Book details

An Affair of Spies

A Novel

Author: Ronald H. Balson

An Affair of Spies

An Affair of Spies

About This Book

From the winner of the National Jewish Book Award—Ronald H. Balson's An Affair of Spies tells of a spy mission to rescue a defector from Germany and prevent the Nazis from creating...

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Book Details

From the winner of the National Jewish Book Award—Ronald H. Balson's An Affair of Spies tells of a spy mission to rescue a defector from Germany and prevent the Nazis from creating an atomic bomb.

Nathan Silverman grew up in Berlin in the 1920s, the son of a homemaker and a theoretical physicist. His idyllic childhood was soon marred by increasing levels of bigotry against his family and the rest of the Jewish community, and after his uncle is arrested on Kristallnacht, he leaves Germany for New York City with only his mother’s wedding ring to sell for survival.

While attending an evening course at Columbia in 1942, Nathan notices a recruitment poster on a university wall and decides to enlist in the military and help fight the Nazi regime. To his surprise, he is quickly selected for a special assignment; he is trained as a spy, and ordered to report to the Manhattan Project. There he learns that the Allies are racing to develop a nuclear weapon before the Nazis, and a German theoretical physicist is hoping to defect. The physicist was a friend of his father's, and Nathan's mission is to return to Berlin via France and smuggle him out of Europe.

Nathan will be accompanied by Dr. Allison Fisher, a brilliant young scientist who can speak French; he travels to her lab at the University of Chicago for a crash course in nuclear physics, then they embark on their adventure. Nathan and Allison soon develop feelings for one another, but as their relationship deepens they move ever closer to their dangerous goal. Will they be able to escape Europe with the defector and start a new life together, or will they fail their mission and become two more casualties of war?

An Affair of Spies
is an action-packed tale of heroism and love in the face of unspeakable evil. Author Ronald H. Balson has applied his unmatched talent for evocative and painstakingly authentic storytelling to the high-stakes world of espionage and created his most thrilling novel yet.

Imprint Publisher

St. Martin's Press



Reading Guide

In The News

Praise for Defending Britta Stein:
"This is historical fiction at its best...mystery, intrigue, suspense, and history, all intertwined into a riveting novel." —Elise Cooper, Military Press

"I love the Liam Taggart and Catherine Lockhart novels. They’re always well written and the characters are like old friends to visit every year...Another winner from Ronald H. Balson." —Red Carpet Crash

"This brilliantly imagined novel [is] part courtroom drama, part historical reckoning. Chock-full of finely wrought detail about the war and dashed with suspense and intrigue, it's a must-read for historical fiction buffs." —Newsweek

“The reader grapples with the themes of good and evil, truth and lies, courage and betrayal, and punishment and revenge. Defending Britta Stein is an inspirational and absorbing work.”
—Renita Last, Jewish Book Council

Praise for Eli's Promise:
"A captivating saga of the Holocaust and its aftermath spanning decades and continents...Balson’s meticulous historical detail, vivid prose and unforgettable characters further solidify his place among the most esteemed writers of historical fiction today." —Pam Jenoff, bestselling author of The Lost Girls of Paris

"A powerful, superbly crafted tale...equal parts heartbreaking and life affirming, with themes that are as relevant today as ever. Eli's Promise is historical fiction at its finest, a riveting page turner that will hook readers from the start." —Jane Healey, bestselling author of The Beantown Girls

"Balson juggles between his three stories effectively, writing with great emotion but without overt melodrama, always aware of the tragic ways in which history repeats itself." —Bill Ott, Booklist

About the Creators

An Affair of Spies

An Affair of Spies