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3 October 1985
Here lies: An Autobiography 
by Eric Ambler.
Weidenfeld, 234 pp., £10.95, June 1985, 0 297 78588 5
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The Levanter 
by Eric Ambler.
Weidenfeld, 216 pp., £8.95, June 1985, 0 297 99521 9
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Doctor Frigo 
by Eric Ambler.
Weidenfeld, 250 pp., £8.95, June 1985, 0 297 76848 4
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The Other Side of the Moon: The Life of David Niven 
by Sheridan Morley.
Weidenfeld, 300 pp., £10.95, September 1985, 9780297787082
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Secrets: Boyhood in a Jewish Hotel 1932-1954 
by Ronald Hayman.
Peter Owen, 224 pp., £12, July 1985, 9780720606423
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A Woman in Custody 
by Audrey Peckham.
Fontana, 253 pp., £3.95, June 1985, 0 00 636952 9
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No Gangster More Bold 
by John Morgan.
Hodder, 179 pp., £9.95, July 1985, 0 340 26387 3
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... EricAmbler told an interviewer recently that though he often felt the urge to write for the stage he was put off by the scrutiny to which he would be subjected: and the pun in the title of his autobiography was ...

Flitting About

Thomas Jones: Alan Furst

14 December 2006
The Foreign Correspondent 
by Alan Furst.
Weidenfeld, 278 pp., £12.99, November 2006, 0 297 84829 1
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... to act like heroes. No historical novelist can avoid finding himself in conversation, if not competition, with the writers of the period in which his stories take place. Between 1935 and 1940, EricAmbler wrote six thrillers in which ordinary men – academics, journalists, language teachers, engineers – under the pressure of extraordinary circumstances are compelled to act like heroes. John le Carr ...

Spadework

John Brown

18 November 1982
Shadow Man: The Life of Dashiell Hammett 
by Richard Layman.
Junction, 285 pp., £9.95, August 1981, 0 86245 027 6
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... contrary to what Hammett/Gutman says, the Hospitalers refused to move from Rhodes to Malta and were given four islands by Charles V, not three. There are some crime novelists (Raymond Chandler and EricAmbler come to mind) who owe their inflated reputations to critics who neither know nor like crime fiction; even if Hammett is one of these novelists – and he certainly suffers badly by comparison ...
24 January 1980
... in the Times and a prize named after him for bright young English and American editors. He also had, and still has, the gratitude and affection of a host of authors as different as Edna O’Brien and EricAmbler, Ronald Blythe and Antonia Fraser. That, perhaps, is the crucial difference between the two men. Lane was a publisher’s publisher, a man with immense commercial flair who opened up markets ...

Bosh

E.S. Turner: Kiss me, Eric

17 April 2003
Dean Farrar and ‘Eric’: A Study of ‘Eric, or Little by Little’, together with the Complete Text of the Book 
by Ian Anstruther.
Haggerston, 237 pp., £19.95, January 2003, 1 869812 19 0
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... From the 11th century to the 19th not a single Eric was to be found in England, according to the Harrap Book of Boys’ and Girls’ Names. Then in 1858 the schoolmaster Frederic Farrar, not yet a dean, published that passionately morbid tale Eric, or ...

Madly Excited

John Bayley

1 June 1989
The Life of Graham Greene. Vol. I: 1904-1939 
by Norman Sherry.
Cape, 783 pp., £16.95, April 1989, 0 224 02654 2
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... independently of his magical capacity to create – the one does not affect the other; and this equability is found, too, at a much humbler level – that of the best-seller and thriller-writer. EricAmbler, a craftsman much admired by Greene, would seem not to have needed to make any pact with the Grub Street Mephistopheles: he stays the same whatever he writes. A Greene, though, or an Ian ...

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