001 – All about Len Deighton with Deighton Dossier’s Rob Mallows

All about Len Deighton.

In the first ever episode of the Spybrary Spy Podcast, host Shane Whaley talks to Len Deighton expert Rob Mallows, the man behind the excellent Deighton Dossier website and blog.

Len Deighton Episode 001 of Spybrary Podcast
All about Len Deighton – Episode 001 of Spybrary Podcast

Rob shares with us why he set up the comprehensive Len Deighton website, the only Deighton website endorsed by Len himself. Rob talks us through his favorite Deighton novels and characters and gives his insight into Len's writing and how it differs from John le Carre and Ian Fleming. He suggests what Len Deighton novel to get started with and also tells us which other spy authors he enjoys reading.

They say never to meet your heroes, so it was with some trepidation that Rob accepted the first of several dinner invites from Len. He shares with us his impressions of the man and reveals some of their conversations. We do talk extensively about Bernard Samson and Game, Set and Match so we hope Rob will come back on the show as we will deep dive into Len Deighton's other novels, characters and the movie adaptations

Harry Palmer who was actually unnamed in the Len Deighton books and came from Burnley rather than London.

Who Is Len Deighton?
Leonard Cyril Deighton born 18 February 1929), known as Len Deighton, is a British author. Deighton is considered one of the top three spy novelists of his time (along with Ian Fleming and John le Carré).[1][2] In addition he is a highly acclaimed military historian, cookery writer, and graphic artist. The IPCRESS File (1962), his first novel, was an instant bestseller and broke the mould of thriller writing. The Sunday Times dubbed him “the poet of the spy story”.[3] Deighton’s first protagonist – a nameless spy christened Harry Palmer in the films – was made famous worldwide in the iconic 1960s films starring Michael Caine. (Source wikipedia.)

Links and Resources mentioned on the show.

The Deighton Dossier Website
The Deighton Dossier Blog
The Deighton Dossier Facebook Group
Follow Deighton Dossier on Twitter
and Pinterest!
Spybrary Spy Podcast Discussion Group

Map put together by Rob of Bernard Samson's Berlin
Len Deighton lunches with Ian Fleming article

Books referenced in Episode 001 of Spybrary

Kindle version of Berlin Game available currently at $1.99 absolute bargain!

Publication Order of Bernard Samson Books

Berlin Game (1983)
Mexico Set (1984)
London Match (1985)
Spy Hook (1988)
Spy Line (1989)
Spy Sinker (1990)
Faith (1994)
Hope (1995)
Charity (1996)

All available on Amazon

Charles Cumming Official Site

Jeremy Duns Official Site

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7 Responses
  1. David Craggs

    A great podcast.
    Thoroughly enjoyed it – Len Deighton has made an enormous contribution to modern literature and it is heartening to see him celebrated.

    1. Shane Whaley

      David, thank you ever so much for your kind words. Rob does a phenomenal job of promoting Len’s work and I am hoping Spybrary can contribute to that. We could have gone on for hours so there is plenty more Len material to discuss in future episodes.

      1. David Craggs

        Deighton is endlessly fascinating.
        I wrote an article about his influence titled ‘Ian Fleming’s Literary Legacy: The Anti-Bond’ . It is available at literary007.com which you might enjoy.
        Keep up the good work.