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Adam Hall was a pseudonym used by Trevor Dudley-Smith who was in Kent, United Kingdom, in February 17, 1920. He attended Yardley Court Preparatory school and Seven Oaks School. During the Second World War, he served as a flight engineer in the Royal Air Force. After the war he began a full time writer. Author Trevor lived Spain and France. Later he moved to United States, and settled in Phoenix, Arizona. He used the pseudonym Elleston Trevor in 1946, for a non mystery book and later adopted it as his legal name. Author Trevor Dudley-Smith also wrote under the pseudonyms of Adam Hall, Trevor Burgess, Simon Rattray, Roger Fitzalan, Mansell Black, Howard North, Ceaser Smith, Lesley Stone and Warwick Scott. His best know works are the series about the British agent Quiller written as Adam Hall and The Flight of the Phoenix written as Elleston Trevor. He also wrote mysteries, plays, thrillers, juvenile novels, and short stories. In 1965, Author Elleston Trevor received the Edgar Allan Poe Award by Mystery Writers of America and the French Grand Prix de Litterature Policiere for The Quiller Memorandum. In 1967, this book was made into a movie, starring Alec Guinness and George Segal. Other novels of this Author that made it to the screen include the Quiller series, the TV movie The Penthouse and the Flight of the Phoenix filmed in 1965. Under the pen name Adam Hall, Author Elleston Trevor wrote 18 popular novels chronicling the adventures of the British spy, Quiller. He died of cancer on July 21, 1995.
The novel The Berlin Memorandum also known as The Quiller Memorandum is the first book of the Quiller series. This well written tale of espionage takes place 15 years after the Second World War and is staged in West Berlin. The main character is Quiller, a British spy, who operates without a gun, cover or contacts. He takes on a neo-Nazi secret organization and its war criminal leader. In his mission, Quiller unearths a complex and malevolent scheme more dangerous to the world than any crime committed during the World War II. The novel begins with a murder scene, where a man is shot dead in the middle of the night in a deserted West Berlin street as he enters a phone booth to make a call. Agent Jones is the second British spy to be murdered in West Berlin by the underground neo-Nazi organization, known as the Phoenix. Quiller is send to Berlin, and at the Nazi’s 1936 Olympia Stadium, his superior briefs him about the secret Neo-Nazis and orders him to find the Phoenix Head Quarters. In Berlin, Quiller avoids someone following him, and then confronts the stranger in a pub, only to find out that the man is his minder, Hengel. Hengel hands Quiller a news paper cutting, bowling alley ticket, and a swimming pool ticket, all found on Jones body. Quiller’s inquiries about Jones at the bowling alley draw nothing and the swimming pool manager, Hassler throws him out. Quiller then pretends to be a reporter and visits the school featured in the news paper cutting, where a teacher had recently been unmasked as a Nazi war criminal. The school’s headmistress introduces him to a teacher, Inge Lindt, who is fluent in English and after interviewing her about her colleagues, drives her back to her flat where he stops briefly for a drink. On leaving, Quiller confronts a man who seems to be trailing him. Though he had told Hengel that he didn’t understand German, Quiller is fluent in the language. The man vehemently denies trailing him, other men intervene in the exchange, and Quiller returns to his hotel. Later Quiller drives off and manages to lose his minder, Hengel, but other cars seem to be trailing him. Soon he feels drowsy and becomes unconscious while stopped at a traffic light. A car stops alongside him and a man removes Quiller from the driver’s seat and drives on. Quiller regains consciousness in a chair in a palatial room, surrounded by many of the previous incidental people, all members of the Phoenix led by the German aristocrat, Oktober. Quiller declines to answer Oktober’s questions about the SIS operation and how much is known about the Phoenix. His attempts to escape fail and he is injected with a truth serum, but even then, he only utters a few clues and doesn’t answer Oktober’s questions and he orders Quiller to be killed. Quiller wakes somewhere in the city lying beside a river. He steals a cab, evades a trailing Mercedes and books himself into a dingy hotel from where he telephones Inge and they arrange to meet the following evening. His boss meets Quiller and explains that each side is trying to discover and destroy the other’s base. Only Quiller is in a position to know both. Inge, after sleeping with Quiller, admits that her friend might know the location of the Phoenix HQ. She takes Quiller to the swimming pool manger, Hassler, who is now friendlier. He drives Quiller, Inge and Inge’s headmistress to an old neglected building. Here Quiller insists on investigating the building alone. Hessler and Inge’s boss leave the car for Quiller to drive Inge home. Left alone with Quiller, Inge confesses her love for him. The house is on the street where Jones was murdered and though the house had seemed empty, Quiller soon finds himself surrounded by Oktober’s men. Quiller is horrified that Inge has been caught too. Oktober gives Quiller an ultimatum to reveal the SIS base by dawn or both of them will be killed. Quiller is taken out onto the dark streets surrounded by armed Phoenix men who make it impossible for him to contact anybody. At dawn, he is taken back to his hotel and the armed Oktober’s men stand guard outside. In the hotel he discovers that the phone has been destroyed to prevent him from using it, but he manages to escape into a courtyard of lock-up garages. He finds his car booby-trapped and leaves the engine running to explode the bomb. The Phoenix men assume that he has been killed in the explosion. Quiller informs the SIS of the location of the Phoenix’s HQ. The Phoenix members are arrested but Inge is not there. Quiller visits her at school where Inge explains that she was lucky they let her go. Quiller thinks otherwise and bids her bye.
The second novel of the Quiller series is he 9th Directive. The novel has a fast paced plot that is set in Thailand. South East Asia is turmoil and the British government wishes to maintain good relations with Thailand. A very high ranking representative of the Queen of England is scheduled to visit Bangkok on a good will tour. Before the arrival of the high ranking British official in Thailand, the top secret British espionage Bureau discovers a threat against his life. Somewhere among the golden spires, lurches a deadly assassin who must be stopped. The Bureau feels ordinary security measures are not adequate, and sends Quiller to Bangkok to protect the very important British dignitary who will be visiting Thailand. Quiller is ordered to investigate how such an attempt might be made and to ensure that it is not successful. Quiller is an independent, even cynical loner and he is the only man capable of tracking down the deadly assassin. He approaches the assignment in his usual efficient style, but finds himself occasionally outsmarted!
Book Series In Order » Authors » Adam Hall