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Uncommon Enemy

UK Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Uncommon Enemy is the third in Alan Judd’s Charles Thoroughgood trilogy.  The first, the award-winning A Breed of Heroes, charted Charles’s adventures in the army in Northern Ireland.  The second, Legacy, followed him into MI6 during the Cold War.

Uncommon Enemy finds MI6 merged into the new Single Intelligence Agency, with Charles recalled from early retirement to find a missing agent.  But there is a hidden reason for his recall, wiht roots deep in Charles’s past.  Teh unearthing of these roots brings to light not only an espionage case in the heart of Whitehall (based, as the book makes clear, on a possibly still unresolved real one), but forces Charles to confront long-buried aspects of his own history and, most significantly, the woman he never married.  In its entangling of the personal and the professional, Uncommon Enemy shows like no other novel the human realities that underlie spying.