Agent in Berlin by Alex Gerlis

Agent in Berlin by Alex Gerlis is a top-notch spy thriller from a master of his craft.

With war looming the British set to work on a plan. Setting in place a web of unlikely spies including a Japanese diplomat the wife of a Nazi SS officer and a Luftwaffe officer.

The plot works and they discover the plans for a secret German fighter plane. They also reveal a devilish plan by the Japanese to attack the United States of America.

Agent in Berlin by Alex Gerlis is intense and atmospheric. Fans of Robert Harris and Helen MacInnes will love this espionage book.

The Financial Times said of this novel, ‘The first volume of a promising new series, Alex Gerlis handles an ensemble cast with panache’.

Spybrary Podcast also said, ‘An unmissable spy thriller from bestselling master of the genre Alex Gerlis

Superb photo by Levin on Unsplash

The Spy and the Traitor: The Greatest Espionage Story of the Cold War by Ben MacIntyre

The Spy and the Traitor: The Greatest Espionage Story of the Cold War by Ben MacIntyre is a New York Times Bestseller and was described as “The best true spy story I have ever read.” by John Le Carré.

MacIntyre also wrote Double Cross and Rogue Heroes. This book tells how the Cold War was helped in its demise by a Russian, Oleg Gordievsky who had ultimately learnt to despise Russia’s communist regime.

Starting in the 1970’s Gordievsky began working for MI6 passing on countless intelligence to the British. He is an incredibly brave man who eventually came under the suspicion of the KGB. Escaping Russia and certain death he lives in constant danger, even now.

The book was shortlisted for the Bailie Giffords Prize in Nonfiction and was also named as a Best Book of the Year by The Economist.

The Spy and the Traitor: The Greatest Espionage Story of the Cold War by Ben MacIntyre is a must read for those who love espionage novels. However, the tale told is more gripping and vivid than any fictional work!

Great photo by Killian Cartignies on Unsplash

Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie

Agatha Christie is the Queen of crime fiction. A superb writer who set the bar for crime, mystery and thriller writers to come such as Dashiell Hammett, Peter James and Brad Thor. The detective novel, Death on the Nile, was published first in 1937 to great acclaim.

Death on the Nile features the Belgian (not French) detective Hercule Poirot. The action occurs in Egypt and mostly on a steamer called the Karnak on the River Nile.

On holiday in Egypt, aboard a boat which is sailing along the Nile on a tour, Hercule Poirot is contacted by socialite Linnet Doyle. Linnet asks that he try to stop Jacqueline de Bellefort from stalking her. Jacqueline was a former friend. Linnet had married Jacqueline’s ex-fiancé, Simon Doyle. Jacqueline had not taken it well. Poirot does not work for Linnet thought he does try to speak to Jacqueline and make her see reason.

One morning, Linnet is found dead. She was shot in the head and her valuable pearls had disappeared. And so starts one of the most famous crime novels ever written. It has elegance, dramatic locations, history and intrigue while being peppered with misdirection. Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie is a superb mystery detective fiction novel. Well worth a read.

The novel, Death on the Nile, was made into a film in 1978 starring Peter Ustinov. It was again made into a film starring Kenneth Branagh and was released in 2022.

Photo by the supremely talented XAVIER PHOTOGRAPHY on Unsplash

Unsplash is a great site for top level photography.

See Glass Onion – A Knives Out Mystery on Netflix!

Written by Rian Johnson, you can see Glass Onion on Netflix. It is well worth the Watch!

It is a lavish production which has an outstanding cast including James Bond star Daniel Craig, Edward Norton, Madelyn Cline, Kathryn Hahn, Janelle Monáe, Leslie Odom Jr., Jessica Henwick, Kate Hudson and Dave Bautista.

This film was released in 2022 and is a murder mystery film with hints of Agatha Christie. Johnson had indicated that he wanted to write a whodunnit in the style of stories he liked such as Evil Under the Sun and Death on the Nile. He has done so with great style!  Glass Onion as it is known is the sequel to the Knives Out film which was released in 2019. Daniel Craig plays the role of super sleuth detective Benoit Blanc. He is tasked with unravelling crimes relating to the tech billionaire Miles Bron. The character Bron is superbly played by the talented actor, Edward Norton. This beautifully crafted movie was filmed in Belgrade and the Greek Island of Spetses. It has received great acclaim from reviewers and It was listed as one of the top ten films of 2022 by the National Board of Review. It also received two nominations at the 80th Golden Globe Awards.

Netflix bought the rights to two Knives Out sequels in 2019 for a whopping 469 million US Dollars.

I do not wish to spoil your viewing by giving away the plot. However, during the pandemic the billionaire Miles Bron holds a murder mystery game at his home, the Glass Onion, which is located on his private island in Greece. He invites several friends and the renowned detective Benoit Blanc. And from there the intricate plot with beautiful cinematography unfolds!

Owen Gleiberman of Variety said of Glass Onion that it is “a bigger, showier, even more elaborately multi-faceted shell-game mystery” than the first film.

See Glass Onion on Netflix and prepare yourself for a most unusual and visually exciting murder mystery fiction experience

Photo by K8 on Unsplash.

The Twyford Code by Janice Hallett

The Twyford Code is an exceptional thriller novel from the talented Janice Hallett.

It is published on Viper and available on Amazon.

A children’s author of international acclaim, Edith Twyford has left a legacy. The mysterious existence of ‘The Twyford Code’. A supposed set of hidden clues secret within her books. What the purpose was of The Twyford Code is unknow! Also unknown is what it will reveal!

Steve Smith knows about Edith Twyford and has done since an early stage in his life. She has left him haunted.

He had shown one of Twyford’s books with its strange symbols to his teacher Miss Iles. She was convinced that they held a hidden key to a code. Ludicrous? Soon afterwards his teacher had disappeared – her fate unknown. He was desperate to find out what happened to her and whether there was a link to the code.

Smith is not alone in trying to fathom and break the code. Others are obsessed with it – but why?

Only the breaking of the Twyford code can tell.

The Twyford Code is a mystery novel by Janice Hallett that is a fascinating and innovative read with a clever premise.

It is available as an audiobook, an Kindle ebook, a paperback and a hardback.

Beautiful photo by Elliot Andrews on Unsplash

The Passenger by Cormac McCarthy

A giant among writers, Cormac McCarthy’s novel, The Passenger, is a truly thought provoking book with hidden depths.

Bobby Western sinks down to the plane and finds a conundrum. As he fins around the sunken jet he sees the dead bodies. But one is missing. The tenth. Also he finds both the black box and the pilots flight bag are missing.

Passing through the American Deep South this enigmatic novel is spellbinding.

Released this October this thriller is a must read!

The Florentine International thriller by Tom Trott

The Florentine by Tom Trott is a true masterpiece.

A retired CIA man wanting a break with his past moves to Florence in Italy

Cain, having relaxed under the warm Italian sun for many years his old boss gets in touch.

He needs his help with what he says is the last job! But his former boss has done the former operative no favours.

Cain is drawn into a dangerous mesh of double-cross and intrigue involving his past, the Mafia and a whistle-blower of nowhere else but the NSA. Danger stalks his every move and he knows that somewhere – he is on somebody’s hitlist!

He is stalked by assassins and the Italian police and he cannot tell who he can trust!

Reviews include:

“I was on the edge of my seat, holding my breath. It kept me in it’s grip until the very last pages.” — Herding Cats book blog
“All of the action you would expect from a big Hollywood blockbuster, with a clever plot to hang it all together and characters you can’t help rooting for.” — Steph Warren, Amazon Vine Voice
“Non-stop action and drama, there is never a dull moment!” — Eastend Reader book blog
“I was on the edge of my seat, holding my breath. It kept me in it’s grip until the very last pages.” — Herding Cats book blog
“I read this in one sitting” — Rambling Mads book blog
“Recommended for those who enjoy easy to read, well written, fast paced, espionage/spy thrillers, full of action and intrigue, laced with tension and suspense, with a very satisfactory ending. A contemporary thriller with undertones of the classic about it.” — Between the Lines book blog
“Riveting, well-nuanced, and action-packed. With humor, snark, tension, impending peril around every corner.” — Books and Bindings
“Kept me on the edge of my seat. A brilliant story.” — Echoes in an Empty Room book blog

The Florentine is a wonderful read with an intricate and clever plot written by author Tom Trott. If you are a fan of espionage novels or political thrillers or of authors like Frederick Forsyth, Ido Graf, Harlan Coben, Mick Herron, Lee Child or James Patterson then this novel is for you!

A terribly sad day for anyone who reads or who writes!

Henry Patterson, author of countless novels including The Eagle has Landed, has died. One one the very finest fiction novelists of all time.

The Eagle has Landed is one of his finest novels. A story about a plot to kidnap Churchill by the Nazis. Via Himmler, a group of disgraced paratroopers are tasked with the near impossible task. A work of genius which translated seamlessly into one of the most iconic WW2 war films ever. Patterson published the novel in 1975 under the pseudonym Jack Higgins and the legend was born.

The Eagle has Landed is a work of genius from a grandmaster of the fiction writers world.

I chose to write in part because of the novels of Henry Patterson, Alistair MacLean and Ian Fleming and I owe them a great debt. Not just because they inspired me, but because they gave me great joy over many years. I only wish I could have met him and asked him a few questions. Though he inspired me to write, sadly I could never reach the level of excellence he displayed …but I can hope and try!

My condolences to Mr Patterson and his family. They must be very justly proud of that great man!

Hard Road by J. B. Turner

Hard Road by J. B. Turner is a great red from an intriguing author. The writer lives in the beautiful city of Edinburgh.

The fiction book details the exploits of a shadowy black-ops specialist named Jon Reznick. This operative is an complex character who’s wife died on 9/11. He is in the pay of the American government though the chain of command is murky. Reznick is tasked with making a hit which he has been told must look like suicide. It is well within his skill-set.

Reznick is wrong footed when he finds out who the target is and finds himself escaping with the target. The political plot has fascinating and unique twists and threats to national security. The book is masterfully crafted by this thriller writer.

Hard Road is a great introduction to the work of thriller writer J. B. Turner. It is available as a Kindle e-book, Audiobook and paperback on Amazon. Read this book and you will soon want to read more of his works.

Near Dark by Brad Thor

Brad Thor is one of my favourite fiction authors. His thrillers are clever, intelligent and written in a very engaging style.

Brad Thor is a #1 New York Times bestselling author and with good reason. Once more Scot Harvath returns for his many reader fans.

An enormous bounty has been placed on the head of America’s top spy. Why? The spy is up against it and must evade his hunters while he tries to understand what is going on!

Scot Harvath has lost those closest to him including his new wife. If he is to survive and solve the mystery then he must call on those who can help him or his life will be brief.

It is impossible to trust anyone, but he must if he is to survive. He puts his trust in the Norwegian intelligence operative and beautiful Sølvi Kolstad. With her help he may just live a long life.

Brad Thor at his finest!

When you read a thriller by Brad Thor keep in mind that the dangers and risks which play out in your mind as you read these beautifully crafted novels are as nothing compared to the true life bravery of the population in Ukraine. It is hard not to admire them!

Near Dark by Brad Thor is a must read!