Paul Samson is living in London and picking up some extra work for a private security company when he is almost killed by a thuggish assassin while tailing a mysterious and gifted young employee of a powerful environmental NGO. The murder of legendary spy Robert Harland, the poisoning of billionaire philanthropist Denis Hisami with a neurotoxin in the United States House of Representatives, and a second attempt on Samson’s own life send him on the run to Estonia to figure out who is trying to kill him, and why.
Anastasia leaves her comatose husband Denis in the US to join Samson in Estonia and help him get to the bottom of things. Soon it becomes clear that Denis and Harland were running an investigation into a spectral former Stasi agent and her sprawling network of assets across industry and government in the US and the UK when they were attacked. Samson and Anastasia must tap into their research and expose the spymaster before any more people are killed or agencies compromised.
An astonishing and timely thriller examining the penetration of Russian assets into all levels of western life, The Old Enemy is a complex, breathtaking race against time from “one of our most accomplished thriller writers,” (Financial Times).
Praise for The Old Enemy:
“The bad guys in this hypnotically readable saga include a sadistic Stasi interrogator turned entrepreneur and a data-mining wolf in sheep’s clothing.”—Tom Nolan, Wall Street Journal
“This novel is at once an up-to-the-minute political novel about an emergent second Cold War, a timeless ripping espionage yarn and a continuation of the lives of characters who become richer with each appearance. It’s an impressive achievement and, as ever with Porter, told in an addictive blend of tangy dialogue and polished prose.”—Sunday Times (UK)
“Porter makes brilliant use of material ripped from today’s headlines—Russian cultivation of Western assets, nefarious data mining—to construct a riveting thriller, bolstered by a moving love story and a stunning finale.”—Booklist, starred review
“Anyone who has read Porter’s books knows he is a first-class thriller writer, and his latest, the third in a trilogy starring onetime M.I.6 agent Paul Samson, should bring him even more fans . . . For those who like their international spy thrillers shaken and stirred, The Old Enemy is the ideal tonic.”—Air Mail
Praise for Henry Porter:
“A sequel to last year’s ripped-from-the-headlines Firefly… This frighteningly realistic political thriller will draw readers comfortable with the darker side of the genre.”—Booklist, on White Hot Silence
“[An] intricate tale of international financial skullduggery… Porter handles every aspect of the complicated plot, including the labyrinthine financial and political developments and the romantic triangle involving Anastasia, Denis, and Paul, with keen intelligence and compassion. Thriller readers looking for plenty of action, excellent writing, and credible, convincing characters will be rewarded.”—Publishers Weekly, on White Hot Silence
“Henry Porter is one of our most accomplished thriller writers. As a Fleet Street veteran with an eye for news, he mixes current affairs with precisely engineered storytelling and complex, rounded characters. Firefly, his previous novel, set in the refugee crisis, was highly praised and set a high bar. White Hot Silence meets it…The climax of the book, on the bridge at Narva, the border between Russia and Estonia is nail-biting, with a poignant, Casablanca-style twist at the end. Anastasia is no passive victim, but also drives the story forward. Thriller writing at its best.”—Financial Times, on White Hot Silence
“Compelling… The appeal and force of White Hot Silence springs from its convincing depiction of settings and characters, its palpable tension, and the enduring bond between Samson and Anastasia.”—Wall Street Journal, on White Hot Silence
“White Hot Silence by Henry Porter reunites the characters from his excellent comeback novel Firefly in another mad chase across Europe.”—Sunday Times (UK), on White Hot Silence
“This second in a series (Firefly is the first) is a top-notch thriller peopled with engaging characters and realistic action. I’m hooked now.”—Deadly Pleasures, on White Hot Silence
“Nine out of ten journalists who write thrillers on the side should stick to their day job, but among the few who do it superbly is Henry Porter…Porter, who for many years served as the London editor of Vanity Fair, is a whiz at both character and plot, and White Hot Silence can enthrall even those who have not yet read its predecessor.”—Air Mail, on White Hot Silence
“[Porter’s] best book yet…Firefly is its own magnificent hybrid: partly a young adult adventure in the tradition of Huckleberry Finn and Harry Potter; partly a le Carré-esque study of an outsider spy ambivalent about the messy business of espionage; and partly fictionalised journalism, and an impressive rendition of the mass flight from the Middle East that was clearly heavily researched and observed on the ground…it’s possible to imagine it challenging for the Orwell prize for political writing, such is the power of its depiction of the migrant exodus. Full of poignant scenes and mesmeric action sequences, it may be the first novel to do justice to the phenomenon’s epic scale.” –Times (UK), on Firefly
“With its vivid portrait of the flood of refugees moving west from Macedonia, Serbia and Turkey, the book could not be more timely, and Porter’s sympathy for the dispossessed is as cogent here as his skill at sustaining narrative tension.”—Guardian, on Firefly
“A welcome return . . . Firefly seems ripped from the headlines and is both timely and terrific.”—Mick Herron, on Firefly
“Firefly proves once again that Porter is both his own man and the proud carrier of the flag first unfurled by John le Carré more than fifty years ago. British espionage fiction is the best in the world, and Porter is part of the reason why.” —Lee Child, on Firefly
“Firefly accomplishes what too few novels today even try to do: this engrossing chase story of terrorism, spies and refugees takes the reader through the realities of our current war-torn world’s innocents even as the novel entertains. This is an important thriller about the real world we all must survive.” —James Grady, on Firefly