Sarah A Smith

Someone to Watch Over Me

The Long Room

By Francesca Kay

Faber & Faber 291pp £14.99 order from our bookshop

Exposure

By Helen Dunmore

Hutchinson 391pp £16.99 order from our bookshop

Spy novels have a tendency to include the same ingredients: a miserable childhood, an Oxbridge education, an unhappy love affair, alcoholism, perhaps a touch of obsession. Francesca Kay’s The Long Room and Helen Dunmore’s Exposure both conform to type, and are none the worse for that. Yet while Kay demonstrates that convention is no bar to invention, Dunmore sticks close to the accepted formula.

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