The List by Mick Herron

This is an older Slough House novella, published in 2018 and numbered 2.5 in the order. That’s out of book #s 1-8 so far.  

The List
By Mick Herron

2019 /  novella 
Read by Gerard Doyle 1h 53m
Rating: A / spy novella
#2.5 in Slough House series 

John Bachelor, a semi-retired MI5 employee, has been assigned to look into the life of the newly deceased Dieter Hess, an agent for whom Bachelor was the handler.  He’s been told that Dieter had a secret bank account. Bachelor should have known.  

There really is quite a lot squeezed into this novella which explores a bit of the life of John Bachelor. He’s an interesting Slough House series character (and they are all “characters,” but he’s not one of the actual Slow Horse regulars as a member agent assigned there. He just shows up occasionally.  

Bachelor’s little story provides a bit of information about Jackson Lamb and a few others who work with or out of Slough House around which the rest of the series revolves. 

It’s a good story catching the ambiance and flavor of their world of 21st century British espionage. Herron is a wonderful stylist and his characters are rich and complete. 

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3 Responses to The List by Mick Herron

  1. MI6 says:

    Don’t miss reading Bad Actors et al in the Slough House series … even though there are so many epic espionage films and TV shows on now. There’s The Ipcress File with newcomer Joe Cole, Mick Herron’s Slow Horses from the Slough House stables, The Courier about Greville Wynne played by Benedict Cumberbatch who looks astonishingly just like Wynne did in real life, of course Colin Firth in Operation Mincemeat, Olen Steinhauer’s All the Old Knives and let’s not forget Kaley Cuoco in the Flight Attendant.

    Indeed, ignoring the fact based Courier, there’s almost too much fictional espionage on the menu to cope with so why not try reading instead. If you liked Deighton, Herron or Wynne, we suggest a noir fact based espionage masterpiece could do the trick. Three compelling thrillers spring to mind. They are all down to earth, often curious real life Cold War novels you’ll never put down.

    Try Bill Browder’s Red Notice, Bill Fairclough’s Beyond Enkription in The Burlington Files series and Ben Macintyre’s The Spy and the Traitor about KGB Colonel Oleg Gordievsky.

    Talking of Col Oleg, he knew MI6’s Col Mac (aka Col Alan Pemberton in real life) who was Edward Burlington’s handler in The Burlington Files. Bill Fairclough (aka Edward Burlington) came across John le Carré (aka David Cornwell) long after the latter’s MI6 career ended thanks to Kim Philby. The novelist Graham Greene used to work in MI6 reporting to Philby and Bill Fairclough actually stayed in Hôtel Oloffson during a covert op in Haiti which was at the heart of Graham Greene’s spy novel The Comedians.


    • beckylindroos says:

      Thank you, I’ve read all the Slough House books to date and waiting on the next one. I’m not.a huge spy novel fan but I enjoy one occasionally.

      Liked by 1 person

      • MI6 says:

        If you are as anti-Bond as Mick H then you should find Fairclough’s Beyond Enkription not only curiously different but an enthralling read. Best see website first – it’s fascinating in its own right.


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