1930-something: a professional hunter is passing through an unnamed Central European country that is in the thrall of a vicious dictator. The hunter wonders whether he can penetrate undetected into the dictator’s private compound. He does. He has the potential target in his sites and is wondering whether to pull the trigger when security catches up with him. Imprisoned, tortured, doomed to a painful death, the hunter makes an extraordinary and harrowing escape, fleeing through enemy territory to the safety of his native England. But that safety is delusive: his pursuers will not be diverted from their revenge by national borders; the British government cannot protect him without seeming to endorse his deed. The hunter must flee society, and he goes literaly underground, like a fox to its earth. The hunter has become the hunted.
Geoffrey Household’s Rogue Male is a classic thriller and a triumph of suspense. Described by Household as a “bastard offspring of Stevenson and Conrad,” the book is no less remarkable as an exploration of the lure of violence, the psychology of survivalism, and the call of the wild.
Geoffrey Household (1900—1988) was born in Bristol and educated at Magdalen College, Oxford. He worked all over the world, including Eastern Europe, the US, the Middle East and South America as, among other things, a banker, a salesman, and an encyclopedia writer. He served in British intelligence in World War II. His other works include A Rough Shoot, Watcher in the Shadows, Rogue Justice and an autobiography, Against the Wind.
"A story that grows wilder and woollier with every passing sentence...Short, sweet, and compulsively readable, we dare you to try and put it down." --Men's Journal, #1 on the list of "The 15 Best Thrillers Ever Written"
"The quintessential cat-and-mouse thriller. The plot is simple and unbearably suspenseful...Household boils down his narrative to its rawest elements, and the effect is gut-wrenching." --Playboy
“Household…helped to develop the suspense story into an art form.” –The New York Times
A “classic of adventure suspense.” –Los Angeles Times
"Rogue Male must forever remain a classic." –John Gardner
"To my enormous pleasure, I read it almost in one sitting and was gripped from beginning to end. The writing is incredibly clear and the action comes so quickly that it is difficult to believe how much happens in the first five pages...It quickly becomes one of the most vivid lone wolf stories I have read." --Conn Iggulden, author of The Dangerous Book for Boys
"The quintessential man-on-the-run thriller." --Booklist
A “riproaring adventure yarn about a man being chased by the agents of a cruel dictator.” –The Financial Times
"Rogue Male remains as exciting and probing as ever, and the reason lies as much in its incisive psychology and timeless crispness of language as in its sensational plot." –The Times (UK)
“Simply the best escape and pursuit story yet written, with lip-chewing tension right to the end.” –The Times (UK)
“Rogue Male is that rare literary species–a thriller which has lasted…Its title has passed into the language; you can buy T-shirts and mugs stamped with the phrase. Two films have been made…” –The Daily Telegraph
“A great book about an assassin who's a big game hunter and goes to Europe on the eve of World War II…It has the best opening page I've ever read and is not nearly as well known as it should be.” – Robert Harris, The Daily Mail (UK)
“And if you prefer your yarns more ripping, Rogue Male by Geoffrey Household is the rippingest I've read. Hunter becomes hunted becomes hunter again with scarcely a quiver of a stiff upper lip. Brilliant.” –The Times (UK)
“Rogue Male…has achieved deservedly classic status. It's an exciting story, told in a crisp, no-nonsense style reminiscent of John Buchan.” –The Mail on Sunday (UK)