Historical Fiction Mystery Thriller

Nucleus – Rory Clements

22 February 2019
Nucleus Book Cover Nucleus
Rory Clements
Spy stories

From the award-winning Sunday Times bestselling author of CORPUS The eve of war: a secret so deadly, nothing and no one is safe June 1939. England is partying like there is no tomorrow, gas masks at the ready. In Cambridge the May Balls are played out with a frantic intensity - but the good times won't last... In Europe, the Nazis have invaded Czechoslovakia, and in Germany he persecution of the Jews is now so widespread that desperate Jewish parents send their children to safety in Britain aboard the Kindertransport. Closer to home, the IRA's S-Plan bombing campaign has resulted in more than 100 terrorist outrages around England. But perhaps the most far-reaching event of all goes largely unreported: in Germany, Otto Hahn has produced the first man-made fission and an atomic device is now a very real possibility. The Nazis set up the Uranverein group of physicists: its task is to build a superbomb. The German High Command is aware that British and US scientists are working on similar line. Cambridge's Cavendish Laboratory is where the atom was split in 1932. Might the Cambridge men now win the race for a nuclear bomb? Hitler's generals need to be sure they know all the Cavendish's secrets. Only then will it be safe for Germany to wage war. When one of the Cavendish's finest brains is murdered, Professor Tom Wilde is once more drawn into an intrigue from which there seems no escape. In a conspiracy that stretches from Cambridge to Berlin and from Washington DC to the west coast of Ireland, he faces deadly forces that threaten the fate of the world. Praise for CORPUS 'Dramatic...pacy and assured' Daily Mail 'Political polarisation, mistrust and simmering violence' The Times 'A standout historical novel and spy thriller' Daily Express Praise for RORY CLEMENTS 'Enjoyable, bloody and brutish' Guardian 'Sends a shiver down your spine' Daily Mail 'A colourful history lesson . . . exciting narrative twists' Sunday Telegraph.


Nucleus is Rory Clements’ second book in the Tom Wilde series and it is an enthralling, high tension spy thriller that merges many of the political events at play in Europe at the dawn of the Second World War. Tom Wilde, Cambridge University professor, finds himself in the middle of a deadly game of espionage that could see the victor deliver the atom bomb. With a race to deliver the ultimate weapon of destruction, all threats must be eliminated and resources protected. Misleading and deceiving the enemy is key to winning the impending war. Tom has to weave his way through this dangerous web.

The Nazis have just produced a fission reaction and are now much closer to delivering an atomic bomb. They need to know how far the British and US research has developed in their race to be the first to use it. Cambridge University is the centre of where the Germans are trying to infiltrate the research centres and where the Russians have already established a spy ring that will become infamous, and last for over a decade. The backdrop to this unseen war is a bombing campaign of sabotage from the IRA in Britain, as they see an opportunity with British concerns refocusing towards other major European forces. The IRA create a link with the Nazis to help destabilise Britain further.

The blend of historical conspiracies and alliances is fictional but intriguing how they add to his story. The writing is slick and extremely well controlled to manage the various plot threads and maintain suspense throughout. The conspiracies and allegiances are complex and not immediately obvious, with plenty of surprises and suspense to keep the reader captivated until the end.

Tom Wilde is an intriguing and interesting character and is set to continue on a series of thrilling adventures for Rory Clements. I would highly recommend this book.

I would like to thank Bonnier Zaffre and NetGalley for providing me with a free copy in return for an honest review.

Peter Donnelly

Founder of The Reading Desk, supporting readers, authors, publishers and book industry. Top Reviewer on Amazon, Goodreads, and NetGalley peter@thereadingdesk.com

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