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Britain, standing alone since Dunkirk; Russia, on the brink of entering the war; America, struggling to stay neutral.
And in Germany, after ten years spying for the Americans, Wolfgang Stahl disappears during a Berlin air raid.
The Germans think he's dead. The British know he's not. But where is he? MI6 convince US Intelligence that Stahl will head for London, and so recruit England's first reluctant ally into a 'plain clothes partnership'.
Captain Cal Cormack, a shy American 'aristocrat', is teamed with Chief Inspector Stilton of Stepney, fat, fifty, and convivial, and between them they scour London, a city awash with spivs and refugees.
But then things start to go terribly wrong and, ditched by MI6 and disowned by his embassy, Cal is introduced to his one last hope - Sgt Troy of Scotland Yard . . .
About the Author
John Lawton was a TV producer, and is now a full-time writer. He is the author of the Detective-Sergeant Troy series of crime novels. He lives in a hilltop village in the Derbyshire Pennines.
Posted to the American embassy in London in 1941, Captain Calvin M Cormack III finds himself precipitated into the war in Europe ahead of his country and into the wanton arms of the luscious Kitty ahead of the watchful eye of her father, and Cormack's friend, Chief Inspector Walter Stilton of Special Branch. In the aftermath of Hess's flight to Scotland and the disappearance of a high ranking German double agent that he was running, Cormack finds himself dodging a lot more than bombs in the blackout. Forced to team up with Kitty's ex and sometimes current lover, Sergeant Troy of Scotland Yard, whose deductive capabilities rival Holmes at his best, Cormack struggles to get to grips with a country whose people speak a strange dialect, whose tailors practice a peculiar form of sartorial sadism and whose culinary plight is worthy of nomination as a war crime in its own right. Riptide is a glorious combination of fact and fiction. Real events and people rub along with a splendid cast of spooks and solid London coppers. Lawton steers just clear of parody, mixing broad caricatures with meticulous detail worthy of Le Carre and derring-do that would not put Ian Fleming to shame. There is even a guest appearance by HG Wells! Although the names - Stilton, Onions, Ruthven etc - tend to grate and the comical Jewish tailors, Larry, Mo and Curly, are possibly one contrived joke too many, this is a glorious and energetic read and a welcome addition to the genre. (Kirkus UK)
Published: 1st July 2001
Dimensions (cm): 19.7 x 12.9 x 3.4
Weight (kg): 0.283