Please join the Intelligence Project for a discussion with Ben MacIntyre on his latest book, Agent Sonya. This true-life spy story is a masterpiece about the Soviet intelligence officer code-named “Sonya.” Over the course of her career, she was hunted by the Chinese, the Japanese, the Nazis, MI5, MI6, and the FBI—and she evaded them all. Her story reflects the great ideological clash of the twentieth century—between Communism, Fascism, and Western democracy—and casts new light on the spy battles and shifting allegiances of our own times.

With unparalleled access to Sonya’s diaries and correspondence and never-before-seen information on her clandestine activities, Macintyre has conjured a page-turning history of a legendary secret agent, a woman who influenced the course of the Cold War and helped plunge the world into a decades-long standoff between nuclear superpowers.

Ben Macintyre has written a weekly column in The Times since 1998 on history, espionage, art, politics and foreign affairs. Before taking up his current post as Writer at Large and Associate Editor on the newspaper, he was the editor of The Times Weekend Review, a weekly supplement covering the arts and literature.  He joined the newspaper in 1992 as New York Correspondent, and went on to become Paris Bureau Chief and then US Editor, based in Washington, before returning to the UK in 2002 as parliamentary sketch-writer.

He is the author of thirteen non-fiction history books, including the bestselling wartime trilogy Agent Zigzag, Operation Mincemeat and Double CrossOperation Mincemeat, shortlisted for the National Book Awards, was the number one Sunday Times bestseller in hardback and paperback, remaining in the top ten for 21 weeks.  A Spy Among Friends was also a number one bestseller, as was SAS: Rogue Heroes, which remained in the top ten paperback bestseller chart for 15 weeks.  His last six books have each been New York Times and Sunday Times bestsellers.   The Spy and the Traitor (2018), was described by John le Carré as “The best true spy story I have ever read.”  Agent Sonya (2020)

Ben Macintyre’s books have sold more than two million copies worldwide, and have been translated into more than 25 languages.