The Tenth Man (1985) is the thriller which forces the reader to contemplate over some basic human values. However, no authorial intrusion is being made to teach moral values in the novel .In casual hints and remarks, Greene presents these values. Passions such as greed, self-disregard, love and lust are presented in the story through the study of human psychology. The story is a compact one which dramatizes the human cowardice and courage, vanity and selfishness, hypocrisy and selfless admiration. The Tenth Man is the story of a man changing his identity. Chavel becomes Charlot and has the chance to start again through humiliation, destitution, and through his love for Therese.
The Tenth Man is the story of a whole society of reluctant heroes whose lives are dominated by international politics, a society in which disguise and impersonation are made easy because of the toll taken on everyone’s faces by war: after six years of suffering everyone’s passport photograph is out of date. The novel is extremely evocation of certain atmosphere: particularly the mixture of fear of boredom in the prison scene and the sense of exhaustion and hopelessness of people reeling from the effects of war. It is the study of paradoxes. Like man of property, Chavel, has now total disregard for property, the criminal imposter who claims to be Chavel acts out his role more convincingly than Chavel himself, and moreover the cowardly man acts with courage. One move on one side is balanced by the counter move on the other.
As the thriller, The Tenth Man relies heavily on the conventions of melodrama, suspense, excitement, violence and the atmosphere of fear and anxiety. I read the novel in one sitting and read it umpteen times. You start loving the writing after its first reading.