The story behind The Seeker by S.G. MacLean

The Seeker is the first in a series set in the 1650s London of Oliver Cromwell and featuring Damian Seeker, an army officer in the intelligence services of the Protectorate. Seeker operates in a London buzzing with coffee houses, illicit newspapers, radical lawyers and royalist agents. When one of Cromwell’s favoured officers is murdered in Whitehall Palace, Seeker finds himself delving in to the world of the City, and the secrets of a diverse selection of characters – a wealthy merchant, an impoverished lawyer, a Dutch scholar, a Scottish minister, an itinerant peddler and the dead man’s Royalist widow amongst others – who encounter each other in a coffee house run by an old parliamentary soldier and his niece. The story takes Seeker from the vibrant heart of the city, via the university town of Oxford to the court of the Lord Protector himself, and in the course of the story, it is revealed that Seeker has a few secrets of his own.

The Seeker, like my Alexander Seaton series of books, was inspired primarily by place. The Seaton books, set mainly on the north-east coast of Scotland and in Ireland in the 1620s and 30s were inspired by places I knew well, had long been intrigued by, and whose history, architectural remains and landscapes I had come to love.

However, from an early, stage in our relationship my editor had been pressing me to consider sending Alexander Seaton to London. I had manfully resisted – I had no connection to London or history with the city. I knew little enough about the life of the 21st century metropolis, never mind that of the 17th. Eventually, in a fairly disgruntled manner, I agreed to consider it, but although there were plenty of reasons for someone like Alexander Seaton – a failed minister turned University teacher who does a lot of sleuthing – to go to London in the 1640s, I found he was even more opposed to the idea than I had been: he simply wouldn’t go.

I thought my publisher and I had reached a parting of the ways, but at about the same time, I noticed that BB4 was airing a documentary of seventeenth century London. It was presented by the very engaging Dan Cruickshank, and I was soon hooked. And then he came to the emergence of the London coffee house in the 1650s and I felt the old familiar buzz of excitement that told me there was a story here. I went away and started reading up on 1650s London, Oliver Cromwell’s London, and the new phenomenon of the coffee house in particular. The coffee house was an amazingly egalitarian institution where individuals from all walks of life, strangers or friends, would meet to drink coffee, smoke, and talk, and they talked of anything – trade, politics, gossip, sedition. Concurrent to this was the rise of the newssheet or news book – the fore-runners of our newspapers, and it was in the coffee house that people read and exchanged the news. The London of Oliver Cromwell was obsessed with news, absolutely buzzing with rumour, gossip and intrigue, and I thought a coffee house would make the perfect setting for an ensemble cast of characters to come together. Murder would, of course, ensue.

            I didn’t bother getting in touch with my editor about this – I assumed I’d been tacitly dropped – but I carried on working away at my idea. Then, a week or so before Christmas 2012 she called me and said, ‘How’s the book coming on?’ I only just managed to stop myself saying, ‘What book?’ Instead, I told her my idea, about the coffee house, the cast of characters, the murderer. She liked it very much. Then she said, ‘Of course, you’ll need to think carefully about the detective character.’ Again, I managed to stop myself saying ‘What detective character?’ I had planned that the identity of the killer would just emerge in the course of the story, and had had no thought of a detective character at all. So, at the end of the phone call, I pulled on my wellies and hauled the dog to the woods, racking my brains about what on earth I was going to do about it. It was a typically Highland gloomy, drizzly December day. After about fifteen minutes, we came to a point in the woods where the path splits in two directions, on one side disappearing between a tangle of whin bushes, and in my mind’s eye, through the gloom, I saw a figure emerge from the bushes and present himself to me. He was very tall and strongly built, and was wearing a helmet, boots and a long black cloak – something like a mixture of Darth Vader and Brix, Sarah Lund’s boss from The Killing – and I knew his name was Damian Seeker. Now, I was perfectly aware that I was not seeing this in reality, but the picture came to me very clearly in my mind, and I knew I had my detective character.

            The Seeker is quite different from the Alexander Seaton books in several ways other than simply location. The Seaton books are all written in the first person, from Alexander’s viewpoint, whereas the Seeker books are 3rd person, and show several viewpoints. Alexander is prone to self-examination, angst if you like, and is very driven by religious belief or doubt. Damian Seeker doesn’t do ‘angst’, and he certainly doesn’t do religion. Seeker takes his orders from John Thurloe, Secretary of State and Spymaster General of the Intelligence services of the Cromwellian Protectorate. He is a northerner, a Yorkshireman, utterly loyal to Cromwell, unimpressed by any sort of pretension, and brutal when he has to be. He has, of course, a sensitive side, but one that few get to see. After reading an early draft of the book, my editor and agent both agreed on one thing, they loved him, and wanted a lot more of Damian Seeker in the book. I obliged, but I still haven’t had the heart to tell either of them that he wasn’t part of the initial plan at all.


S.G. MacLean
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REVIEW : Path of Gods by Snorri Kristjansson

 

One of the most anticipated books of the year is here and it is a blast! Final part of Snorri Kristjansson's strange fantasy trilogy set around Norse history and mythology was always going to be good. When you build your story on rollercoaster rides such as "Blood Will Follow" and "Swords of Good Men" even a rethread of familiar ground would be an enjoyable experience but in "Path of Gods" Kristjansson has really upped the ante.

Story of the "Path of Gods" finds Audun and Ulfar driven by common goal. Our immortal couple are the only one who can stop the march of White Christ alliance that threatens the destruction on the North. They're led by King Olav Tryggvasson, a self-appointed leader and their arch-nemesis, who is having plenty of trouble on his own. Keeping peace during the times of war is never going to be easy and there're chancers everywhere just waiting to depose him. King Olav is truly horrific creature, succumbing to doing the most heinous acts imaginable to spread his religion. Unbeknownst to other, an old, forgotten evil is starting to stir. Some very familiar names from the Norse Pantheon make a welcome appearance.

Kristjansson's "Path of Gods" feels like fireworks going on everywhere at the same time. The entire series has been a gargantuan feat of imagination and "Path of Gods" provides a worthy final stop filled with heart-warming revels and blood curdling showdowns. It is completely bonkers, slightly strange, and such great fun. If you haven't done it by now, do yourself a favour and get the entire trilogy - it's truly unique.


Review copy provided by Jo Fletcher Books.
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REVIEW : Stallo by Stefan Spjut

 

Considering the tremendous success of John Ajvide Lindqvist's "Let Me In", it is something of a wonder that we're not seeing more Scandinavian supernatural thrillers on our bulging bookshelves filled with translated titles. Thinking about it, there's only been a handful of such tiles published in recent history, coming from either from those reliable stalwarts of foreign fiction Pushkin Press and MacLehose, and they've all been invariably great. Seems like those cold Scandinavian nights offer plenty to inspire authors willing to step away from the standard Scandinavian crime literature, especially those willing to explore darker and stranger recesses of human condition as imbued by myth and tradition. Stefan Spjut's atmospheric "Stallo" is a welcome addition to this sadly understated sub-genre and it is instantly an appealing read.

Nothing sets the tone for what follows better than this opening:

"The worm glued to the tarmac is as long as a snake. No, longer. It reaches all the way to the grass verge beside the main door. The boy's eyes follow the slimy ribbon and notice that it stretches across the ditch and curls into the belly of a grey animal. Its eyes are black glass and one paw has stiffened in a wave."

The story continues to revolve around the strange and unexplained phenomena. Ever since a boy disappeared in the woods back in 1978, him mother has claimed that he was abducted by a giant. Of course, no one believed her even when it transpired that a year ago, a wildlife photographer captured another similarly bizarre phenomena on film.

Back in present day, Susso Myren is updating her web page. She's one of those conspiracy theorists who believe in all sorts of dodgy stories including the Yeti and the Big Foot. His father, the wildlife photographer who 25 years before took that bizarre photo, has instilled in her a deep love for photography so when an old woman recount a tale of a strange creature that observers her house for hours on end, Susso sees an opportunity for a story of a lifetime. Armed with a camera, her ex-boyfriend Torbjörn and her mother Gudrun she embarks on an adventure far stranger and perilous than could have possible imagined.

The quote from Karl Ove Knausgård, which graces the cover page, is a good indication about what sort of a book "Stallo" is. Despite its magical and supernatural elements, it is a glacially slow tale that unfolds in layers and is best enjoyed when read slowly. This is my first encounter with Stefan Spjut's writing so I don't know whether this is due to the excellence of translation or just plain old good storytelling, but I found "Stallo" to be beautifully written with plenty of depth that keeps you guessing even when you think you've understood it all. As is often the case with Scandinavian literature, "Stallo" positively destroys the boundaries between genres and is a book that isn't limited by mere limitations of any particular genre. It's serious enough to be enjoyed by those looking for something more mainstream while strange enough to attract those looking for intelligent fantasy fare. "Stallo" is a menacing, atmospheric book that will occupy your thoughts for days. More of the same, please.


Review copy provided by Faber Books.
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REVIEW : Second Life by S.J. Watson

 

"Before I Go To Sleep" was such an unique book. It came completely out of the blue and made S.J. Watson's name as an off-beat author who can instantly grip the hearts of his readers. A successful Hollywood movie starring Nicole Kidman and Colin Firth followed and sealed the deal. "Before I Go To Sleep" deservedly became an international bestseller and won quite a few rewards. S.J. Watson is now back in the limelight with his new psychological thriller called "Second Life". Brilliant cover art clearly shows what to expect. In a similar way that "Before I Go To Sleep" did, "Second Life" is a about duality but told in a slightly different way which might not appeal to everyone.

"Second Life" follows the story of Julia, a woman who live an ordinary and slightly boring life with her husband and son. Everything changes when her sister Kate is brutally murdered. This is a new that shatters her life to bits. Kate and her have always been very close despite the fact that Kate has been living in Paris for a little while now. To make matters even complicated, Kate's son is being raised by Julia for reasons to complicated to explain now. Julia is disappointed by police's investigation and little by little decided to take matters into her own hand. After the discussion with Julia's flatmate Anna, she starts by exploring her sister's effect only to discover the other side of her life - a world of online dating and sex. As Julia digs more and more, her own life starts spiralling out of control and yet, she can't give - for her own and her sister's sake she must know what really happened.



"Second Life" is a much darker and atmospheric tale than "Before I Go To Sleep". It is an accurate portrayal of obsession and the need to put the final stop to a life that ended so tragically. As such, its slow and elegiac opening will be off-putting to those expecting a reprisal of its predecessor. Things pick up significantly in the second part while the surprising twist at the end will leave many readers gasping. However, I don't think "Second Life" will be even close to repeating the success of "Before I Go To Sleep" but that's not necessary a bad thing. Rather than repeating same trick again, S.J. Watson has decided to develop and to try something new. The result is a book that's much harder to instantly appreciate but once you do immerse yourself you'll come to realise how truly interesting and fascinating it really is.


Review copy provided by HarperCollins.
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REVIEW : S.N.U.F.F. by Victor Pelevin

 

A few months ago I wasn't even aware of the existence of the Russian Booker Prize but Victor Pelevin's superb novel "S.N.U.F.F." is already a fourth book that either won it or was shortlisted. Russian Booker Prize is a cunning concept that surpasses the idea of a literary prize. In a regime where the publishing output is carefully controlled to suite the government, Russian author have decided to speak through their fiction. These carefully veiled attacks again the social and political situation in Russia are hard to prove as often they're disguised as Utopian allegories which could go either way. "S.N.U.F.F." is similarly ironical in its dystopian depiction of current political climate.

Pelevin sets his story in a backward Urkaine (not to be confused with Ukraine – sic) inhabitated by 300 million orks. Flying above this landscape is "Big Byz" (or if you prefer "Byzantium"). A technological marvel in itself, it is a city that has around 30 million inhabitants. "Big Byz" controls the lives of those situated below through a onslaught of carefully orchestrated media reports and artificially produced conflicts and events. Blissfully unaware of it all, orks' lives are lead down the path predetermined by those controlling the media. At the heart of it all is "S.N.U.F.F." or "Special Newsreel / Universal Feature Film" through which Orks' emotions are effectively controlled.

"S.N.U.F.F." almost mirrors the current life in Russia. This is particularly evident if you read "Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia" by Peter Pomerantsev, a surreal non-fiction account of Pomerantsev's experience while working in Russian's media industry. Pomerantsev also clearly depicts what happens to those who oppose the regime so it is no wonder that Pelevin relies on allusion upon allusion to get his message across. Ultimately, the joke is on the Russian government because it seems that science fiction has once again become a vehicle for overcoming oppression and censorship. As such "S.N.U.F.F." is wondrously imaginative piece of literature that by far surpasses its humble premise. Obviously, there's probably more layers to it than I'll ever realise but interestingly enough, it works perfectly well even as nothing more than a good story.


Review copy provided by Gollancz.
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The story behind A Prospect of War by Ian Sales

A Prospect of War is the first book in the Age of Discord space opera trilogy. The second book, due in October this year, is titled A Conflict of Orders, and the third is A Want of Reason and will be published in March 2016. The trilogy is about a civil war in a large interstellar empire, the people who become embroiled in it, and the historical event which, more than one thousand years earlier, caused it. The trilogy sort of came about like this...

Back in the late 1990s, I was in a British Science Fiction Association orbiter, a postal writing group, with, among others, Justina Robson. At some point, I thought it might be fun to write a space opera featuring a group of unlikeable characters - which is, I guess, what fantasy authors later went on to do when they created “grimdark”. The background to my space opera was, I admit, a bit identikit, although I threw in knightly orders and an aristocracy, likely inspired by the universe of the role-playing game Traveller. In the event, I only got three or four chapters into my space opera before I decided it wasn’t working.

I was living in Abu Dhabi at the time and, some time around the turn of the millennium, a new book store opened in the city. On its shelves, I found copies of the first eight books of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series, so I bought them and read them. I’d heard a lot about the books, but I only read them because I was interested in discovering what it was which had made them so successful. I never found out. I thought they were badly-written, derivative and clumsily-plotted - although one or two of them weren’t too bad. However, reading the Wheel of Time did give me an idea: that space opera I had trunked, I could try writing it as if it were an epic fantasy…

But my space opera was definitely going to be science fiction, so I threw Frank Herbert’s Dune into the mix - I’ve been a fan of the novel since I was a teenager, although more for its world-building than its prose. In fact, for my space opera I wanted exactly that sort of deep history Herbert put into Dune. I also wanted my story to be timeless, inasmuch as it wouldn’t really date since, like Dune, its setting would be completely unlike the real world.

I spent a long time working on the universe for my space opera, and even put together an encyclopedia, which I briefly considered offering as a companion volume. Since I was “borrowing” from epic fantasy, I thought it might be fun to throw in a few of the genre’s more popular tropes too. So my ingenu hero would be a “peasant hero”, there’d be a “hidden king”, a “dark lord” and a “dark lieutenant”, the plot would roughly follow the “hero’s journey” template, and so on…

However, as soon as I started writing A Prospect of War, every trope I stuck in sort of got turned on its head or twisted out of all recognition. Happily, this only improved the story, so I went with it. For the trilogy’s story-arc, I looked to EE ‘Doc’ Smith’s Lensman series for inspiration - each new volume in my trilogy would reveal a deeper level to the conspiracy driving the plot...

But as I started writing about this conspiracy, I realised my personal politics aligned more with the villains than it did with the heroes. I mean, the plot was basically your standard consolary fantasy - nasty dark lord attempts to overthrow good king, but is foiled by a peasant hero with magical power - albeit in space opera drag. Except, a feudal space empire is a pretty nasty place for the bulk of its citizens, and the amount of privilege possessed by a royal family and high nobility I find deeply offensive. However, there’s no reason why I couldn’t mix it all up, have white hats and black hats on both sides - because after all it’s about motivation, about the reason why people do the things they do. In A Prospect of War I even have the leader of the faction fighting to defend the throne described as a terrorist by another character.

I like to think A Prospect of War and its sequels are more political that most space operas, that they interrogate their setting and don’t simply use it as an enabler for a story of interstellar derring-do. Not, of course, that they lack derring-do. I made sure to put plenty of that in. Space operas are pretty much defined by derring-do. In fact, I even dialled it up to eleven - I gave everyone swords. No guns, just swords. And there are battles too. Between armies, or with space battleships. And sword fights... Masked assassins... Mysterious allies... Equally mysterious enemies... A ball in a duke’s palace... An orbital city… A spaceship crash... An abandoned warship…

I didn’t throw everything into my space opera… but not for lack of trying.


Ian Sales
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REVIEW : Uprooted by Naomi Novik

 

There's no other way to put it. Naomi Novik, together with Stephen Deas, made dragons cool again. Temeraire was such a great series so far and with each new instalment Novik grew as an author, offering more and more in terms of sheer depth of characters and pure excitement of action. But while we all wait for the next and probably final Temeraire novel, Novik decided to try her hand at something new. "Uprooted", her new fantasy novel, instantly feels different and refreshing. While Temeraire was a globetrotting historical romp, "Uprooted" is more of a fairylike creature. It also has a Dragon but not one of a kind you would normally expect to get from her.

"Uprooted" is story that follows Agnieszka, a quiet 17 year old girl who spends her life in a peaceful picturesque village surrounded by forest. However, behind the idyllic appearance, the villagers are continuously on edge of the precipice. They're indebted to a Dragon, a 150 years old wizard who keeps the evil forces of the Wood at bay in exchange for choosing a village girl as a servant every ten years. It a disastrous price to pay but the villagers have no choice. And it's not like the girls are killed or worse. In ten years, girls usually return with a sack of silver and education, but no one is really sure what is actually happening as the girl leave the village for good as soon as they return. As the time of the next choosing is quickly approaching everyone believe that Dragon will pick Kasia, beautiful and feisty girl who is Agnieszka's best friend but when the moment comes unthinkable happens. Agnieszka is chosen. Unbeknown to many, Agnieszka has a gift - she has magic. The story truly comes into force when Kasia is abducted by something in the Wood and Agnieszka ventures deep. The last third of the book is one of those moments in reading when the story captives you so much that you forget the world around you.



"Uprooted" is a lovely, pacy magical fantasy steeped in fairy tale traditions, that is simply delightful to read. It clearly shows that Novik is much more than a one trick pony and that there's more to her craft than writing about Temeraire. Funnily enough, after finishing "Uprooted", I couldn't help myself but to start wishing that she would embark on these other works strands often because as I said at the beginning, reading "Uprooted" was such a different and refreshing experience.


Review copy provided by Pan Macmillan.
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REVIEW : The Long Utopia by Terry Pratchett and Stephen Baxter

 

Terry Pratchett was one of two authors whose loss I've felt tremendously deeply. I'm not ashamed to say that I've even shed a tear. I've never met Terry but I grew up reading his books and it is still hard to accept that his brilliant mind is suddenly gone. Therefore these last few books that are coming out are all the more precious. And yet, ever since it started coming out, "The Long Earth" series has been a subject of some rather harsh criticism. Mostly it was down to people claimed that they're being somewhat slow, slightly boring and just not funny enough. I suspect most of these reviews have been written by Pratchett fans who have never read anything by Stephen Baxter before. Baxter is another of by favourite authors but I have to admit that his writing style stands in stark contrast to Pratchett's. His works are usually completely dry, steeped deep in hard science and relentlessly realistic. There's not a laugh in sight. The entire "The Long Earth" format is pure Baxter. He's specialised in writing this sort of chronologies, which just go over the subsequent years, never fully exploring anything and leaving countless threads open. And while "The Long Earth" spans less than a hundred year, some of his other books like "Evolution" span eons. What Prachett brought to "Long Earth" were the characters. Lobsang, Joshua and Sally are all vintage Pratchett and I don't even have to mention Beagles and Kobolds. I might be wrong but I don't think that Baxter wouldn't be able to produce a character like that even if his life depended on it.

Having said that, some of you will be disappointed to hear that, being such a recent creation, the fourth installment of "The Long Earth", titled "The Long Utopia" is almost pure Baxter. We're at a stage of story when Joshua and Sally have grown old and lost a bit of their passion. They're world weary and just want to be let alone. Lobsang is dead although not in a way you would imagine. He decides to re-inventing himself by becoming a middle aged man and, together with Agnes, adopting a son Ben. The Next are also mostly gone, and while the space elevator is slowly being built, there's no mention of the Gap, Long Mars, or the Beagles. But this calm moment is not to last as the George's refuge turns of out be a host to another one of those strange anomalies strewn across the Long Earth. Anomaly allows one to step North and due to Von Neumann Beetles the fate of an entire Long Earth hangs in the balance. I won't spoil the rest of the plot but this time around the story takes the center point and both the Next and humans must work together to prevent the worst. And there's awfully lot of science, dyson spheres and whatnots. We learn a lot about the history of Joshua's family.



I found "The Long Utopia" to be incredibly exciting and perhaps the best volume in the series so far. Sadly, lots of those mad, bonkers elements are missing but Baxter has done tremendously well in filling up the gaps with science and engaging story. The funny thing is that even four books in, "The Long Earth" feels like it is only just starting and "The Long Utopia" only goes to expand that feeling. There's so many new and completely unexplored threads here that at time I felt that the series going go on for many many more books. I know that now the future of "The Long Earth" hangs in balance but I certainly hope Baxter will continue alone. "The Long Utopia" was a pleasure to read and such a welcome opportunity to once again experience the brilliance of the inimitable Terry Pratchett.


Review copy provided by HarperCollins.
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REVIEW : The Festival of Insignificance by Milan Kundera

 

Milan Kundera is a changed man. This is obvious from the way "The Unbearable Lightness of Being", "The Book of Laughter and Forgetting", or "Immortality" are different from "Slowness" and "Ignorance". Over the years he has grown weary and rather pessimistic. Humour is sadly often missing from his writing but "The Festival of Insignificance", his latest slim volume that can be easily finished over the course of a single sitting, goes a long way to rectify it. In it he attacks the most serious problems with a cheeky refusal to be serious and the results are often laugh out loud.

On the surface story is rather simple and charts the relationship between four elderly friends through a series of disjointed stories that explore the very essence of human condition and the unlikeliest body part, the navel. These episodes are not straightforward but are instead a heady mix of philosophy and history that requires a re-read to be fully appreciated. In Kundera's mind aesthetic is much more important that a self-contained plot and in a way "The Festival of Insignificance" acts like a summary of all his work so far. There are recognizable elements from all across his career and this short novel is both an epilogue and an overview. In short, it is simply Kundera that I love - almost unbearably intelligent author who is by far too clever to let it show.

"The Festival of Insignificance" is a subdued read that will be truly enjoyed only by his constant readers. I suspect the rest will simply be a bit confused but that's the part of the joke.


Review copy provided by HarperCollins.
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REVIEW : Fall of Man in Wilmslow by David Lagercrantz

 

There was a public outcry when David Lagercrantz was announced as an author of "The Girl in the Spider's Web", fourth part in the monumental "Millennium" series by Stieg Larsson. This was mostly due to the fact that he's best known as the co-author of "I am Zlatan", autobiography of Zlatan Ibrahimovic, one of today's biggest and most outspoken football stars. Surely, this Lagencrantz doesn't deserve to follow in the Larsson's footsteps? Well, if you scratch under the surface some other facts come to light. Lagencrantz was a notable crime reporter as well and over the 80s and 90s he covered some of the major crimes in Sweden, most notably the Amsele murders, a brutal massacre that happened in 1988 when a whole family was killed over a stolen bicycle. Also, Lagencrantz is a great author. He wrote a rather splendid biography of Goran Kropp, a Swedish equivalent to Ranulph Fiennes and "Fall of Man in Wilmslow" a fictionalized account of Alan Turing's final days.

"Fall of Man in Wilmslow" opens up with events known from history. On June 8, 1954, Alan Turing in found dead at his home in Wilmslow. The story goes that he killed himself with a poisoned apple as a direct result of government's persecution on homosexuals. Detective Constable Leonard Corell is assigned to a case but he instantly feels there's something more about the situation than it's initially apparent. He notices the chemicals and the similarities between the crime scene and the Snow White. Coroner quickly declares the case the suicide but that's not the ending for Correll. He becomes obsessed with Turing's tragic fate and as he digs deeper through his papers, it is increasingly obvious that everything surrounding him is veiled in secrecy. There's even some rumours about him being a target of Soviet spies' blackmail due to his sexuality. Correll's chase leads him to Cambridge where it finally all clicks together. But as the Turing's role in the war becomes clearer so Correll's life comes into more and more peril. He's become a liability. It is a cat and mouse chase whose ending you'll have to discover for yourself.

"Fall of Man in Wilmslow" is an atmospheric Cold War spy thriller which plays wonderfully with paranoia that was so fertile in that era and those horrific social circumstances that spelled the end of one of the finest minds in human history. It's a fascinating and well researched piece of speculative history that makes much more sense than, say, the version of Turing provided by "The Imitation Game". More importantly, it is a successful first step of MacLehose Press' rehabilitation of David Lagercrantz as a serious writer.


Review copy provided by MacLehose Press.
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