London, 1956. A young woman has been found dead in a hotel in King's Cross. It looks like an accident, and Scotland Yard isn't interested in accidents. But Fleet Street journalist Gerry Blackstone reckons there's more to it than meets the eye.
Meanwhile, Oxford is filling with Hungarian émigrés fleeing the failed revolution. Special Branch, concerned there could be Soviet spies among the genuine refugees, send in DCI Jack McGovern to keep an eye on proceedings.
As McGovern plays spycatcher in Oxford and Blackstone hunts for clues in the seedy corners of London, a complex web of rogues, schemers and potential suspects starts to emerge: the well-to-do madam, the Classics professor, the East London crime boss, the government minister ... does it all lead back to the dead girl in King's Cross? Or is there something even more sinister going on?
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About the Author
My family was involved in running the British Empire in increasingly lowly postions sliding slowly down the social scale. They felt quite dislocated after WW II and my mother led a very marginal existence. Perhaps because of this she had me educated at St Paul's Girls' School, where I encountered a completely different world of the Jewish and non Jewish intelligentsia, and then at Oxford. Possbily because of the discrepancy between home background and sophisticated educational milieu I was extremely rebellious. I trained as a psychiatric social worker because of an interest in psychoanalysis, but throughout 10 years working in the field I was repelled by its conservative ethos and morality and eventually escaped to a polytechnic. But this time I was involved in Gay Liberation and the Women's Movement, which defined the 1970s for me. In the 1980s I became a lesbian co-parent and later a parent governor at Camden School for Girls. Beginning in the mid-70s I wrote a number of polemical/academic works about women, and then shifted into an interest in fashion and dress (I am currently Visiting Professor at the London College of Fashion, University of the Arts, London). For some years I was a member of the Communist Party of Great Britain, but am now a Green Party member. I am currently working on another novel and also on a book about the necessity of atheism.