The ninth in the series and a very entertaining one, too. Ted Jeavons makes a welcome reappearance and Widmerpool becomes increasingly sinister as he ascends the greasy pole. Pamela Flitton comes into focus as a genuinely unsettling femme fatale.

It is set in the closing months of the war, when the bureaucracies are entrenched and all sorts of clerical and political absurdities unfold.

I laughed out lout at the scene involving the Indian officer and the bathroom.

Stylistically so good, it is a pleasure just to savour the act of reading.