The Spider of Sarajevo by Robert Wilton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The political intrigues of Europe in the immediate prelude to what would become known as The Great War has always held a particular fascination for me not least because of their complexity. This extract from the Archives of the Comptroller-General for Scrutiny and Survey covers that period and draws the reader into those same intrigues with thanks to the compelling narrative prepared by Wilton.
After Book 3 I remain dubious as to the claims by Wilton that the Comptrollerate-General was, in fact, a real organisation within the British establishment for centuries, but it also remains entirely feasible given the way in which Wilton has presented this particular narrative in a historical period with which I more familiar than in the first two books. The very nature of the Comptrollerate-General as portrayed in Wilton’s work means that the answer to its existence in reality will, I suspect, never be fully known.
That said, this book was a thoroughly enjoyable read combining a strong narrative with a superb rendition of the historical setting of the events that eventually culminated in the outbreak of war.
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