A DIVIDED SPY by Charles Cumming

A DIVIDED SPY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A British agent lures a closeted Russian superspy into the open by befriending his spurned secret lover.

Dedicated MI6 agent Thomas Kell (A Colder War, 2014, etc.) receives an intriguing call from freelance intelligence operative Harold Mowbray, who worked with him on a failed mission in which Russian spy Alexander Minasian turned CIA mole Ryan Kleckner into a double agent and benefited when Kleckner funneled many valuable Western secrets to Moscow. Now that Mowbray’s stumbled upon the juicy information that Minasian’s just ended an affair with German architect Bernhard Riedle, Kell sees an opportunity for sweet revenge. Backed by his handler, Amelia, he undertakes a complex and dangerous plan to befriend the German. He hires two men to stage a fake mugging of Riedle and comes to his rescue. The two men stay up late, talking together far into the night. Riedle bares his soul, referring to his Russian lover as Dmitri. MI6, monitoring Riedle’s communication with Minasian, learns that he plans a visit to square things with Riedle. The arrival of Minasian’s wife, Svetlana Eremenko, in London further complicates the operation. A daring and completely unexpected attack changes everything, raising the stakes and placing Kell in a perilous position. Shahid Khan, a menacing Egyptian whose movements have been peppered throughout the narrative in short chapters, arrives in London and promptly assumes a more central role.

The prolific Cumming insufficiently preps the reader on the hero’s back story but writes with ruefully brittle intelligence and keeps the twists coming.

Pub Date: Feb. 14th, 2017
ISBN: 978-1-250-02104-5
Page count: 368pp
Publisher: St. Martin's
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 15th, 2016




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