'Master of the art of deception' New Statesman
The Russians will pay $4,000,000 for the top secret formula to a revolutionary new metal . . . and the CIA will do anything to stop them.
American inventor Dr Paul Forrester is the man that both sides want. He alone can decipher the vital code but, for two years, Forrester has been in a mental asylum - ever since that bloody day when he walked in on his beautiful wife and her lover.
So it's Nona Jacey, Forrester's former lab assistant, who becomes a helpless pawn in the power struggle to possess the scientist. Because she is the only person that holds the key to unlocking Forrester's mind . . .
Born Rene Brabazon Raymond in London, the son of a British colonel in the Indian Army, James Hadley Chase (1906-1985) was educated at King's School in Rochester, Kent, and left home at the age of 18. He initially worked in book sales until, inspired by the rise of gangster culture during the Depression and by reading James M. Cain's The Postman Always Rings Twice, he wrote his first novel, No Orchids for Miss Blandish. Despite the American setting of many of his novels, Chase (like Peter Cheyney, another hugely successful British noir writer) never lived there, writing with the aid of maps and a slang dictionary. He had phenomenal success with the novel, which continued unabated throughout his entire career, spanning 45 years and nearly 90 novels. His work was published in dozens of languages and over thirty titles were adapted for film. He served in the RAF during World War II, where he also edited the RAF Journal. In 1956 he moved to France with his wife and son; they later moved to Switzerland, where Chase lived until his death in 1985.