Tightrope by Simon Mawer


June 2015

Simon Mawer

A brilliant Cold War spy story from the Man Booker shortlisted author of The Glass Room


Two years after parachuting into south-west France as an agent for SOE, Marian Sutro escapes from Ravensbrück and returns home to Oxford, decorated by the French and British governments for her services. She has learnt to become invisible on the streets of Paris, to kill and survive torture and imprisonment - now she must learn to adapt again, this time to the strange normality of life in post-war England.
But while Marian tries to rebuild her life and cast off her identity as a spy and heroine of the resistance, the memories of torture, heartbreak and betrayal won't leave her - and nor will the longing for adventure. When her old handler tempts her back into the shadowy world of espionage, the need to serve the greater good proves hard to ignore. Drawn deep into the dark heart Of Cold War politics, Marian must risk everything to protect those she loves, to serve the cause she believes in and - most of all - to follow her own desires.
A powerful examination of the complex idealism and courage of those who continued the fight for peace when the Second World War was over, Tightrope is also the story of an unforgettable woman: assassin and survivor, heroine and traitor.

About the author:

Simon Mawer is the highly acclaimed author of two works of non-fiction and eight novels, including: Mendel's Dwarf, which was longlisted for the Booker Prize; The Fall, which won the Boardman Tasker Prize; A Jealous God;The Bitter Cross; The Gospel of Judas; Swimming to Ithaca; The Glass Room, which was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize 2009; and The Girl Who Fell From the Sky.

Praise for The Girl Who Fell From the Sky:

'Streamlined and tautly paced . . . [Mawer] always keeps the pace brisk, the underlying tension high' Guardian

'As good as Le Carre . . . I have rarely read a novel that made fear so acute, so tangible . . . A novel of high intelligence and creative imagination, strong in plot and wonderfully atmospheric' Allan Massie, Scotsman

'An absorbing novel full of treachery, twilight and terror' Telegraph

'A stark, focused adventure . . . [A] skillfully and intelligently executed thriller' Washington Post


Simon Mawer on Twitter

Author of The Glass Room, The Fall, Mendel's Dwarf, The Girl Who Fell From The Sky, aka (in the US) Trapeze