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Anthony Price Books In Order

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Publication Order of Dr David Audley & Colonel Jack Butler Books

The Labyrinth Makers (1970)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Alamut Ambush (1971)Description / Buy at Amazon
Colonel Butler's Wolf (1972)Description / Buy at Amazon
October Men (1973)Description / Buy at Amazon
Other Paths to Glory (1974)Description / Buy at Amazon
Our Man in Camelot (1975)Description / Buy at Amazon
War Game (1976)Description / Buy at Amazon
The '44 Vintage (1978)Description / Buy at Amazon
Tomorrow's Ghost (1979)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Hour Of The Donkey (1980)Description / Buy at Amazon
Soldier No More (1981)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Old Vengeful (1982)Description / Buy at Amazon
Gunner Kelly (1983)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sion Crossing (1984)Description / Buy at Amazon
Here Be Monsters (1985)Description / Buy at Amazon
For the Good of the State (1986)Description / Buy at Amazon
A New Kind of War (1987)Description / Buy at Amazon
A Prospect Of Vengeance (1988)Description / Buy at Amazon
The Memory Trap (1989)Description / Buy at Amazon

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

Eyes Of The Fleet (1980)Description / Buy at Amazon

Anthony Price, born Alan Anthony Price is a British author of a series of mystery thriller novels that he wrote between 1970 and 1990. Of the twenty novels written by Price, nineteen were spy thrillers, save for the nonfiction title, The Eyes of the Fleet: A Popular History of Frigates and Frigate Captains that he published in 1990. The series of novels by Price is arguably one of the most brilliant spy novels that is richly historical fictional yet having high levels of plausibility, is wonderfully interconnected, and brilliantly sustained ever to be written by a single author. It stars the operatives of one of Britain’s most effective branch of intelligence that in a later interview, he asserted was the Research and Development Department. With regard to his schooling and professional achievements, Price went to The Kings School, Canterbury before proceeding to serve in the army for two years where he attained the rank of Captain. After quitting the army in 1949, he attended Merton College in Oxford where he studied history graduating with an M.A in 1956. A man who wore many hats, he joined the Westminster Press in 1952, where he served as a journalist until 1988. He also served as editor for the Oxford Times between 1972 and 1988.

Most of Anthony Price’s novels in the Dr. David Audley & Colonel Jack Butler series feature a group of counter intelligence operatives that work for an agency that bears a striking resemblance to MI5. Most of the time, their agency is referred to as the Ministry of Defense though some of the novels such as Our Man in Camelot may suggest that the agency is more like the MI5. It is also in the course of reading the novel that it becomes clear that while the agency’s main mission is in intelligence and counterintelligence, it has been sequestered under Research and Development department of the Ministry of Defense, from where it draws much of its budget. Colonel Jack Butler is the latest head of the agency after succeeding Sir Fredrick Clinton. David Audley the chief protagonist and best agent of the Ministry of Defense is a brilliant historian who has become a spy. He has a penchant for quoting Rudyard Kipling and most of all tends to adopt unorthodox methods in doing his job.

Audley the lead character makes an appearance in all the 19 novels though he is not the chief protagonist in all of them. He is first introduced in the first novel of the series, The Labyrinth Makers, together with his colleagues Paul Mitchell a historian, Hugh Roskill the Squadron Leader, and Jack Butler a fellow spy. Anthony Price’s writing is best compared to that of John Le Carre, even as Price was way ahead in the novel writing scene before Carre had published a single novel. His novels also have more depth given that Price does not simply tell of the enmities and rivalries in the agency, but rather tells the novels from a third person perspective. Price’s characters traverse the real-time and hence we are exposed to the evolution and change in character throughout the twenty-year period of the novels. The novels also have strong elements of history and archeology, the most prominent of which are the events of military history such as the Second World War that several of the protagonists were involved in. But what makes Price so exceptional is his expert unfurling of plot through an exposition of his characters words and thoughts, which he uses to color the other characters. Anthony Price never gives a physical description of his characters physical appearance though the depth to which he develops his characters is one of the best of any detective mystery thriller even if it is all done through their conversation. With Butler, Roskill and Audley engaging in long dialogues seeking to find solutions and work through problems, over time we get a good understanding of their psyches.

In 1983, Anthony Price’s first three novels were adopted into a six part television series that aired on British television. The three novels were later adapted into three TV movies that were released in 1986. All three characters Roskill, Audley, and Butler made an appearance in the movie and TV series, with Butler renamed and replaced so that his story could be woven into all the movies. The BBC Radio has also adapted the highly popular novels Other Paths to Glory and The Labyrinth Makers into one-off dramas.

In The Labyrinth Makers David Audley plays the role of an unlikely spy. Even as his job designation shows that he is an employee of the England Ministry of Defense, it is all a front as he works in a backroom as a highly skilled researcher on the Middle East. He is interrupted from his daily drudgery when a World War II era cargo plane is found at a drained out lake, with the pilot’s body in it. What is even more puzzling is that though the plane is empty save for the pilot’s body, the Russians are so interested in it that they attend the funeral. Why has Audley been tapped as the lead in the bizarre investigation? As he starts chipping away at the facts of the case, he has a sneaky suspicion that given that he is not a field officer, he may have been assigned the case just so that he could fail, ensuring the decades old secrets remain just that. But whoever may have assigned him the case with such a motive may have made a huge mistake. As a trained researcher and scholar that is severely allergic to loose ends, he will not rest until he unravels the mystery which is certain to have explosive consequences.

In Colonel Butler’s Wolf, the Russians are now looking within British universities for a few good men. The strategy has been very successful for them in the past, but this time it has a twist. Dr. David Audley soon determines that the Russians are not in the British colleges only to recruit undercover spies, but also to lay the groundwork to destroy the UK. With the novel stretching from the comfortable and dim Oxford reading rooms to the ruins of Hadrian’s Wall, Audley searches for the university don charged with recruiting young impressionable British students for the Soviet cause. The novel is a tale of spasmodic violence, double identities, and conjecture that will have any mystery buff on the edge of their seat.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Anthony Price

One Response to “Anthony Price”

  1. Paula Stone: 4 years ago

    I disagree there is no physical description of his characters. David Audley is big with a rugby players physique and a broken nose, Mitchell is handsome, Elizabeth ugly but with a good figure, Richardson looks Italian, Roskill has a limp


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