How to Betray Your Country by James Wolff [7/10]

How to Betray Your Country” is a stylish, immersive twist to the usual spy thriller set in strange lands, for James Wolff, in his sophomore release, chronicles the tumultuous inner world of a career spy gloriously, heroically unravelling. When grief-wracked August Drummond, recently sacked, spies something going on during a flight to Istanbul, he pursues the lead and plunges back into his secret world, this time from the outside. The plot careens like a sports car through the geopolitics of terrorism in Turkey, landing him in the clutches of a Machiavellian manipulator and his ex-sp-shop-rival. The author is a flamboyant, keen stylist, the exotic settings are superbly depicted, and the pace is hectic, but the core triumph of How to Betray Your Country is its examination of a soul in crisis. For those of us steeped in spook fiction, this is an exciting departure.

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