As the lead protagonist is never named in these novels, there is some dispute as to whether "Harry Palmer" is actually the narrator in the last two novels. Deighton has himself stated that the narrator of Spy Story is not the same man as that of The IPCRESS File, and the narrator bears for most of the novel the name 'Patrick Armstrong' - although as another character puts it, "We have so many different names". Despite this, the books have unofficially all been linked together as a series entitled the Harry Palmer novels, based on the name given to the hero in the subsequent film adaptations. Encouraging this concept is that the dust jacket for the novel Spy Story, published in its first American edition in 1974 by Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, with a jacket design by Raymond Hawkey, copyright Jonathan Cape Ltd, has the following statement "He is back after five long years' absence, the insubordinate, decent, bespectacled Enligh spy who fought, fumbled, and survived his outrageous way through the best-selling Horse Under Water, Funeral in Berlin, and the rest of those marvelous, celebrated Len Deighton spy thrillers". Similarly, the dust jacket to 1976's Catch a Falling Spy refers to the novel featuring "Deighton's familiar hero, our bespectacled Englishman".
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