I am a genius and everyone knows it. I was born believing in myself and I could understand everything that people said – apart from that silly baby talk that people feel they have to do. Although I knew how to speak back I had an instinct to keep this talent to myself and practised my language skills when I was alone in my crib.
When I was old enough to walk I would creep out of the nursery and raid my father’s bookshelves. I would sit up for hours reading and taking in all the facts, figures and statistics that were encrypted in the words and lines of his novels.
My mother was always telling my father off for leaving his books in my room. He was baffled and thought maybe he had been sleepwalking. But there was no other explanation as to how a 6 month old baby could get out of her crib, walk downstairs and bring an adult armful of books back with her … was there?!
When I was 5 I became slightly bored of learning languages and military codes and came across a spy novel that my mother had bought for my Grandma. I pounced on it as the cover looked so intriguing. The guy on the cover looked like the man that had been following my father for as long as I could remember.
Mom had to let me have the book for fear that I would throw a huge tantrum and give her a headache and I gleefully carried it away to my room and read it all in one go, not even stopping to watch New News or Politics Today Tonight Tomorrow.
After that first novel I was unstoppable and couldn’t get my hands on enough of these books. It all made sense to me and it felt as if I was reading about myself.
The books taught me some new skills but mostly they took me away from my thoughts and to a place in my head that I liked to be. I think I was designed to be a spy, that it was a calling for me, my destiny. And of course, I am one now. And I write my own books about my experiences.
In my search for the best of the best of spy novels I went to our local second hand store for spies and talked to Bond, Michael Bond. At the age of 107, Michael is the ultimate spymaster and knows everything there is to know about spies.