Dead Lions

Soho Crime. May 2013. 352p. ISBN 9781616952259. $25.95. F
OrangeReviewStarHerron's protagonists live in London's Slough House, home to disgraced M15 agents; readers might have met them already in Herron's Slow Horses. Spotting a conundrum that reaches deep into the Cold War, these eccentric spies have a chance at redemption as they employ their quirks to unravel a twisted pair of plots, one cooked up by a Soviet spy out to avenge a historic atrocity by wreaking havoc, the other a fiendish plot to heist treasure from London's Needle building. The crew also battles the stifling MI5 bureaucracy, which gives Herron untethered leave to skewer the world of spydom with wicked humor and telling details.
VERDICT Herron brings a fresh and puckish eye to espionage and crime, leaving behind the stodgy staples. With zippy chapters moving among plot turns, superb drawing of oddball characters, tantalizing suspense, and smart-arse dialog, Herron delivers unbeatable entertainment for thriller fans.
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