Judd, Alan - 'Inside Enemy'
The ex-spy Charles Throughgood is the newly-appointed chief of a restructured MI6 and married to Sarah, widow of his predecessor. They are entering a new period in their life. But instead of enjoying his new status Charles is faced with the burning issue of halting the increasingly disruptive cyber attacks on Britain which are threatening government itself and many normal aspects of daily life, and trying to solve the problem of a missing nuclear missile-carrying submarine.
At the same time two events bring past to the present: a murder of one of his former agents and the escape from prison of a former friend turned traitor, whom Charles had helped to convict. These eventually make him believe that all is connected - though only when Sarah is kidnapped do others start to support Charles' belief. As the story develops some matters become clear, others remain a mystery, yet all make sense. Charles' actions culminate in a dramatic ending where feelings and emotions are not allowed to surface but the reader can breathe a sigh of relief.
The author Alan Judd knows inside-out the world he writes about and so this thriller, in a classic spy style, is both convincing and gripping. Urgent quick sentences and fondness for acronyms emphasise the nervous atmosphere at the Whitehall offices - or at least that's how I felt reading through accounts of the secret meetings and descriptions of official and off-the-record summits. Politics and 'games' are intertwined and if you are in it, you can't escape.
This was my first meeting with Charles Thoroughgood and I was impressed. And you will be, too, even if you haven't read previous books by Alan Judd. And of course the clue to the personality of this very believable character is really in his surname.
Ewa Sherman, England