Britain was on the verge of defeat to Nazi Germany when William Stephenson arrived in the US with instructions from the head of MI6 to secure aid for Britain and ‘organise’ American public opinion: a May 1940 Gallup Survey: Do you think the United States should declare war on Germany and send our army and navy abroad to fight? Yes 7% Sunday Times and New York Times best selling author Henry Hemming, who entertained a Chipping Campden audience with his presentation of MI5’s Greatest Spymaster* in 2018, uses story telling, props, music and an audience game to demonstrate how, in the months leading up to Pearl Harbor, a first time M16 spymaster, a failed American politician, a love struck lyricist and the President of the United States used a fake Nazi map to help bring America into the war. Henry accessed private and hitherto classified documents including the diaries of his own grandparents, who worked for William Stephenson – “our man in New York”– in the writing of this. It has been optioned by the team behind the Oscar winning The Favourite.
‘Superbly researched and written with gripping fluency, this lost secret of World War II espionage finally has its expert chronicler.’ William Boyd
‘Fast-paced … reads like the film script of a 1940s thriller’. Times
Henry Hemming has written for the Sunday Times, Daily Telegraph, Times, Economist, FT Magazine, Wall Street Journal and Washington Post. He has given interviews on Radio 4’s Today Programme and NBC’s Today Show. His other books include *M, Misadventure in the Middle East and Churchill’s Iceman.