The Secret Adversary Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Secret Adversary

In the beginning, the ship Lusitana has been torpedoed and a stranger has given a young girl a packet contaning an important document. The stranger dies, and the girl, whose name is Jane Finn, disappears, and the packet is forgotten. Until, that is, a labor unrest starts in England and if the papers fall into the wrong hands it could prove deadly to the government. Tommy Beresford and Prudence Cowley (nicknamed Tuppence) know nothing of this when they unexpectantly meet. They go to a restraunt and discuss what's been going on in their lives since they last met. Discovering that they're both currently unemployed, they come up with the idea of becoming adventurers,"willing to do anything, go anywhere." After they depart, a man named Mr. Whittington approaches Tuppence, and he leads her to his office. He overheard their conversation, and he wants to propose a job offer to Tuppence. He wants her to go to France to a place called Madame Colombier's for about three months. When he asks her what her name is, she doesn't want her father to think anything bad, so she says,"Jane Finn." Immeadiatly, Mr. Whittington gets very angry and says, "How much do you know? And how much do you want?" Tuppence manages to get fifty pounds off him, then she leaves. She and Tommy discuss the situation at an expensive restraunt and decide to try and find out who Jane Finn is. The next day they recieve two letters: one from a Mr. Carter, and one from a Julius P. Hersheimmer. They decide to tackle Mr. Carter first, and he happens to be from the Intelligence. They tell him all they know, and he tells them about Jane Finn-and their adversary Mr. Brown. Mr. Brown is a non-descript man who is behind the labor unrest and is causing alot of trouble. Their task is to unmask Mr. Brown, find Jane Finn, and recover the papers. Now they must face unspeakable danger to do this, but it is a race for time. They enlist the help of an American millionare named Julius P. Hersheimmer, who is her cousin. Who will win this race? Will it be Mr. Brown and his organization, or three ametuer adventurers looking to save their country?
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The review of this Book prepared by Danielle

The Secret Adversary is the first of a small series by Dame Agatha Christie about the loveable married couple, Tommy and Tuppence. This, being their first book is an excellent one to start on- to set the stage this is all taking place before their marriage. The opening chapter is about the Lusitania and secret information given to a girl on board by a government agent. Then we get into the heart of the story, some time later, in which Tommy and Tuppence decide to become professional 'Adventure Seekers' and are called upon by a mysterious agency to retrieve the packet from the Lusitania Girl, with little to go on- the couple set out on their quest which leads to suspense, mystery, thrills and lots of fun!
The review of this Book prepared by Lilly

Chapter Analysis of The Secret Adversary

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Plot & Themes

Spying/Terrorism Thriller    -   Yes Cloak & Dagger Plotlets:    -   main char. spying/sabotage    -   stopping a saboteur/spy Kid or adult book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Crime Thriller    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   unemployed Age:    -   a teen    -   20's-30's Ethnicity/Race    -   British


Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   England/UK City?    -   Yes City:    -   London

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   generic/vague references to death/punishment    -   moderately detailed references to deaths Unusual forms of death    -   poisoning Unusual form of death?    -   Yes Amount of dialog    -   significantly more dialog than descript    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

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