Sarah Broadhurst

Jack of Spies Synopsis

Jack McColl is a globe-trotting salesman for a luxury car firm. He is also a part-time spy for the fledgling Secret Service on the eve of the First World War, doing London's bidding wherever internal or external enemies threaten the security of the British Empire. As 1913 ends he is in China, checking out the German naval base at Tsingtao between automobile demonstrations in Peking and Shanghai. Caitlin Hanley is a young Irish-American journalist with the sort of views that most British men would find dangerously advanced. McColl is no exception, but once captivated he finds himself unwilling to give her up -- even when Caitlin's radical politics and family connections threaten to compromise his undeclared career as a spy. Then the pair become involved in a plot that threatens the Empire in its hour of greatest need . . .

Jack of Spies Press Reviews

Praise for David Downing:


'In the elite company of literary spy masters Alan Furst and Philip Kerr'
Washington Post

 'Remarkable ... Downing is one of the brightest lights in the shadowy world of historical spy fiction' Birmingham Post

'A superb sequence of spy novels comes to an end . . . Like its predecessors, Masaryk Station offers tight, intelligent plots full of moral ambiguities and a cast of shadowy characters for whom deception is as natural as breathing. The clammy atmosphere of espionage is wonderfully conveyed.' Marcel Berlins in The Times

'The author not only creates intrigue but, over the course of six engrossing novels chronicles the shifting conscience of his main character. His descriptions ring true, not only in moments of crisis and action but of the quotidian days between: prewar negotiations, threats and reprieves, false alarms, dashed hopes, everyday pleasures, encroaching dread . . . Almost epic in scope, Downing's "Station" cycle creates a fictional universe rich with a historian's expertise but rendered with literary style and heart.' Wall Street Journal on the Station series

'Excellent ... Downing's strength is his fleshing out of the tense and often dangerous nature of everyday life in a totalitarian state' The Times

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9781908699718
Publication date: 16/06/2014
Publisher: Old Street Publishing
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781908699299
Publication date: 03/09/2013
Publisher: Old Street Publishing
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781908699718
Publication date: 16th June 2014
Author: David Downing
Publisher: Old Street Publishing
Format: Paperback
Genres: Action Adventure / Spy, eBook Favourites, Historical Fiction, Thriller / Suspense,
Categories: Espionage & spy thriller, First World War fiction,

About David Downing

David Downing is the author of a political thriller, two alternative histories and a number of books on military and political history and other subjects as diverse as Neil Young and Russian Football.   Author photo © George Lewton

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