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Looking for your next literary adrenaline rush? Or to live vicariously through a thrill-seeking hero/heroine? Have a look at the titles in our Action/Adventure/Spy section for the latest danger and intrigue-filled novels.
Gosh this a fascinating little book, I really did feel as though I was discovering a forgotten manuscript. Translators notes greet you at the start, advising that a complete text from the 11th century has been found and translated using cryptology. Thomas Woodward describes his life from 1066 when he was taken in after a raid and trained to become a spy, through to 1098 when he explains his life and the decisions he has made to his son. James Hutson-Wiley has created a simple diary-like discourse, Thomas describes the world around him, in particular, the trade of goods, including sugar, with clarity. Stuffed full of interesting tidbits I sank into this world and galloped through the pages. The Sugar Merchant surprised me, I thoroughly enjoyed my sojourn to the 11th century and found a fluid, absorbing and worthwhile read.
At the fortress of the eagles, three kings will fight... Uhtred of Bebbanburg has won back his ancestral home but, threatened from all sides by enemies both old and new, he doesn't have long to enjoy the victory. In Mercia, rebellion is in the air as King Edward tries to seize control. In Wessex, rival parties scramble to settle on the identity of the next king. And across the country invading Norsemen continue their relentless incursion, ever hungry for land. Uhtred - a legendary warrior, admired and sought as an ally, feared as an adversary - finds himself once again torn between his two heritages: fighting on what he considers the wrong side, cursed by misfortune and tragedy and facing one of his most formidable enemies. Only the most astute cunning, the greatest loyalty and the most spectacular courage can save him. For decades, Uhtred has stood at the intersection between Pagan and Christian, between Saxon and Viking, between the old world he was born into and the new world being forged around him. But as the winds of change gather pace, the pressure on Uhtred as father, as politician and as warrior grows as never before.
What? You haven’t read a Stella Rimington novel! Don’t worry, nor had I… and even better The Moscow Sleepers can easily be read as a standalone novel. If you are now feeling rather smug as you are already well on board this particular series then I trust you won’t be disappointed. I now plan to start at the beginning and read the first ten in the ‘Liz Carlyle’ novels as I trust they will be just as addictive. Liz Carlyle becomes embroiled in a case that appears to be fractured and confusing, gradually however the pieces begin to slide, one by one into deadly place. As you’d expect, Stella Rimington writes with a commanding pen, I felt in safe and secure hands as I sank below the surface into the dangerous world of international intelligence. An intricate web with a number of characters weaved together in the most utterly believable way. The Moscow Sleepers isn’t sexy, fickle, excitable fantasy, instead I felt as though I was in a completely plausible world, one that particularly at the moment, feels all too heart in mouth real - highly recommended.
A psychopath preys on lonely women and lures them into his trap using a dating website. But DS Imogen Grey is back and on the case as three separate stories unravel and we see the light in what is a dark dark crime novel. The fourth in the DS Grey Series, The Promise has big shoes to fill after The Teacher, The Secret and The Angel. However this is another banging book and can be read as a standalone if this is your first Katerina Diamond encounter. I promise you'll then want to read them all though!
London, 1570. The body of a “male child, malformed in the limbs” is washed-up in the mud of the Thames. While the Queen’s Coroner presumes him to have drowned, Dr Nicholas Shelby deduces that the marks on the boy’s body point to him being murdered but, since the boy is of no importance, no one cares, except for principled Shelby himself. When a second body is found bearing the same markings, he sets about discovering the killer’s identity, and it soon becomes clear that there are more victims besides. An exhilarating cast of characters emerge from the unfolding action, among them Bianca, an enigmatic innkeeper with apothecary skills. And so a richly suspenseful story of risk and betrayal plays out against a backdrop of political instability, paranoia and heresy. Fans of CJ Sansom and SG Maclean will surely be heartily satisfied by this elegant historical mystery.
The basis for KILLING EVE, now a major BBC TV series, starring Sandra Oh, written by Phoebe Waller-Bridge She is the perfect assassin. A Russian orphan, saved from the death penalty for the brutal revenge she took on her gangster father's killers. Ruthlessly trained. Given a new life. New names, new faces - whichever fits. Her paymasters call themselves The Twelve. But she knows nothing of them. Konstantin is the man who saved her, and the one she answers to. She is Villanelle. Without conscience. Without guilt. Without weakness. Eve Polastri is the woman who hunts her. MI5, until one error of judgment costs her everything. Then stopping a ruthless assassin becomes more than her job. It becomes personal. Originally published as ebook singles: Codename Villanelle, Hollowpoint, Shanghai and Odessa.
At first it is a nightmare. When the invaders arrive, the world as they know it is destroyed. Their friends are kidnapped. Their families are changed. Then it is a dream. With no adults left to run things, Violet and the others who have escaped capture are truly free for the first time. They can do whatever they want to do. They can be whoever they want to be. But the invaders won't leave them alone for long... This thrilling debut by one of the most acclaimed short form writers in science fiction tells the story of a young trans girl who must find a way to fight back against the aliens who have taken over her city.
'BREATHLESS, COMPLEX, AND SERIOUSLY HARDCORE - DON'T PLAN TO SLEEP TONIGHT' Lee Child 'A RIVETING PAGE-TURNER, A GRUESOME DELIGHT, AND A STUDY OF WHAT LIES IN THE SHADOWED CORNERS OF THE HUMAN HEART' Gregg Hurwitz, author of ORPHAN X Officially, Max McLean doesn't exist. The British government denies all knowledge of the work he does on their behalf to keep us safe. But Max and his masters are losing faith in each other. And they've given him one last chance to prove he's still their man. Sent to a military research facility to meet a former comrade-in-arms, Max finds the bravest man he ever knew locked up for his own protection. His friend lost his mind during an operation in West Africa. The reason? Absolute mortal terror. Max is determined to find out why. Ahead lies a perilous, breathtaking mission into the unknown that will call into question everything that Max once believed in. Acting alone, without back-up, Max lands in Sierra Leone with his friend's last words ringing in his ears: 'They're coming, Max. They're coming . . .' The Break Line is a debut dripping with authenticity and menace. Smart, unputdownable and packed with irresistible set pieces and jaw-dropping plot twists, this is a thriller like no other. 'A taut, razor-edged thriller, packed with granular detail and authenticity' JAMES SWALLOW, author of NOMAD
Oh, how I thoroughly enjoyed this feisty, entertaining, full-on read. Working mum Alexis returns to the office after maternity leave. She’s one of only a few women agents at Platform Eight, an especially secret part of Her Majesty’s Secret Service. She now has to prove she can fit motherhood around the male dominated world of being a spy. Alexis stamps her personality all over the prologue, convincingly setting the scene. She tells her own story in a fast, tongue-in-cheek, bright tone, and I immediately warmed to her. Firmly on side and by her side as she races through her first operation I smirked and chortled as I read. Asia Mackay balances the theme of working mum with spy just perfectly, and I didn’t question it once. Killing It is uniquely fabulous and full of attitude, The Nursery is next in what will hopefully continue as a series, and just can’t come soon enough.
Wealthy Canadian scholar Harvey Gotham lives in splendid isolation in France and is working on a book about Job. He loves his wife, Effie, dearly but she has taken to planting bombs in supermarkets and has joined an anarchist group. Here, Spark returns to the Book of Job, which had always fascinated her, and `the only problem' - the problem of suffering. Why does God allow it? A despairing and exhilarating read, The Only Problem is a masterwork. This is one of the 22 novels written by Muriel Spark in her lifetime. All are being published by Polygon in hardback Centenary Editions between November 2017 and September 2018.
Sunday Times #1 Bestseller New York Times #1 Bestseller The global bestseller - Origin is the latest Robert Langdon novel from the author of The Da Vinci Code. 'Fans will not be disappointed' The Times Robert Langdon, Harvard professor of symbology and religious iconology, arrives at the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao to attend the unveiling of an astonishing scientific breakthrough. The evening's host is billionaire Edmond Kirsch, a futurist whose dazzling high-tech inventions and audacious predictions have made him a controversial figure around the world. But Langdon and several hundred guests are left reeling when the meticulously orchestrated evening is suddenly blown apart. There is a real danger that Kirsch's precious discovery may be lost in the ensuing chaos. With his life under threat, Langdon is forced into a desperate bid to escape Bilbao, taking with him the museum's director, Ambra Vidal. Together they flee to Barcelona on a perilous quest to locate a cryptic password that will unlock Kirsch's secret. To evade a devious enemy who is one step ahead of them at every turn, Langdon and Vidal must navigate the labyrinthine passageways of extreme religion and hidden history. On a trail marked only by enigmatic symbols and elusive modern art, Langdon and Vidal will come face-to-face with a breathtaking truth that has remained buried - until now. `Dan Brown is the master of the intellectual cliffhanger' Wall Street Journal `As engaging a hero as you could wish for' Mail on Sunday `For anyone who wants more brain-food than thrillers normally provide' Sunday Times
This was a great crime story incorporating what seems like a bad mix of politics and religion in a way that worked really well. I found The Concordat a fast-paced crime story that whisks the reader away, taking the reader through Italy, Germany, Russia. The main plot of this book is set around the discovery of the 1939 Concordat (an agreement or treaty, especially one between the Vatican and a secular government relating to matters of mutual interest.) which was between the Nazi regime and the Vatican. As I read I felt that the author has researched the history well and writes a convincing story that contains well-developed characters and a first-class plot. This is the author's debut novel and I can't wait to find out what will be pulled out of the hat next! I would say without a doubt that this is a recommended read! Jane Brown, A LoveReading Ambassador
Let Bernard Cornwell sweep you back to Arthurian times, or into the heat of battle with Richard Sharpe. Sail the high seas with Patrick O'Brian. Raise your pulse-rate with Michael Crichton. Experience the adrenaline of combat with Andy McNab. Feel the clear and present danger of Tom Clancy's thrilling Jack Ryan stories... Live on the edge with Lee Child's itinerant hero Jack Reacher? Navigating your way through all the twists and turns of this roller-coaster genre can be an adventure in itself.
So, let us help you find your next fuel-injected foray into the fields of battle, espionage, danger,heroism and even history rewritten. From Dan Brown, Tom Clancy and Ken Follett to Wilbur Smith, David Gibbins and Stieg Larsson, you’ll be over the waves, under the radar, up mountains, outside the law, beyond help, dicing with danger, battling monsters, rescuing the stricken, flying through flack, laying mines, playing political parlour-games, conning Congress, kidnapping commandos clashing with conquistadors and crossing swords with Crusaders … and all from the safety of your favourite chair.