The Len Deighton Companion, UK First Edition, 1987
This is a companion volume to Len Deighton: An Annotated Bibliography also by Edward Milward-Oliver. This book is many things: a key to the abbreviations Deighton's used; a chronology of all his first editions; a guide to the everything contained in his books from locations, characters, background facts, weaponry. It is quite simply a cornucopia of facts which builds on the content of the first book and sketch out a picture of the worlds created by Deighton. It contains a quiz on which the reader can test him or herself about Deighton's work.
Why it's interesting
This is a book for the avid reader to remind him or herself of characters they remember, to understand the facts behind the fiction, and to better immerse oneself in the unforgettable world created by Deighton's characters.
'prisons. The narrator escapes from a Hungarian one in The Ipcress File - to discover suburban London is just over the wall (a moment vividly realised in the film). Prison life is recalled by Ferdy Thomas in Horse Under Water and Bob Appleyard in Only When I Larf, is endured by Charles Bonnard in Yesterday's Spy to win the confidence of Steve Champion, and survived by Lottie Winter in Nazi Berlin in Winter. The most dramatic prison setting is certainly the Tower of London, used by the Germans to hold King George VI following the Nazi occupation of Britain in SS-GB.'
Deighton writes of Edward Milward-Oliver in the publicity blurb on the cover: 'Whenever I need to know something about my books, I call him. His detailed knowledge is extraordinary.'
Edward Milward-Oliver is not a professional writer. He is a retired director of a firm developing regional satellite systems.