||Special Operations Executive
Jack H. Crisp
||1979 - 1980
ABOUT THE SERIES
Mark Sherwood is a spymaster with the British Special Operations Executive.
This actual organization operating during the Second World War was created to conduct acts of sabotage, espionage, and reconnaissance deep behind enemy lines as well as work closely with the various resistance groups to harass Axis troops. It was created in 1940 and finally disbanded in 1946.
In this three-book espionage series, Sherwood had held the rank of Colonel in the British Army when he was assigned to the SOE and put in charge of a team of highly skilled young operatives. However, while the real SOE was broken up after the War, in this series the organization was still active, playing a vital role in British Intelligence, more than a quarter century later, now being run by Sherwood.
Easily in his late fifties or early sixties, Sherwood still stands tall and solid, his thick dark color hair finally showing signs of graying. His friendly manner, especially to his former subordinates, does not, though, mask the seriousness he still takes in his work. The enemies of his country may have changed but they were still many and needed sober fighting.
As a spymaster, Sherwood does not play a major action role in any of the three adventures though his presence and his planning are vital. It is Sherwood's job to find people who can handle the situations that came up and in each of the three recorded cases, the person chosen was a former operative now living a normal life and being totally shocked when their former careers is thrust back at them.
In each case, the recalled agents were living in Canada but the action all takes place in England or on the Continent.
When the books were initially released in hardback, they were presented as solid espionage thrillers. The paperbacks, though, gave a thoroughly different image; their covers spoke of fast action-adventures more in line with the Executioner than with LeCarre and Deighton. The surprise of those buying the books thinking they were getting the former but getting the latter must have been intense.
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