A Moscow bureaucrat risks all to ally with the CIA in order to prevent the implementation of new Russian WMDs, from Dvoracek (The Prague Double, 2004, etc.).
In the Kara Sea, just south of the Arctic Ocean, a Russian submarine inexplicably loses its compass. Three days later, a monitoring center in Sioux Falls, S.D., receiving indications of irregularities in the Kara, alerts the CIA. In Washington, CIA veteran Lawrence Cameron, the head of National Security for Western European Division, is briefed about potential Russian chicanery. In Kirov, Russia, meanwhile, Dvoracek’s hero, Yuri Denisov, a comfortable operative in the Russian FSB, the retooled KGB, confronts the undeniable reality of the nuclear threat. Struggling to respond, Denisov finds himself caught between the decadent complacency personified by his officemate, smug, bearlike Anatol Budra, and the isolating indifference of his own soulmate Nadya, who wants to know nothing about his moral dilemma. Consulting with scientists leads Denisov to the same conclusion that the CIA is coming to independently: The Russians are preparing to detonate their nuclear weapon. Denisov eventually comes in from the cold, aligning with Cameron and his colleagues, but can he avert worldwide disaster?
A retro thriller written with clarity but no finesse or originality.