The Secret World of Sidney Reilly
by Richard B. Spence

Publisher:  Feral House

Pub Date:  January 2003

Format:   Hardcover

Brief Description
The first definitive biography of one of the most enigmatic figures of the 20th century, the international spy who was the ace of spies, the living prototype of James Bond.
(see below for Full Description)

"Richard Spence's extensively researched book is an historical Detective read you can't put down. This book establishes him as the authority on Sidney Reilly, the Ace of Spies."
—Shay McNeal, author of The Secret Plot to Save the Tsar

Full Description

   "James Bond is just a piece of rubbish I dreamed up.  He's not a Sidney Reilly, you know."
--Ian Fleming

          TRUST NO ONE, Richard B. Spence’s exhaustive volume about one of the most enigmatic and mysterious figures of the twentieth century, accesses new material from both Russian and British intelligence, and corrects decades of disinformation from every political side of the capitalist/communist equation.
          Sidney Reilly spent most of his life in the shadows of international intrigue and counted among his legion of friends, victims and accomplices the likes of Rasputin and Churchill. He often is portrayed as a master spy, a "man who never made a mistake"--the living prototype of James Bond. But Reilly's real exploits exceeded anything credited to fictional Bond. Born into a Polish Jewish family as Salomon Rosenblum, he embarked on an amazing, daring and often bewildering career in which he assumed the persona of an Irish-named British gentleman along with many other identities. He was a slightly different person to every man who knew him and every woman who loved him. Using the so-called System, Sidney Reilly was as much a master criminal as spy and amassed a fortune through the ruthless bartering of influence and information. He was employed and feared by capitalists and commissars alike. Was he a dedicated anti-communist, the Soviet’s first "mole," or simply an unscrupulous con man? Even his end is an enigma: did the Soviets shoot him in 1925, or did he live to scheme-on for many years to come? Reilly’s career offers a window into the pre and post-WWI era’s secret underworld of political and economic intrigue and reveal a side of recent history that most works overlook or avoid.

About the Author
         Richard B. Spence is professor of history at University of Idaho, with special interests in modern Russia and intelligence.  He is the author of a biography of Reilly's partner in intrigue, Boris Saviskov, and of numerous articles including the espionage exploits of Aleister Crowley.  His work has appeared in The Historian, Intelligence and National Security, International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence, and Revolutionary Russia

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