BookBrowse Reviews A Spy Among Friends by Ben Macintyre

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A Spy Among Friends

Kim Philby and the Great Betrayal

by Ben Macintyre

A Spy Among Friends
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  • First Published:
    Jul 2014, 384 pages
    May 2015, 384 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Kim Kovacs

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This compulsively readable and well-researched account explains how a well-placed Cambridge-educated Englishman managed to work as a spy for both the Soviets and the Brits at the same time.

Kim Philby (1912-1988) was a highly ranked member of the British Secret Intelligent Service (the SIS, aka MI6) who at one time was responsible for all covert operations against the USSR and later for MI6's collaboration with the United States' CIA in their espionage work against the Soviets. Throughout his 30-year career he was also a spy for Moscow. In A Spy among Friends, Ben MacIntyre details Philby's exploits and betrayals and elucidates exactly why he was able to get away with his activities for so long.

Many books have covered Philby and the rest of the "Cambridge Five," a spy ring active during and after WWII, that was comprised of British natives who had attained high-ranking jobs in the government. What makes MacIntyre's entry unique is his concentration on Philby's close friendships that enabled him to continue acting on behalf of the USSR until his...

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