I love this modern espionage thriller, involving the British Secret Service, Cold War opponents and the never failing but always faulty Old Boys’ network.
Wow! This was my first Angie Smith book and what an enjoyable and fascinating read! A spy story with a twist that drew me in completely, reliving the old days where the British Intelligence and her Cold War opponents were scheming and plotting with daring and dangerous actions on both sides. At the outset, we meet Taylor, certain of the fact she is about to be killed by the man approaching her and wondering how on earth she could have imagined escaping her vicious husband Charles Hudson. Then the stranger lays his plans before her and Taylor has never heard a more incredulous story. Little does she know that it is only the beginning of her nightmare, as she is about to become a pawn in a deadly game of spies.
From the outset, we become aware, as is everyone in the British Secret Service, that Charles Hudson and his deputy (the repulsive Rudi Opperman) are vicious dark criminals. Opperman was responsible for the death of the Hudsons’ housekeeper who succumbed to his sadistic torture. Opperman is vile enough to circulate a recording of these atrocious events and show it to whoever needs warning off. Now the stranger, who calls himself Daniel Shepherd, has found Taylor in Africa and is staging the scene for her murder, he needs to keep her safe from her husband while he infiltrates into Hudson’s organisation. Who Shepherd answers to is unclear so far but it is someone high up in British Intelligence. Thomas McIntosh, a senior member of the Secret Agency and who survived a hit-and-run, has been deliberately kept completely in the dark. McIntosh receives an anonymous message to contact his former boss Faulkner-Brown.
Faulkner-Brown was forced out of the Secret Service some time ago but still, has access to inside information. He is able to tell McIntosh the focus of any Intelligence action should lie in Africa because not only is it where Taylor supposedly has been murdered, but also where Hudson and Opperman conduct their dirty business. Then there is a Russian female spy, high on the to-capture list of the British Intelligence who have sent out Pascal to track her down. As Pascal reports back to her superior, McIntosh, both of them realise they need help. Trust him or not, now they need Faulkner-Brown’s input. The espionage games reach another level when people’s lives both in Africa as in Britain are endangered and Taylor’s cover might be compromised, which in turn would blow Shepherd’s cover. When they have no idea who they can trust, will they be able to unravel the ingenious plots and bring the criminals to justice?
Exciting, enthralling, entertaining – I totally fell in love with this espionage thriller! The author has woven an intricate tale with a feel of the Cold War and the rivalry and deviousness between the various Agencies in Britain as well as internationally. The only thing I disliked was what happened to the housekeeper. Her fate returns to mind like a thread weaving through the excitement of the story, necessary to inform the reader of the undiluted evil the protagonists face. This thriller has all the ingredients that make it a perfect espionage thriller and it captures you until the very end. The author writes excellently in an entertaining style with a touch of humour and well-described characters. The intriguing title with its satiric undertone caught me and I am so glad it did – now I have found a new author to add to my favourites! I look forward to reading more books by this author and can highly recommend this espionage thriller!
About the Author
Angie Smith was born in Doncaster and educated at Huddersfield University where she graduated with a First Class Honours Degree in Education and Training. After a long career in adult education, training and performance management she retired early to pursue other ventures. She travels extensively and was nominated for an award on her knowledge transfer partnerships work, during which she co-produced and presented a journal article at the International Social Work Conference in Durban. Unfortunately, in 2013 she was diagnosed with breast cancer and, following a year of extensive and gruelling treatment, her desire to write was rekindled. Her highly acclaimed CXVI Trilogy inspired the creation of her fourth novel, The Spy Who Chipped The China Teacup. She currently lives in West Yorkshire with her husband, youngest son and two dogs.
|Publisher||Bloodhound Books (13 May 2017)|