**A Goodreads Choice Awards Nomination for Best History & Biography**
**An NPR Book We Love**
A race-against-the-clock narrative that finally illuminates a history-changing event: the IRA’s attempt to assassinate Margaret Thatcher and the epic manhunt that followed.
A bomb planted by the Irish Republican Army exploded at 2:54 a.m. on October 12, 1984. It was the last day of the Conservative Party Conference at the Grand Hotel in the coastal town of Brighton, England. Rooms were obliterated, dozens of people wounded, five killed. Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher was in her suite when the explosion occurred; had she been just a few feet in another direction, flying tiles and masonry would have sliced her to ribbons. As it was, she survived—and history changed.
There Will Be Fire is the gripping story of how the IRA came astonishingly close to killing Thatcher, in the most spectacular attack ever linked to the Northern Ireland Troubles. Journalist Rory Carroll reveals the long road to Brighton, the hide-and-seek between the IRA and British security services, the planting of the bomb itself, and the painstaking search for clues and suspects afterward.
In There Will Be Fire, Carroll draws on his own interviews and original reporting, reveals new information, and weaves together previously unconnected threads. There Will Be Fire is journalistic nonfiction that reads like a thriller, propelled by a countdown to detonation.
Carroll (Comandante: Hugo Chavez's Venezuela), the Guardian's Ireland correspondent, recreates a real-life Day of the Jackal in this sterling account of a 1984 plot to assassinate British prime minister Margaret Thatcher. Drawing on more than 100 interviews with "former IRA members, police detectives, bomb disposal experts, politicians, officials, and friends and relatives of key players," as well as other sources, Carroll vividly describes the attack, which involved an Irish Republican Army operative placing a bomb at the Brighton, England, hotel where Thatcher was staying during a Conservative Party conference. The explosive was smuggled into the hotel and detonated by Patrick Magee, who, despite being on the radar of numerous security agencies for more than a decade, was able to check into the hotel and plant the bomb that came disturbingly close to killing Thatcher; five others died and more than 30 were wounded in the explosion. Carroll gives the definitive account of this terror attack, delving into the security lapses and placing the events in a larger geopolitical context: "For want of two minutes, or a few feet, history could have turned, and with it the fate of Northern Ireland, Thatcherism, and the Cold War." This is must reading for anyone interested in the history of the Troubles.