Charles Latimer is the unlikely protagonist in this classic work by legendary spymaster Eric Ambler. Latimer is a university professor turned moderately successful crime novelist. While visiting Istanbul, he learns quite by chance that the body of a career criminal named Dimitrios has recently been fished out of the Bosphorus. Latimer becomes fascinated by the extent and international flavor of Dimitrios' "rap sheet" and takes it upon himself to retrace the archcriminal's travels over the preceeding 16 or so years.
This project takes Latimer from Turkey to Greece, from Greece to Bulgaria, from Bulgaria to Switzerland, from....well you get the idea. At each stop along the way more disturbing information about Dimitrios is revealed. Before long both Latimer and the reader come to appreciate what a sinister, ruthless snake Dimitrios must have been. To reveal anymore might spoil the fun.
Written with understated wit, A Coffin for Dimitrios is well crafted, entertaining and, dare I say it, educational. Originally published 65 years ago, it holds up remarkably well. This is one novel of international intrigue you will not want to miss.