In this fascinating and uniquely colorful autobiography, a twentieth-century master of suspense fiction candidly examines his extraordinary life, times, and art One of the twentieth century's most respected writers of adventure and espionage thrillers, Geoffrey Household penned more than twenty novels and short story collections in a career that spanned more than fifty years--and lived a life as eventful and surprising as his acclaimed, pulse-pounding fiction. In Against the Wind, the author whom the New York Times credits with having "helped to develop the suspense story into an art form" shares his remarkable personal history with candor and wit, while exploring the creative process and his roles as a husband, father, bestselling popular artist, and citizen of his uniquely eventful time. From his years as a student at the University of Oxford to his early career in the cutthroat world of international business and finance to his patriotic service with British intelligence during World War II, with perilous postings in Greece, Romania, and the Middle East that later informed his thrilling fiction, Household evocatively recalls a peripatetic life lived purposefully and often dangerously in some of the most colorful and fascinating regions of the globe.
Ever since the publication of ROGUE MALE, Geoffrey Household has been known in the English-reading world for his audacious and unorthodox tales of adventure. Now, in his autobiography, AGAINST THE WIND, he tells us the story of his own life, sharing with us the background and the experiences from which he emerged as a writer. A gradaute from Oxford he then worked as an apprentice-clerk in the Ottoman Bank, as a banana salesman in Spain, and he served in British Intelligence during World War II in Romania, Greece and the Middle East. In the final chapters he speaks of the writer's craft and of his personal aspirations.
In war-torn Lebanon, a beautiful French woman fights a war of spy versus spy There is no privacy in Beirut. In the hotel lobbies and high-class bars of this beautiful Eastern capital, intelligencers of every stripe hide in plain sight: British spies and Nazi moles, Free French operatives and the lackeys of Vichy France. Stalin has his men here, as do the Zionists who would turn British Palestine into a haven for the Jewish people. There are agents of every race, gender, and nationality--and they are all at one another's throats. Armande Herne is not one of them--but she will be soon enough. A French woman raised in England, Armande came to Beirut after her husband joined the navy. When the French army hands the city over to the British, an arms deal draws Armande into the shadowy side of this city of intrigue, taking her on a desert adventure that will change the war--or leave her dead in the sand.
Far in the future, a group of dissidents fight to rebuild Britain It has been seven hundred years since the United Kingdom was destroyed. In the aftermath of a global cataclysm, the peoples of Europe banded together under a single flag, but the English refused to go along. Their resistance was rewarded with a genocide that wiped out half the population. The survivors resettled in North Africa, and Britain was declared uninhabitable. To celebrate the year 3000, the island is repopulated, to be ruled according to Federation law. But there are those in the underground determined to begin old battles anew. A barbarian king rides in the forests, drinking beer and promising to resist the Federation at all costs. In the new capital, a student takes a shot at the High Commissioner, nearly killing him with an ancient weapon known as a rifle. After seven centuries of silence, the British are ready to rise again.
Stories of intrigue and adventure at the edge of civilization It has been nine years since Solomon Carver went up the Amazon. He left an anthropologist, but he has remade himself as a god. Rumors float down the river that Carver has taken two hundred wives and left the morality of Christendom behind. In the depths of the jungle, he has discovered a dying tribe, and has set about reviving it in a most unusual fashion. When a colonial administrator and a bishop go to discover the truth about Solomon's women, they will find that civilization can flourish where one least expects it. Along with "The Brides of Solomon," this collection of stories includes the novella "The Case of Valentin Lecormier" and fourteen other tales of unparalleled excitement. From the front lines of World War II to the endless deserts of Syria, intrigue is always close at hand.
Stories, both comic and tragic, of the extremes to which men will go to get what they want At the height of World War II, a Spaniard fighting for Britain shoots a sergeant dead and resolves to face execution like a good soldier. On his first visit to Israel since 1919, a veteran of World War I remembers a long-ago encounter with Jewish refugees. When a gang of revolutionaries press a pistol to a general's neck, he dies in a fit of laughter. Working in the jungles of Argentina, a mechanic is surprised to discover himself falling in love. These are the tales that Geoffrey Household likes to tell. Some are funny; some are sad. Together, they span the oceans of the world. Including the novellas "The Salvation of Pisco Gabar" and "The Case of Valentin Lecormier," this remarkable collection of short fiction shows that whether writing about war or love, Geoffrey Household understood what it meant to be human.
A collection containing some of Household's most beloved tales. With stories ranging from playful hilarity among the Tropic of Capricorn to the savage realities of war and conflict in Cancer, Household's collection encompasses a wealth of human experience. Masterful storytelling and compelling characters render this collection as powerful now as when it was first published in 1981. Includes, among others, Heart in the Mouth, Letter to a Sister, The Brides of Solomon, First Blood, The Hut, The Battle of Mussolini, Immoral Trade and the captivating novella The Salvation of Pisco Gabar.
A retired engineer in rural Britain finds himself caught up in the murderous machinations of an ancient pagan blood cult A former British mining engineer, Yarrow is hoping to start over in the English countryside as the owner and operator of a small combination inn and garage. But while staying the night at a prospective property near Avalon, he is awakened by a loud pounding at the door--and opens it to discover a distraught, seemingly mad visitor babbling on about all manner of incomprehensible concerns. Intrigued by the engaging lunatic Barnabas Fosworthy and unable to turn a deaf ear to his desperate pleas for help in finding a missing young woman, the all-too-good-hearted Yarrow inadvertently invites grave danger into his life. Fosworthy is part of a circle of crazed fanatics tied to ancient and terrifying beliefs--and before Yarrow realizes what he has gotten himself into, he finds himself trapped in an underground cavern, the prisoner of determined cultists who view murder as a gift. Now he must pursue every conceivable path toward escape--or consign himself a horrifying end. Chilling, surprising, and utterly riveting, The Courtesy of Death is a wildly imaginative suspense yarn that blends intrigue with a touch of the otherworldly. Filled with action and unforeseen twists, this is the bravura work of a master storyteller operating at the very top of his game.
A scientist working alone in the Amazon is drawn by local superstition into a terrifying nightmare of brutality and death Deep in the heart of darkness, Dr. Owen Dawnay has stumbled across an unimaginable horror. A dedicated agricultural scientist, he has set up a lonely outpost on the outskirts of Colombia's Amazon to study the flora that thrives in one of the most remote and inhospitable regions on the face of the Earth. It is the odd behavior of the local population, however, that soon captures his interest--their superstitions, their reticence . . . their terrors. Why do the native villagers eschew music and fear the night, huddling behind the walls of their homes after sunset to escape a supposed host of dwarfish evil spirits that emerge from the trees in the evening to dance and feed? A man of rational science, Dr. Dawnay refuses to believe in the supernatural, yet he finds himself inexorably drawn into a mystery as ancient as the land itself. But the predatory eyes he feels watching him are causing him to doubt his science and his sanity--and soon there will be no place for him to hide. With the superb Dance of the Dwarfs, acclaimed author Geoffrey Household delivers a gripping tale of suspense. A chilling, ingeniously inventive masterwork of escalating terror, it is an intelligent, thought-provoking thriller that towers far above almost everything else in the genre.
A collection of poignant stories of men and women who yearn for home An Englishman adrift in New York, Harry Breown dreams of London's tube, its gardens, and its sleepy little pubs. In America, he has been forced to settle for a domineering wife and a bar full of gruff Americans who treat the gentle Englishman as an object of fun. He finds peace only in the shady pathways of the Bronx Zoo, where he has befriended a caged kangaroo--a fellow exile that recognizes Breown as a kindred spirit. Harry's greatest desire is to step into that cage and greet his friend face to face. He resolves that no matter what, he will get past the bars. As an author of thrillers and science fiction, Geoffrey Household distinguished himself with his unerring sense of the longing that lies within all mankind. In this collection of stories, he introduces us to unforgettable characters like Harry, who dream of the home they will never see again.
From the suspenseful and exciting to the heart-wrenchingly poignant, this 1987 collection is a striking example of some of the author's very best work. Stories across a vast array of styles, locales and characters demonstrate Household's ability to paint realistic, sympathetic figures as they struggle through war-torn uncertainty. With stories such as A Jew and an Irishman, Firefly, Debt of Honour, Exiles, Space Fiction, Estancia La Embajada and Chaplain to the Embassy, this collection proves the timeless resonance of Household's writing.
The disappearance of a British intelligence agent at the height of World War II sparks a desperate manhunt through the treacherous shadows of a battle-scarred Middle East Oliver Enwin was a valuable member of the British intelligence community in the Middle East in those dark days at the onset of the Second World War. Talented enough and devious enough to make his mark, he rose to the rank of assistant defense security officer at Nazareth by 1941, entrusted with the choosing, running, and support of local assets. Then he vanished without a trace, leaving fear and turmoil in his wake and scores of unanswered questions. In a tightly closed desert world on the brink of chaos--an essential playing piece in the complex wartime strategies of Allies, Arabs, and Nazis--determining the motives and whereabouts of a British agent gone rogue and potentially traitorous might be the most impossible assignment of the entire Middle Eastern conflict . . . and quite possibly the most important. In the vein of works by John le Carré and Len Deighton, Doom's Caravan is a masterful, ever-twisting tale of wartime espionage unfolding on a vivid and blood-stained canvas. Gripping, electrifying, evocative, and surprising at every turn, this is the work of a true twentieth-century master.
Two children held captive in a remote, abandoned abbey must escape . . . or die At first, Mike believes he must be dreaming when he opens his eyes to total darkness. But before long, the awful truth becomes apparent: He is being held captive somewhere underground by persons unknown. At least he is not alone in this dank, cold, dungeonlike place; a frightened young girl named Carrie is trapped there alongside him, equally unsure of why she is there. With no light, food, water, or answers, and no obvious way out, their situation seems hopeless. While Carrie is a city girl born and bred, Mike is a resourceful boy, at home in the English countryside, and he refuses to let them die in this terrible place. But escape may not be the end of the nightmare, for the world surrounding them holds mysteries beyond their imaginings. A prolific storyteller and peerless creator of page-turning adventure, Geoffrey Household has been praised by the New York Times for having "helped to develop the suspense story into an art form." With Escape into Daylight, he demonstrates the wide range of his remarkable talents, delivering an electrifying thriller that will appeal to readers of every age.
Tales of Europe, before and after the war, when lives could change in an instant Fleeing the Cuban revolution, a businessman's return to England is blocked by the secret police of General Franco. In Hungary, a peasant treasures a barrel of wine as a symbol of the world she lost during the war. At a Romanian ball, in the frenzied years that followed the break-up of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, a British traveler finds himself challenged to a duel. And in England, an American pilot stumbles into an auction and discovers that the Greek bowl in his hands may be worth far more than he is willing to pay. From country to country, Geoffrey Household takes us through the back alleys and open fields of the continent he knows so well, and finds that there is a beautiful madness in the European spirit that no war can kill.
From the fine lines of an Eton suit on the morning of Archduke Franz Ferdinand's assassination to the extreme poverty of the Bosnian border, Household's collection of short stories takes the reader on a vivid and compelling journey around a Europe that was. Including the stories Kindly Stranger, Sabres on the Sand, Three of Castile and Twilight of a God (among others).
Thousands of miles from home, one soldier leads an army to safety The war with Sparta is over, and Athens is at peace for the first time in thirty years. Their Greek enemies subdued, the generals of Athens turn their eyes to the East, where the Persian Empire stretches to the edge of the known world. Never before have Greek soldiers marched into Persia. Xenophon will be among the first. A warrior whose bravery is matched only by his intelligence, Xenophon is a natural leader. When his army of ten thousand men is stranded far from home, it is up to him to lead them back to Greece without sacrificing the principles of democracy that they hold so dear. A retelling of Xenophon's classic Anabasis, this is a thrilling tale of bravery and survival, in which the mind is as valuable a weapon as the sword.
The discovery of a valuable Central American artifact sends a desperate thief racing halfway around the globe and into a world of violence, mystery, and deadly chaos The world has not been kind to Edmond Hawkins. Having recently fled an African nation suffering under the iron rule of a brutal dictator, Hawkins finds himself in London, penniless and with no prospects. A desperate man, he is driven to thievery, but when he pilfers a bag from a strange woman, his luck begins to change. Looking inside, he finds that in addition to a large amount of cash is a pendant made of solid gold, a rare and priceless artifact that Hawkins soon learns is a national treasure from the tiny Central American nation of Malpelo. Convinced that destiny has come knocking, he sets out across the ocean only to find himself plunged into the fiery heart of violence and revolution once he arrives. Hawkins soon realizes that his actions have inadvertently sparked an inexorable chain of events that could have devastating consequences. The last work of acclaimed and prolific British novelist Geoffrey Household, Face to the Sun is a fitting finale to a long and illustrious career. Rich in action, atmosphere, and suspense, it is another riveting adventure from a true master who stands alongside Jack London, Rudyard Kipling, Joseph Conrad, and H. Rider Haggard.
An international scoundrel recalls his life of intrigue and adventure in a witty and exciting nonstop thriller Held prisoner in Britain's fabled Tower of London, Claudio Howard-Wolferstan revels in his well-earned notoriety and reflects on the events that landed him here. A rogue and an adventurer of English and Ecuadorian descent, he has lived a globe-trotting life of peril and excitement, driven by an addiction to the adrenaline rush that comes with placing himself in constant, life-threatening jeopardy. Having used a youthful flirtation with communism to its greatest advantage, he recalls with pride a satisfying career of break-ins and burglaries, brazen deceptions, wild escapes, and daring exploits that made him a target of the British MI6 intelligence service and Soviets alike, and ultimately landed him in the most fabled lock-up in Great Britain. But in an international atmosphere of mistrust, tension, and warring political philosophies, there will always be a place for his kind, and the world hasn't yet heard the last of Claudio Howard-Wolferstan. In the pantheon of great twentieth-century thriller writers, Geoffrey Household, acclaimed for his evocative and colorful locales, deeply human characters, and distinct storytelling voice, occupies a place of honor besides such notable names as Eric Ambler, Ian Fleming, and Len Deighton. Household's breathtaking tales of adventure and intrigue are as enthralling today as they were then, and Fellow Passenger shines with excitement, invention, and wit--a virtuoso performance by a true maestro.
In love with a radical leader, an expatriate must decide whether to put the world before his heart Thirty miles from the Mediterranean coast, in the lush Syrian heartland, there is a compound known as Kasr-el-Sittat--the Fortress of Holy Women. Built by a deranged cult leader to house his many wives, it was abandoned when the Second World War brought the cult to its knees. Now it has been purchased by a group of European exiles: displaced people whose revenge on the world will come in the shape of a mushroom cloud. When life in postwar Britain proves unbearable, Eric Amberson returns to Syria, where he spent the war shuffling papers for the British army. There he meets one of the women of Kasr-el-Sittat and falls quickly in love. Elisa Cantemir is a rare beauty, but Eric will find that beneath her elegant exterior is an anarchist who wants nothing more than to plunge the world back into the hell of war.
A terrorist with a conscience turns against his radical cadre in a desperate attempt to prevent a nuclear nightmare Julian Despard has devoted his life to the New Revolution. As cell leader for the notorious international terrorist organization Magma, he works tirelessly in the shadows for the downfall of established governments. But in the aftermath of the successful theft of a large arms shipment in the Mediterranean--a criminal operation that he masterminded--Despard suddenly finds himself questioning his radical ideals. Magma's recent victory has brought Despard and his cohorts nuclear materials to be deployed against one of the world's most populous cities: London. Despard's conscience will not allow him to take part in the horrific slaughter of many thousands--perhaps millions--of innocents, but attempting to prevent the organization from going through with its plan will turn his former compatriots into lethal, unforgiving enemies. Still, Despard can see no alternative--even with the police closing in on one side and terrorist killers approaching from the other--for the clock is ticking down the seconds to doomsday. Written decades before 9/11 and the realities of twenty-first-century global terrorism, Geoffrey Household's chilling, eerily prescient thriller is even more powerful and relevant today than when it first appeared in print.
In this riveting thriller that recalls Alfred Hitchcock in his prime, an innocent European businessman is inadvertently caught up in a murderous web of international intrigue and forced to run, hide, or die in the English countryside A man of considerable ambition, French and British export agent Georges Rivac is always eager to expand his client base, so he agrees without question to do a simple favor for an unknown Englishman. Charged with delivering an item to an address in London, Rivac is surprised to discover that his arrival is unexpected and unappreciated--and he's shocked to learn soon afterward that his new client is dead. Suddenly the confused businessman is himself a target, pursued by unknown assailants and forced to flee the city, taking refuge in the wilds of rural England. Relying on his wits and dormant survival skills, as well as the help of a beautiful Hungarian freedom fighter, Georges Rivac must now somehow get to the root of the deadly international conspiracy that has placed him in a killer's sights. A gripping adventure reminiscent of The 39 Steps and North by Northwest, The Last Two Weeks of Georges Rivac is a thriller in every sense--a masterful novel chock-full of action and intrigue, racing toward its surprising and breathtaking climax.
With a stroll on the beach, a young man's lifetime of adventure begins Bernardo Brown is walking along the Spanish seashore when he hears the bullets fly, and he takes shelter in the water, where he escapes the firefight in a stolen dinghy. After a treacherous journey along the rocky coastline, he falls into the hands of a Hungarian count who will do whatever it takes to keep Bernardo from ever telling his story to the police. He ships the baffled young man off to Eastern Europe, where he will get into more trouble than he ever imagined. After a lifetime working the Bilbao docks, Bernardo finds himself among monarchs and empresses, soldiers of fortune and devilish spies. As the whirlwind of adventure carries him from court to court, the fate of Europe hangs in the balance--but Bernardo just wants to stop running.
An English university professor on holiday in Spain is drawn into a web of intrigue and murder surrounding an intoxicating woman of mystery Dr. Philip Ardower is fascinated by the stunning beauty in a red cape he encounters on a beach in Spain outside the Hostal de las Olas. While immediately charmed by the lady's sophistication and pluck, the British academic knows nothing of the enchanting Olura's personal history, or the rumors that have accompanied her recent arrival as the companion of an African politician. But when an Italian paparazzo in search of scandal is discovered dead in her hotel room, Olura has no one but Ardower to turn to for help. Suddenly they are on the run together, fleeing the police, the hungry press, and determined assailants who wish them grievous harm, on a furious flight that leads them into the treacherous mines and mountains of Basque Country. In a single day, Andower's once-quiet life is transformed by passion, terror, and violent death into a desperate fight for survival--and a race against the clock to find answers to the perplexing and dangerous mystery of Olura Manoli. One of the twentieth century's most prolific and acclaimed purveyors of intrigue and suspense, Geoffrey Household delivers a richly colorful and evocative thriller brimming with action, mystery, and romance. Recalling the very best of cinematic master Alfred Hitchcock, Household's Olura introduces a heroine readers will not soon forget.
A young English boy stranded on the far side of the ocean must survive Indians and enemies in the perilous New World Miles Philips is but a lad of thirteen when he sets sail aboard the Jesus of Lubeck from Plymouth on the second day of October, 1567. An eager youth willing to learn, he is ready to be of service to Mr. John Hawkins, renowned privateer, adventurer, transporter of African slaves, and general of the fleet of six vessels. But treachery and ambush await them across the ocean in New Spain, and Miles watches in horror as the ship dies bravely in battle at San Juan de Ulua. Forced to make a choice between almost-certain starvation aboard the lone, crippled vessel and taking his chances on land, Miles chooses the latter--setting out on an extraordinary adventure that will test his courage and his wiles as he attempts to find his way back home. Based firmly in history, Geoffrey Household's classic adventure brings a sixteenth-century world of discovery and danger to breathtaking life. A riveting and evocative tale brimming with action and color, Prisoner of the Indies is a magnificent journey back in time that readers of all ages will find impossible to put down.
Accused of treason, a former British security operative and his ally must run for their lives across a vast and wild English landscape According to British intelligence, Alwyn Rory is a traitor to his country. They say the ex-security officer accepted a considerable sum of money from enemy agents, and in return, helped to facilitate the escape of a dangerous spy. Now the supposed turncoat is believed to be in the Soviet Union, having freely defected to the Russian side, leaving his once-beloved homeland behind forever. The reality, however, is far more complicated. Alwyn Rory never left the island. Instead, he has gone to ground in the English countryside with fellow fugitive Adrian Gurney. Survival is the name of the game, but with the CIA, the KGB, and MI6 all dedicated to the covert termination of Rory and Gurney, two men without a country don't stand a chance. Acclaimed author Geoffrey Household combines peerless storytelling with an abiding love for the wild places of Great Britain in a gripping, evocative, breakneck-paced Cold War thriller that races from the South Devon coast to the vast and beautiful Marlborough Downs. As visual and intelligent as it is surprising and exciting, Red Anger is an enduring masterwork of twentieth-century espionage and adventure fiction.
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