A bestseller in 1941, selected by the Book of the Month Club for a special edition and described by Book of the Month Club News as: “...an autobiography the like of which has seldom been.”
Richard Julius Herman Krebs, a.k.a. Jan Valtin, rose both within the ranks of the Communist Party and the Gestapo. Krebs dedicated his life to the Communist Party, rising to a position as head of secret service, only to flee the Party and Europe to evade his own comrade’s attempts to kill him. As a professional revolutionary and spy and would-be assassin, Krebs traveled the globe from Germany to China, India to Sierra Leon, Moscow to the United States where a botched assassination attempt landed him a stint in San Quentin State Prison.
From this spell-binding account of artful deception to gain release from a Nazi prison and his work as a double-agent within the Gestapo, to his vivid depiction of working as a secret agent within the Communist Party fraught with intrigue and subterfuge, Krebs gives an unflinching portrayal of the internal machinations of both political parties and both spy agencies.
Writing at age 36 under the name Jan Valtin, Krebs here lays bare a young life filled with idealism and devotion - disillusionment and loss - in a world full of revolutionary promise gone immeasurably wrong.
”An exciting, real book...”—H.G.Wells