Wainwright_James2 Wainwright_James3 Wainwright_James1
Full Name: James Wainwright
Nationality: British
Organization: The Firm
Occupation Agent

Creator: Berkely Mather
Time Span: 1968 - 1971


Wainwright is a spy for British Intelligence.

His area of expertise is the Far East, knowledge obtained while growing up in Shanghai where his father was a Chief Inspector for the International Concession in that city. Even though his father held an important law enforcement position, Wainwright's love of prowling areas of the city most foreigners never went got him into scrapes where only an ability to fight to defend yourself kept you from getting seriously dead. Over time he acquired an innate sense of potential danger which would help him in his future work.

After an education in England as a young man, he joined the National Service where he served for several years. His abilities with languages as well as his self-reliant ways got him noticed by scouts looking for talents outside the normal soldiering. When his enlistment ended, he was offered a job handling translations for a prominent bank and worked there a year before an invitation to a dinner with the bank president turned into an two hour interview in the man's den with scouts from the Secret Service. They had use for a man of Wainwright's history and ability and Wainwright was so bored by his job that he took the offer almost immediately. It did not take a genius to know the best area of the world to send someone like Wainwright and so it was back to the Far East that he headed.

Wainwright holds grudging respect for his boss, called the Gaffer, but absolutely no liking of the man or the things he forces Wainwright to do. He also has little use for paper pushers and even less for the bean counters who closely monitor his expense reports. Though now in his mid 30's with the last few working for the Gaffer, he still has a conscience and the decency to feel indecent at the things he is ordered to do and none of the rationale of the Gaffer can help him feel clean afterward. Yet he still follows the orders.


Number of Books:3
First Appearance:1968
Last Appearance:1971

1 A Spy For A Spy A Spy For A Spy
aka The Springers
Written by Berkely Mather
Copyright: 1968

To get back a valuable individual held by the Chinese government, the Firm must trade one of their most valuable prisoners, a Russian agent. To accomplish this, James Wainwright must break him out of a British prison and then sneak him out of the country.

2 The Break In The Line The Break In The Line
aka The Break
Written by Berkely Mather
Copyright: 1970

The "Break" is that point where heroin shipments from China leave that country. The drug is headed to Albania for distribution throughout Europe, corrupting the young and providing needed funds to the Communists. James Wainwright's job is to find the Break and break it.

3 The Terminators The Terminators
Written by Berkely Mather
Copyright: 1971

The Gaffer wants a Russian. The target is in the Kashmir region of India, making it a job for fellow agent Idwal Rees. But James Wainwright has done all the footwork and thinks it should be his assignment. The two agents must put aside their personal pride to survive a region where several parties want everyong else dead.


I think it was just flat out impossible for Mr. Mather to create a series that wasn't good. Granted, all three of his spy series revolve around one highly immoral spymaster, but each series character is quite a bit different from the others. Good job done and a darned good read.

I like Wainwright's sense of honor and what is and is not right. Certainly he is in the wrong business for such a prickly conscience but it is fun to have him at constant odds with his aging, crafty, virtually heartless boss.


My Grade: B+


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