The Miernik Dossier

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The Miernik Dossier
Coronet edition, 1975
The Miernik Dossier
Author Charles McCarry
Country United States
Language English
Series Paul Christopher
Genre Spy novel
Publication date
Followed by The Tears of Autumn

The Miernik Dossier (1973) is American author Charles McCarry's first novel. It introduces the character of American spy Paul Christopher, who would become a recurring character in many of McCarry's novels.


The novel is presented as a dossier compiled by an intelligence organization as an example of a "typical operation". Each chapter consists of a different form of recorded communication, such as agents' reports, personal testimony given to intelligence officers, transcripts of telephone conversations, written letters, personal diary entries, etc., creating a Citizen Kane type narrative where each character reveals different events and different perspectives of the same events.


The novel chiefly concerns several expatriates living in Geneva in 1959: American agent Paul Christopher, British agent Nigel Collins, Sudanese prince Kalash el Khatar, Hungarian concentration camp survivor Ilona Bentley, Polish UN official Tadeusz Miernik, as well as Miernik's sister Zofia, a Warsaw University student. When Miernik is reluctant to return to his native Poland despite orders to do so, Christopher suspects that Miernik may actually be a Communist spy working for the Soviets. Christopher is instructed to determine whether this is the case while he, Miernik, Collins, el Khatar, Bentley, and Zofia journey to Sudan to deliver a gift to el Khatar's powerful father, trying to avoid crossing paths with a rising Sudanese terrorist organization known as the Anointed Liberation Front (ALF) along the way.


The Miernik Dossier, Signet, 1973