“Harry. Grosvenor Square, London, tomorrow 18.30. Urgent. Remember Mitrovica.”
The message comes as a stark reminder of former soldier and MI5 officer Harry Tate’s past service in the army, when he led a Close Protection team in Kosovo in 1999, guarding a United Nations official. Now somebody is hunting down and taking out the members of that team, amid disturbing rumours of a rape and murder committed by a trooper one night at remote UN depot. Harry agrees to track down the assassin. But to do that, he has to find out what really happened. Is it a terrorist attack or something deeper? Then Harry discovers that his name is also on the kill list, and he’s soon in a whirlwind race across Europe and the US to save the remaining team members and bring down the killer… and the man guilty of murder.
From Adrian Magson, author of RETRIBUTION:
The ideal when writing a thriller series is to keep things moving along. The same holds for every book, of course, where pace and action is everything. But no two plots should be the same, and as with previous three Harry Tate books, RED STATION (do spies know who to trust – and what happens when they are deemed ‘burned out’ by their masters?); TRACERS (post-Iraq, who are the real bad guys, and can bad things happen to good people?); and DECEPTION (what happens to the information in military deserters’ minds – and who stands to benefit from trading their secrets?), I wanted to take something from a real event to use as a backdrop. With RETRIBUTION, I wanted to explore the idea of revenge and of someone being made to pay for his crimes committed under a cap badge. To do so, I returned to Harry’s past service in the British army, when he was the leader of a mixed UN Close Protection team in Kosovo in 1999.
Having now left the army and served in MI5 (Britain’s Security Service), Harry is working in the private sector when he receives a visit from the American head of UN security. Some former members of Harry’s CP team have been murdered, and someone inside the UN has gained access to the personal details of every man who served on that team. There are also disturbing rumours emerging of a rape and murder of a young girl back in 1999, in a UN supply depot, and that a ‘UN trooper’ was involved.
The problem for Harry is that the atrocity occurred on the night he and his team were in the same depot. This is something he cannot step back from and ignore, especially when he finds that his own name is on the kill list. Worse, there are growing rumours of a planned terrorist ‘event’ in revenge for the murder, which will have shattering consequences for the UN itself and member states.
I didn’t want to write about Kosovo, because there are people who have done that far more effectively than I ever could. But the conflict there gave me the platform for the present-day events in the story. I focused instead on the present day, the man doing the killing of the CP team, his origins and motives, and the team members, who have all moved on, some putting their pasts behind them.
I hope I have managed to write a convincing and engaging story, and one which Harry Tate readers will enjoy as much as they have the previous titles.
“Outstanding… Suggests the best of Ken Follet or Robert Ludlum.” –BOOKLIST starred review
“A strong contender in a field long dominated by John le Carre and Ian Fleming.” –LIBRARY JOURNAL starred review
Adrian Magson is the author of 13 crime/thriller novels and hundreds of short stories and magazine articles. His latest titles are RETRIBUTION (Severn House ) – 4th in the Harry Tate spy thriller series, and DEATH ON THE PONT NOIR (Allison & Busby) – 3rd in the Inspector Lucas Rocco series set in the 1960s in France. A regular reviewer for SHOTS MAGAZINE, he writes the ‘Beginners’ and ‘New Author’ pages for WRITING MAGAZINE, and is the author of WRITE ON! – THE WRITER’S HELP BOOK (Accent Press). RED STATION (Harry Tate No 1) has been optioned by Benderspink in Hollywood.
To learn more about Adrian, please visit his website.
Interested in becoming a member of the International Thriller Writers? ITW offers Active and Associate memberships.
Latest posts by ITW (see all)
- October 14 – 20: “What features of a thriller by an unknown author would make you want to read it?” - October 13, 2019
- October 7 – 13: “Is it hard to start a new novel?” - October 6, 2019
- The October 2019 Edition of The Big Thrill is Here! - September 30, 2019