MI6 spy Nikki Sinclair is sent to a top-secret facility in the English countryside to discover who murdered two scientists on the streets of London.
The murdered scientists have one thing in common. Both of them were recruited from the Eastern Bloc. Suspicion falls on Eva Horakova, a newly arrived Czech defector. Then there is the intriguing Professor Irma Lange, a scientist who clearly has something to hide.
Nikki uncovers hidden agendas, deceit, deception and bizarre behaviour. Not sure who to trust or what to believe, Nikki is left with unanswered questions. She must discover the killer before another scientist is killed.
I loved James Bond! I’ve read the books watched the movies countless times. Growing up, I often wondered why a woman didn’t write a female equivalent to 007. Years passed, but no one ever did. So I created Nikki Sinclair, who’s an MI6 agent in the dark days of the Cold War. And, of course, I had to make her a lesbian.
These days, you’ll find me in a small town north of Auckland, where I spent my days writing the next Nikki Sinclair Spy Thriller.
My inspiration for the story came from Georgi Markov, a Bulgarian dissident who made London his home. He worked as a journalist for the BBC and was a vocal opponent of his country's regime.
In September 1978, Markov waited for a bus on Waterloo Bridge. He felt a jab in his thigh. He looked around and saw a man with an umbrella. Later that day, Markov felt unwell. He sought treatment and died in hospital four days later.
The cause of death - ricin poisoning. It was believed the KGB had instructed the Bulgarians to assassinate Markov because he embarrassed the regime.
I remember reading this story and thinking it was too far fetched and simply couldn't happen in London. But it had.
Murder By Umbrella (The Nikki Sinclair Spy Thriller Series, #4)
“The first scientist to die was Laszlo Mester.” Braithwaite glanced down at his notes. “He was a Hungarian who came to England after the ‘56 revolution. That afternoon Mester took the train to London and then the bus to Oxford Circus. He’d told one of his colleagues he planned on purchasing an anniversary gift for his wife in one of the department stores. When Mester exited the bus, he felt a sharp pain pierce his calf. And then, at home, he became short of breath. His wife called an ambulance and, adhering to standard procedure, contacted the facility. Laszlo Mester was admitted to Chase Farm Hospital in North London, where his condition rapidly deteriorated. He died twelve hours later.”