An organisation that doesn’t exist.
A spy that can’t be caught.
Years ago, a spy was born…
1989: The Cold War will soon be over, but for BOX 88, a top secret spying agency, the espionage game is heating up. Lachlan Kite is sent to France to gather intelligence on the Lockerbie bombing. What he uncovers is terrifying…
Now he faces the deadliest decision of his life…
2020: Kite has been taken captive and brutally tortured. He now has a choice: reveal the truth about what happened in France thirty years earlier – or watch his family die.
In a battle unlike anything he has faced before, Kite must use all his skills to stay alive.
’A spy for the 21st century’ Daily Mail, Books of the Year
‘Wonderfully taut, exciting and up-to-date’ Spectator, Books of the Year
‘An ambitious fusion of coming-of-age novel and gripping espionage thriller’ Financial Times, Books of the Year
‘BOX 88 is so good. Charles Cumming is up there with the very best espionage writers’ Ian Rankin
‘A wonderful spy novel; Charles Cumming’s most ambitious – and his best – yet’ Mick Herron
‘Charles Cumming has breathed new life into the spy novel’ Ben Macintyre
‘Atmospheric and full of sharply realised characters’ Sunday Times
‘A clever thriller’ Sun
‘Intelligence, grace, and stunning verisimilitude’ Gregg Hurwitz
‘An engaging hero’ James Swallow
‘All the hallmarks of the finest spy thriller’ Charlotte Philby
‘Sharp-eyed and satisfying’ Henry Porter
‘A great new spy hero is born’ Amanda Craig
‘Ideal for anyone nostalgic for their first love and the whiff of Marlboro Lights’ The Times
About the author
Charles Cumming was born in Scotland in 1971. Shortly after university, he was approached for recruitment by the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6), an experience that inspired his first novel, A Spy by Nature. He has written several bestselling thrillers, including A Foreign Country which won the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger for Best Thriller and the Bloody Scotland Crime Book of the Year. He lives in London.
Lachlan Kite, the hero of this excellent spy thriller from bestseller Cumming (The Moroccan Girl), is a career man at Box 88, a joint British-U.S. black ops outfit so secretive that not even the CIA and MI5 are sure it exists. While attending a funeral outside London for an old prep school friend who died by suicide, Kite lets down his guard and is kidnapped by an Iranian team that wants information on a case he was involved in 30 years earlier. His pregnant wife is also abducted as part of the plot to pressure Kite into revealing his secrets. Flashbacks to 1989 show Kite as a green operative prone to professional insecurity, missteps, and major flubs. In the present, Kite's decades of experience as a spy provide him with the skills to turn the tables on his kidnappers during his interrogation. Between the two time frames, a thorough portrait of Kite emerges. Well-timed action scenes match focused glimpses into the world of spycraft. This outing cements Cumming's place in the top rank of espionage writers. Agent: Luke Janklow, Janklow & Nesbit Assoc.