FFON. Written by nature detectives.

The Frightened Face of Nature (FFON) – Inspired by the lost manuscript of the real-life 'M'

First time here?

This blog is inspired by Britain’s greatest MI5 spymaster and much-admired naturalist, the original ‘Nature Detective’ Maxwell Knight OBE – ‘M’ (1900 – 1968).

What is it for? It’s to highlight his most prescient work (The Frightened Face of Nature) which warned that more needed to be done to restore and protect nature.

Why bother? Today, our wildlife faces exploitation, habitat degradation and climate change – it’s time to take action.

Our primary interest is in Maxwell Knight the naturalist, who influenced thousands of young people and thereby helped build peace – and concern for deeper values – after the worst war that the world has ever known and we plan to share the forgotten/lost files of the real-life “M”.

We are aware that Maxwell Knight was Britain’s greatest spymaster and his remarkable story inspired Ian Fleming’s ‘M’. You’re in the right place to find out more about the man they called ‘M’.

Or, alternatively, try Anoosh Chakelian’s article in the NewStatesman:

Cuckoos, le Carré, and conservation: the forgotten files of the real-life “M”

Or Simon H King’s article in the Guardian:

Spectre of destruction: the lost manuscript of the real-life ‘M’


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