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Thriller set in Cape Town, Natal, and Berlin

2nd January 2018

Agents Of The State by Mike Nicol – thriller set in Cape Town, Natal, and Berlin.

Agents Of The State is a really exciting espionage novel. It involves various branches of the South African secret service, plus the business empires of the country’s president and his son.

Thriller set in Cape Town, Natal, and BerlinThere are several strands that all come together as the story progresses. In Cape Town, an attempt is made on the life of a rebel general from the Central African Republic. He lies in a coma in hospital, his daughter is killed in the attack, and his wife survives.  Who has tried to kill him – dissidents from his own country, or one of the South African secret service factions? Meanwhile, in Schiphol Airport Amsterdam, agent Vicki Kahn on her first government mission, is meeting an ex-South African model, Linda Nchaba, who has information on a child trafficking ring. As she tries to board a flight, Linda is kidnapped in plain sight. But by whom? And is the kidnapping organised by the traffickers – or is she being held for her protection? Vicki is supposed to escort her back to South Africa, but how can she? She is sent on to Berlin where she encounters a real life cold war spy with tales to tell of the murder of her aunt many years’ previously. But why was she told to see him?

Back in Cape Town, Fish Pescardo, Vicki’s boy friend (or is it ex boy friend), a full time surfer and part time investigator, is contacted by the wife of the Central African Republic general and asked to find out who killed her daughter and who left her husband in a coma. But why did she approach him (she said she didn’t trust the police), who suggested that she should, and does it have anything to do with Vicki’s mission?

The South African President decides to throw a major party, to celebrate the engagement to his soon to be latest wife, at the Bambatha Palace in Natal. His son, and all the other major players in our story, are present – one way or another. As invited guests (along with the good and great of the rainbow nation), as part of the security brief, or simply smuggled in. The story moves to a very violent, and very exciting, climax.

Agents Of The State is a thrilling read by a very good writer. I do, though, have one small whinge… I took the book on the way to a weekend break to Berlin. I did so because the cover features a picture of the iconic Alexanderplatz TV tower – and I imagined the book would be firmly set in Berlin. It is not. Berlin is very much second fiddle to the South African part…

Tony for the TripFiction team

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