Iconic spy 007 must pose as a double agent to infiltrate a secret Soviet intelligence organization planning an attack on the West — and face off against a man who could be the most diabolical enemy he's ever encountered — in internationally best-selling author Anthony Horowitz's third James Bond novel.
The Soviet counterintelligence agency SMERSH may be defeated, but a new organization, Stalnaya Ruska, has arisen from its ashes. Under Moscow's direction, the group is planning a major act of terrorism that, if successful, will destabilize relations between East and West.
Returning from Jamaica and his encounter with Scaramanga (The Man with the Golden Gun), James Bond ponders his future. He is aware of a world that is changing all too rapidly around him. The old certainties of the early postwar years are gone. Disdain for the establishment is rising, and the intelligence services are no longer trusted. Bond is beginning to wonder if his “license to kill” is still valid.
But the threat to the free world remains all too real, and now 007 has a new assignment: discover what Stalnaya Ruska is planning and prevent it from happening. To succeed, Bond will have to make the Russians believe he's a double agent and travel behind the Iron Curtain.
First though, he will have to convince Sonya Dragunova, the Soviet psychiatric analyst as brilliant — and as dangerous — as she is beautiful. Sonya knows more of what's happening in Bond's mind than he does himself. She's also hiding secrets of her own. It's a love affair that is also a treacherous game.
Sonya's boss is a man who has previously played his part to bring Bond and the West down behind the scenes in two previous Bond novels — but who has never yet appeared, until now. A Fleming creation, the evil genius responsible for Stalnaya Ruka just may be Bond's most dangerous enemy yet.