Alan Furst: A Contemporary Master of the Historical Spy Novel

May 29, 2012

We're listening back, on this edition of our program, to a conversation we had in late November of last year with the widely celebrated novelist, Alan Furst. At that time, Furst was just about to appear in Tulsa to receive the Tulsa Library Trust's 2011 Peggy Helmerich Award. He's written several highly acclaimed spy novels over the past 25 years or so; in the summer of 2010, a book reviewer for The New York Times asserted, "Furst is a master of plot." Ever since he published an espionage-driven thriller called "Night Soldiers" in 1988, Furst has been composing popular novels (with shifting, non-recurring locations and heroes) that often focus on little-known or little-remembered facets regarding the origins (or historical margins) of World War II. Many critics believe that Furst's books are more than just works of genre fiction --- that they are, indeed, more akin to literature. The latest book in the "Night Soldiers" series is "Spies of the Balkans," and it's set against the impending invasion of Greece by Nazi Germany. This is the novel that Furst tells us about on today's installment of StudioTulsa.