Just seven months to go before the publication of M, as it will be in the UK, and Agent M, for everyone in North America – my biography of Maxwell Knight.

Here are two generous pre-publication quotes, which I’m hugely grateful for, one from Adam Sisman, author of the acclaimed biography of John le Carré, the other from Nigel West, the renowned intelligence expert who has been writing about MI5 and its milieu for many years.


Praise for M:

‘Crammed with cracking stories and founded on sound research, Henry Hemming’s biography of Maxwell Knight – ‘M’ – stands comparison with the bestselling books of Ben Macintyre.’

ADAM SISMAN (Author of John Le Carré)


‘Absolute proof that assiduous digging in the archives can produce scoops. This is intelligence research at its best, especially in the identification of hitherto anonymous agents. Definitely a great contribution to the literature.’

NIGEL WEST (Author of MI5)


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New Biography of MI5′s Maxwell Knight

At last I can announce my next book. It’s called M. It’s a biography of the great MI5 spymaster Maxwell Knight – the naturalist and jazz-obsessive who helped to inspire the James Bond character ‘M’.

Here’s a bit more about it all in today’s The Bookseller.

And some more here.

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V happy to say that The Ingenious Mr P is now available as an audiobook, read beautifully by James Langton (that’s him above).

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Here’s a fascinating review by Keith Jeffery in The Wall Street Journal.

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The New York Times


This is really exciting, and not just for the fact that they’ve turned the cover of the book into a turquoise ice lolly – TIMP in Cool Beach Books For Hot Summer Days, by Janet Maslin, in The New York Times.

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