Posts tagged ‘Alan Furst’

Alan Furst’s “Spies of Warsaw” Comes to TV

Alan Furst ’67g, the prolific author who specializes in World War II-era espionage thrillers, is bringing his suspenseful storytelling to your living room. “The Spies of Warsaw,” a miniseries based on his book of the same name, debuts tonight on BBC America.


The New York Times calls the series “true to the original in story and spirit: an enjoyable, straightforward espionage tale.” You can check out a trailer here.

Ryan Jones, senior editor

April 3, 2013 at 4:35 pm Leave a comment

An Honor That Alan Furst is More than OK With

The novelist Alan Furst ’67g is the 2011 recipient of the Helmerich Award, a literary prize given annually by the Tulsa Library Trust. Furst recently told the Tulsa World that he appreciated the award because it “goes to really good writers,” and he wasn’t kidding. Among the authors honored: John Updike, Margaret Atwood, Joyce Carol Oates, and Ian McEwan.

A cool coincidence (we assume): Furst’s most recent novel, 2010’s Spies of the Balkans, is partly set in Tulsa. His next book is due out in the summer of 2012.

Ryan Jones, senior editor

March 11, 2011 at 1:43 am Leave a comment

Entertaining Interview with Alan Furst

I came late to Twitter, but I’ve come to rely on it and—dare I say?—enjoy it. Why? Because of days like Monday, when author Susan Orlean, whom I follow, alerted me to an NPR interview with Alan Furst ’67g, who has a new book, Spies of the Balkans, coming out today.

The original tweet came from a book critic at The New York Times, Dwight Garner, who wrote: “Alan Furst, charming as hell on Morning Edition. Made me want to pack a few of his novels for the weekend.” Orlean, who re-tweeted Garner’s post, agreed. I dug up the interview (which you can listen to here), and I, too, was charmed.

A couple of highlights from Furst, whom we profiled in our May/June 2008 issue:

—Agreeing with host Steve Inskeep that his favorite characters are the morally ambiguous ones: “Absolutely because those are the readers of the book; those are the people who are going to say, well, what would I do—and no kidding, what would I do? What would I really do? It’s always nice to think that you would be a hero. On the other hand, that might have something to do with what’s going to happen to your wife, what’s going to happen to your children, what’s going to happen to your parents. It’s not a clean business.”

—On why he continually returns to the early years of World War II and the period just before it: “You know, the human spirit was at its worst and at its best. Don’t ask me why. It just was. And this period, 1933 to 1942, I’ve begun to think of it as an enormous room with a thousand corners. There are so many stories and so many places, all of them so different. So it’s always up to me to find another great story.”

And this morning, I found this NPR review of the new book, which says Furst is “working at the top of his powers.”

Lori Shontz, senior editor

June 15, 2010 at 2:15 pm 1 comment

Alan Furst in the NYT Travel Section

Alan FurstThe cover story of the Travel section in today’s New York Times has a pretty nice Penn State connection.

It’s a look at the city of Warsaw—how charismatic it was in the days before World War II, how thoroughly it was battered during the war, and how it was rebuilt in the years afterward.

The basis for the Times’ article is the novel by Alan Furst ’67g, The Spies of Warsaw, which was released in paperback earlier this summer. (We profiled Furst, a Penn State Alumni Fellow, in May-June 2008 issue, when the hardcover version of the book was published.)

“[T]he setting for his spies’ intrigues—the leafy boulevards, grand ballrooms, romantic cafes, lively salons and sinister back streets of a city on the cusp of catastrophe—is vividly rendered,” according to the Times article.

Despite the rebuilding efforts, “[T]he Warsaw of old is gone forever. And it is that lost city, the grand, glittering and vibrant prewar capital, that Mr. Furst conjures in The Spies of Warsaw. In his city, the Warsaw of memory is in the present, and the future ticks ominously on every page.”

Tina Hay, editor

September 13, 2009 at 9:38 am Leave a comment

Alan Furst on my iPhone?

alan_furstI love my new iPhone, but I’m not sure I’m quite ready to use it to read books just yet. Still, several traditional book publishers apparently are banking on this as a new market for their work. A story in Publishers Weekly and other news media says Penguin and Random House are the latest to offer books via iPhone. Among the authors whose work Random House is making available is none other than Alan Furst ’67g, the mystery novelist whom we profiled in the magazine in May-June. His latest book, released right around the time our story appeared, is The Spies of Warsaw.

Tina Hay, editor

December 11, 2008 at 1:33 pm Leave a comment

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