Customer Review

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious, harrowing and all shades in between, 16 July 2008
This review is from: Between Silk and Cyanide (Paperback)
Marks was with SOE during WW2. This book is a memoir of his experiences. Don't be put off by its size. Like some other reviewers, once I started it, I couldn't put it down.

In SOE Marks had the job of briefing agents about the codes they would use in the field. At the start of the war SOE's codes had several weaknesses and Marks chronicles their gradual improvement, often against opposition from various closed-minded people in the military hierarchy.

Particularly moving is his description of the code given to Violette Szabo based on the famous "Life that I have" poem. He also describes SOE's tragic failure to accept that its Dutch network was completely compromised by the Germans and that most of the SOE agents sent to Holland were captured on arrival.

Marks's descriptions of colleagues and the SOE military bureacracy is in places hilarious, his descriptions of the fate of agents in places harrowing. His writing weaves the lightest and the darkest into a compelling story. Many have written about the codebreakers of Bletchley Park and their part in the life-or-death Battle of the Atlantic. As a code-maker, Marks offers a different and more personal perspective on the life-or-death decisions that affected individual agents.

Readers not into codes, codemaking and codebreaking might find the technical details a bit turgid - but they can be skipped without detracting from a narrative that is eye-witness history at its very best.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No

[Add comment]
Post a comment
To insert a product link use the format: [[ASIN:ASIN product-title]] (What's this?)
Amazon will display this name with all your submissions, including reviews and discussion posts. (Learn more)
Name:
Badge:
This badge will be assigned to you and will appear along with your name.
There was an error. Please try again.
Please see the full guidelines ">here.

Official Comment

As a representative of this product you can post one Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
The following name and badge will be shown with this comment:
 (edit name)
After clicking on the Post button you will be asked to create your public name, which will be shown with all your contributions.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.  Learn more
Otherwise, you can still post a regular comment on this review.

Is this your product?

If you are the author, artist, manufacturer or an official representative of this product, you can post an Official Comment on this review. It will appear immediately below the review wherever it is displayed.   Learn more
 
System timed out

We were unable to verify whether you represent the product. Please try again later, or retry now. Otherwise you can post a regular comment.

Since you previously posted an Official Comment, this comment will appear in the comment section below. You also have the option to edit your Official Comment.   Learn more
The maximum number of Official Comments have been posted. This comment will appear in the comment section below.   Learn more
Prompts for sign-in
 

Comments


Sort: Oldest first | Newest first
Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 17 Nov 2008 14:15:36 GMT
I'm pretty sure that this should read that its 'Dutch networks were completely compromised', not Danish !!

J Stynes
‹ Previous 1 Next ›

Review Details

Item

4.6 out of 5 stars (101 customer reviews)
5 star:
 (74)
4 star:
 (15)
3 star:
 (9)
2 star:
 (3)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
Used & New from: 0.71
Add to wishlist
Reviewer


Location: Wales, UK

Top Reviewer Ranking: 1,974