cover image Real Tigers

Real Tigers

Mick Herron. Soho Crime, $26.95 (336p) ISBN 978-1-61695-612-7

The disgraced spies at MI5’s Slough House must try to save one of their own in CWA Gold Dagger Award–winner Herron’s outstanding third thriller featuring uncouth Jackson Lamb and crew (after 2013’s Dead Lions). When one of these “slow horses,” Catherine Standish, doesn’t show up for work, her colleagues don’t initially worry until they’re contacted by kidnappers who say that they’ll only guarantee Standish’s return in exchange for information stored on a secret government computer, which happens to be in MI5’s headquarters in London’s Regent’s Park. River Cartwright, the hero of 2010’s Slow Horses, tries to infiltrate the main office, not an easy task, especially since the agency ripples with internal strife as the new home secretary, Peter Judd, butts heads with the Intelligence Service chief, Dame Ingrid Tearney. Soon the lines between spies, slow horses, and private mercenaries blur dangerously. Herron expertly juggles multiple plot lines and fully formed characters, injecting everything with a jolt of black humor. Agent: Juliet Burton, Juliet Burton Literary Agency (U.K.) (Jan.)