THE SIXTH DIRECTORATE by Joseph Hone

THE SIXTH DIRECTORATE

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A somewhat disappointing follow-up to The Private Sector (1972) even if it takes place in the same nowhere country of deep covers and open betrayals; even if it retrieves Philip Marlow from the earlier book and the jail where he was to spend many years; even if Hone can write rings around most of his competitors while following the dots--here they're too obviously contiguous while by the close you've been altogether bemused and confused by the interchangeability of everyone around. You'll start wondering from the time when the KGB speculates about a dissident Sixth Directorate operating in the U.S. and about one George Graham, their ""deep cover illegal"" who's been kept clean under wraps for some years. At this point the British send Marlow to replace Graham and he will not only have to fill his shoes but perhaps take them off in the bed of Graham's former mistress, Helen, married to a man named Jackson who pimps for her while watching her jealously. Then there's Helen--did she love Graham? does she love Marlow? will she betray both of them as well as her husband who is taken care of so that Marlow can be substituted again (again?) for the latter? Be all that as it may, Hone's book is an inductive, quality proposition in the spate of spy stories.

Pub Date: Aug. 1st, 1975
Publisher: Dutton