Illegal Action and Unsinkable Rubber Ducks
Spooks are us this week, with a new novel about real ones from the former Intelligence chief Stella Rimington, and what appears to be literally a ghost-written thriller from that master of the macabre, Christopher Brookmyre.
Rimington's Illegal Action (Random House, CDs, £14.99. offer £13.49 inc p&p from 0870 1608080 or timesonline.co.uk./booksfirst) again stars the MI5 officer Liz Carlyle, and this time takes its cue from the Alexander Litvinenko fiasco. Carlyle is in counter-espionage, looking at threats to the wealthy Russian oligarchs living in London.
Emma Fielding's ladylike voicing of the hero is a little hard to take, and in places the plot seems highly implausible, but there is so much fascinating description of auction house shenanigans and incredibly complex covert operations that the listener is carried to the end only slightly under protest.
Brookmyre's Attack of the Unsinkable Rubber Ducks (Hachette, CDs, £15.99, offer £14.39) takes a little getting used to, but the Glaswegian Billy Boyd reads with true attack and once we sort out who is who, this is Brookmyre at his blackly satirical best.
You can buy this on Amazon UK