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Publisher's Summary

The very funny true story of three children recruited by their parents to work for ASIO in the 1950s.

Growing up in the 1950s, the three Doherty children were trained by their parents to memorise car number plates, to spot unusual behaviour on the street and most important of all, to avoid drawing attention to themselves.

The children became unwitting foot soldiers in Australia's battle against Soviet infiltration in the Cold War. They attended political rallies, stood watch on houses owned by communist sympathisers and infiltrated the UFO Society. In 1956 the Doherty family went on a beach holiday with Vladimir and Evdokia Petrov, the famous Soviet defectors who were hiding from Soviet assassins.

Dudley and Joan Doherty swore their children to secrecy, and for decades, they didn't even discuss among themselves the work they did for ASIO.

With My Little Eye is a poignant and very funny account of a peculiar childhood in 1950s suburban Australia.

Sandra Hogan is a journalist, writer, reviewer and business writing teacher.

©2021 Sandra Hogan (P)2021 W F Howes

Critic Reviews

"Hilarious, moving and brilliantly told." (Susan Johnson)

"An intimate and compelling look at an ordinary family who happen to be ASIO agents." (Kristina Olsson) 

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What listeners say about With My Little Eye

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  • Overall
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Espionage Brilliance!!

Not being a 'natural' reader, it's only been in recent months that I've tried Audiobooks, wanting to 'read' a series of true life stories with humour interspersed. Anything else, I viewed as 'probably a hard slog'.

What led me to purchasing this Audiobook was hearing a few days ago, about this family in "Conversations" on ABC Radio. The Author was being interviewed about this book, the story of a family of Australian Spies. It grabbed my attention & within a couple of days had downloaded the Audiobook.

Being about a family of Spies was different to the normal, individual Spy. Fascinating was how a husband became a Spy, 'recruited his wife, then as they had children, had to decide how their 'little ones' should fit into their lives of espionage.

Anyone who likes Spy themes, true stories and family stories, I think would enjoy this book & would highly recommend it to such people. It's a book with titbits of humour interspersed, intrigue with a twist and the story of how a family had to adapt to 'normal' life after the Spy life ended. Thoroughly brilliant!

1 person found this helpful

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interesting read

interesting read, great story, wonderfully narrated. an intriguing lol at your things used too happen

1 person found this helpful

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Really fascinating listen!

Would never have believed this story to be true! What a fascinating and and at times hilarious story. The authors style is really engaging. Would highly recommend.

1 person found this helpful

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Fantastic listening!!!

What a fascinating story. Eagerly awaiting this author's next novel. A truly great first novel.

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Fascinating story, very poorly told

My Bookclub read this book recently and we all (10 of us) had very similar opinions about it, so this is a summary.

This is a very interesting story and it sparks several of the group to want to research ASIO further, however we all agreed it is very poorly written. We were very disappointed with how the story is told and, in particular, some of the conclusions the author reached which seemed very disrespectful. I hope one of the family members decided to write their own story.

This family experienced some very difficult times and some details given are shocking, and I don't feel the writer handles these in an appropriate and sensitive manner. The narration is ok, it's a little bit like someone reading a storybook to children, which is incredibly inappropriate for some of the material.

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I love this

I love this book, it’s amazing. An all happening in our own backyard. Makes me wish I had followed my dream and joined ASIO

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loved it

story was enlightening. narrator was ok, maybe a little bland. but I really loved this interesting information about this time in our history

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Fascinating

Interesting and fascinating, I never would have thought this was life in Australia. It is great that the family can finally tell their story. Narrator was easy to listen to, with the exception of the voice used to quote a male.

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Finished this in one sitting!!!

This novel was a well thought-out and well-structured listen. I finished it in one sitting- it's so hard to find original content on this level. I can't wait for the next book!

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Brilliant debut novel

While this gripping true story is stranger than fiction, it’s impossible not to be drawn in by the witty, incisive prose of the author. A brilliant debut novel about a previously untold piece of ASIO spy history

In the spirit of reconciliation, Audible Australia acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.