When long-serving diplomat Alex Murray is offered the job of Number Two at the new British Embassy in Berlin - the previous appointee left under mysterious circumstances - he's delighted. Central both politically and geographically, Berlin is again the frontline of global diplomacy and consequently the embassy personnel are the most ambitious, charming and ruthless in the service.
From the outset, events are overshadowed by one looming crisis: a massive flood of refugees at the Russian border on the verge of overflowing into Western Europe is threatening the precarious balance of power. When a key figure involved with an extreme Russian nationalist leader appears, claiming to have information about this potentially cataclysmic situation, Alex must confront secrets he has thought long-buried and acknowledge, with the rest of Europe, that the past is more present than we think . . .
Michael Shae, whose fiction has bee praised for having an uncanny resemblance to fact, again reveals what lies behind the polite face of international diplomacy in this compelling and prescient novel.