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Spy in Chancery

(The third book in the Peter Craig series)
A novel by

There's a conspiracy of silence in the Embassy, and the Russians are listening

Craig is seconded by S.3 - the Special Security Service - with orders to investigate leaks from the British embassy to the KGB, one of which has already resulted in the assassination of an MI6 agent.

Using his cover as a security advisor, Craig investigates the intrigues and clashing motivations at play in the embassy to find the traitor, with the help of an Ambassador whose disdain for the 'sordid business' of espionage takes a back seat to settling old scores with a little 'disinformatsiya'.

Before a week has passed, the cast of players has grown to include the CIA, private detectives and the Mafia.

With a daring ploy to flush out the spy, Craig makes himself and his friends into targets for the Kremlin's illegal resident.

As Craig's CIA counterpart puts it: 'Counter-intelligence is like two men in the dark. You know the other feller is there and you've got to get him, and you move around with your arms outstretched and try one place after another and find sweet nothing. You're just saying "Where the heck is that bastard? Does he exist?" when your fingers touch. And then suddenly everything is real...'

Reviews of Spy in Chancery

"Most of the action of Spy in Chancery takes place in Rome, where a British agent is trying to locate a leak in the ambassador's office. Benton, who seems to be up on every aspect of code-breaking techniques, goes into great detail about the modus operandi of the Russian and British technologists. It is all thrust and counter-thrust - tense, but quiet for the most part. The ending, however, is explosive. Benton is one of those leisurely Englishmen who has a civilised, cultured style, and who knows how to get the reader involved in a complicated chess game of competing secret agencies. It is almost a case-history he has written, except that the characters are firmly drawn. The heroics are no less vital for being unostentatious."
--New York Times Book Review, 1973

"Our embassy in Rome has been infiltrated again. Suspects narrow down to one of two beautiful, long-legged upper-class girl PAs, neither of whose anatomies can be identified in compromising obscene photographs. Spy-spotting by Peter Craig of the security service is hampered by the doddering ambassador, who fancies himself as a detective. Thrillerish developments."
-- Observer, 1972

"Civilised and witty, Kenneth Benton's Spy in Chancery is yet another proof that the spy story is still a viable form of entertainment.
In the British Embassy in Rome, where Mr Benton worked for seven years, top-secret information is being leaked to the Russians, and Peter Craig, Mr Benton's convincingly authentic secret-service man, has to persuade the affronted ambassador that he has a traitor in his midst. There are some excellent character sketches, including the ambassador, who develops a liking for what he calls 'this sordid intelligence business', and excitement depends, not on sex or violence, but solely on the development of the plot."
--Daily Telegraph, 1972

"Kenneth Benton generates genuine cloak-and-dagger espionage excitement."
-- Columbus, Ohio Dispatch, 1973

"The intrigue is sophisticated, the reader's mind is sent on a false track on the first page, and there is a train of delightful move and counter-move."
-- Lancashire Evening Post, 1972

"Benton has a way of thinking up new twists and keeping secrets which would in any case set this well-paced yarn above most of the field."
-- San Francisco Sunday Examiner, 1974

"Here is a well-crafted story of counterespionage in Rome by an excellent writer who knows cloak-and-daggering as intimately as the Eternal City."
-- Buffalo, NY News, 1974

Genre: Thriller

Used availability for Kenneth Benton's Spy in Chancery

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