1916. Britain is deep in the grip of the Great War, spilling the best of its blood in Flanders' fields. Morale at home is low. But one thing is certain: war minister Lord Kitchener will see things through. So when Kitchener is assassinated by the IRA, how will the public react? How will British troops at the Front take it? It's up to MI5 to handle the situation, and quickly. Lieutenant Chris Hubert's suggestion of lookalike Colonel Henry Farmer staves off the announcement of Kitchener's death. But when "Kitchener" is sent off on a mission to St. Petersburg, it's in the interests of friend and foe to ensure he won't come back. Now, only Hubert and Special Branch officer Anne Banfield can save Farmer from a torpedo in the cold, dark waters of the Pentland Firth. The U-Boats are waiting....
©2015 William M Aitken (P)2016 William M Aitken
'Blackest of Lies' is a pacy and credible adventure examining the mystery of Kitchener's apparent death at sea in World War 1, a disaster which some question even today. Writer Bill Aitken supposes a plot by British military intelligence to cover up his earlier assassination by the IRA. From the start, officer Chris Hubert's ingenious plan to deceive Britain's enemies is under fire, and Aitken keeps him on the hop even as HMS Hampshire sets out on its fatal journey, beset by mines, submarines and deadly intrigue. Jack Wynters' narration of this well-crafted tale is mellifluous and companionable: he does a terrific job of sorting out the voices of the many diverse characters (a tangle of military tones and a posse of IRA conspirators among them) and he lends the proceedings a dignified period tone with nary a resort to pastiche. This audio book is a classy performance in all respects, with a vocal treatment that brings out the engaging qualities of the text, and is greatly to be recommended.
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