Adrian Magson is the author of 15 works of fiction, including the Harry Tate spy thriller series and the Lucas Rocco French police series. He writes the monthly ‘Beginners’ page for Writing Magazine, which is the basis for his non-fiction book, ‘Write On! – The Writers Help Book’.
In this the second of Matthew Dunn’s Spycatcher series, we find Will Cochrane chasing shadows of an agent-running operation set up many years before by the only other graduate, other than himself, of MI6’s elite Spartan program, who goes under the code name of Sentinel.
MI6 have received information of a major threat – the biggest imaginable, in fact: that of the possible outbreak of war between the US and Russia, which will certainly draw in the UK and the rest of Europe.
The finger of suspicion points towards the work of one of Sentinel’s very highly-placed agents, code-named Razin, a senior figure in the Russian Spetsnaz (special forces). When Cochrane goes to meet another of Sentinel’s agents, a Russian Fleet submarine commander, to ascertain what is happening, he finds the man close to death and able to say only that Sentinel is the one person capable of stopping the killer carrying out his plans. What is certain is that Razin has plans to draw the two powers into open warfare by luring three US subs into Russian waters, giving him and excuse to detonate a bomb to cause an immediate response.
Exactly why Razin should be doing this is a mystery, but time is of the essence and it’s clear that he is in a position to influence the Russian authorities into taking the ultimate action.
Helped by a small group of elite operatives, Cochrane and Sentinel set out to track down Razin and eliminate him – the only sure-fire way they know of preventing his plans from being carried out.
Fast-paced and furious, this is a rough-and-tumble ride across some of the most forbidding territory – city and country – in Russia, testing the mettle and resolve of every member of the group, including three members – one female and two male - of Russian special forces who agree to help them. Each person is completely committed, to the extent that they know they may not survive what lies ahead.
For admirers of Matthew Dunn’s debut Spycatcher, this is more of the same, with no let-up in the action or the ferocious pace of the chase.