When an RAF Dakota, presumed lost at sea in 1945, is discovered in a drained lake in Lincolnshire, together with its pilot and a cargo of worthless rubble, it falls to David Audley of the MOD to puzzle out just why the Russians are so interested in the discovery - and what the plane was carrying that is important enough to kill for.
Anthony Price was born in England in 1928. He became a captain in the British Army before studying at Oxford University, then became a journalist on the Westminster Press and Oxford Times. Price is the author of nineteen novels featuring Dr David Audley and Colonel Jack Butler, which focus on a group of counter-intelligence agents. Approximately twenty years elapse between the first and last novel in the series, and most of the plots are connected with one or more important events in military history. The first three novels were adapted into a six-part BBC TV drama in the 1980s, and The Labyrinth Makers (for which he won a CWA Silver Dagger) and Other Paths to Glory have both been produced as BBC radio dramas.
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Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By catsatcastle on 15-02-15
The first David Audley novel
What made the experience of listening to The Labyrinth Makers the most enjoyable?
I like the complex plot and the superbly written dialogue. It has the trademark historical connection that often features in these books.
The narrator is excellent and has a wonderful line in languid voices to suit the public school characters, of which there are a few of varying ages and they are all distinct. He also characterises Jack Butler (Sandhurst via Lancashire) well. He is to the life the career soldier, clever, disciplined and taking no nonsense. Other accents sound plausible to me and the female characters are not forced.
Price develops his characters in a very satisfying way. This is the first in a long series of books and David Audley features in all of them. He has made himself unpopular by being too clever by half and is thrust out into the field and away from his beloved research into the Middle East. He is not always likeable but is always interesting.
What other book might you compare The Labyrinth Makers to, and why?
The closest I can get is to the novels of John le Carre. They are similarly complex and beautifully written. Price's books differ though in that they are not suffused with a sense of betrayal although sometimes the people on the same side are not always being straight with each other. There is a lightness of touch and there are shots of humour too. They also tend to take place mainly in the mind and through dialogue but often with a sudden and unexpected burst of violent but not graphic violence.
Which scene did you most enjoy?
The final scene, which I can't explain fully without giving away the story. All of the themes come together in a very satisfying way.
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
No, this is of that sort of book.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Anniebligh on 27-03-13
Good place to start.
The stories in the series dip back and forward through time and follow different characters.
After doing my usual search I did find the chronological order of writing.
(1971) The Labyrinth Makers;
The Alamut Ambush (1972)
Colonel Butler's Wolf (1972)
October Men (1973)
(1975) Other Paths to Glory
Our Man in Camelot (1975)
War Game (1977)
The '44 Vintage (1978)
Tomorrow's Ghost (1979)
The Hour of the Donkey (1980)
Soldier No More (1981)
The Old Vengeful (1982)
Gunner Kelly (1983)
Sion Crossing (1984)
Here Be Monsters (1985)
For the Good of the State (1986)
A New Kind of War (1987)
A Prospect of Vengeance (1988)
The Memory Trap (1989
I also learned there are a few good entry points, so I started at 'The Hour of the Donkey' and it does really seem that each is a stand alone story.
As Audible has all 19 books, this one is also a good starting point. Simon Schatzsberger does read very well and I am following the books he reads, first.
As a series I really like them, because they do move in time and central characters.
I did enjoy 'The Labyrinth Makers' more than 'Other Paths to Glory' that won the Gold Dagger..
My expectation is that after hearing all 19 I am likely to go back, and yes I do anticipate I will be following Anthony Price for quite a while.
Even though the stories are fiction, I think many of the events described in the stories are based in history. They cover World War1 and 11 and the Cold War period.
8 of 8 people found this review helpful
By Cookie on 13-01-13
Cold War English Spies
New series, start with this one since audible does not have these numbered yet, I went to amazon to find out where to start. I have listened to three of these treasures before writing this review. I find these spy novels a little more accessible than Le Carre and less prurient than Littell (both of which I totally love). These novels are perhaps a little quieter and the characters deeper. Although the plots are no less intricate and satisfying. I find a bit of Ngaio Marsh and Margery Allingham here too. Please forgive the name dropping, but if description fails, simile seems to do the trick. If any of these authors appeal, and even if they don't, give this author a try, I do not think you will be disappointed.
20 of 23 people found this review helpful