Beautifully written, extraordinarily powerful, One Two wins the 2017
Millennium Book Award
A hundred years ago, a wealthy family of visionaries prophesied the devastation that global warming would bring to world food supplies in the 21st century. They decided to prepare for the worst, and embark on an ambitious plan of revolution.
Lambeth Group agents, Zoe Tampsin and Gavin Shawlens, prepare to investigate the unusual death of a government defence scientist. Someone is determined to stop them before they get started. Zoe uncovers two unfamiliar words, Tabula Rasa. The only other clue is the curious behaviour of the dead scientist's son, Ramsay. Posing as a couple, Gavin and Zoe enter the secret and dangerous world of Ramsay's aristocratic guardians, headed by philanthropist billionaire, Lord Zacchary Silsden. What Gavin uncovers, shocks him to the bottom of his soul. Does he have the courage and the conviction to stop the greatest revolution in human history? What Zoe discovers about Gavin, words can't describe. Zoe is faced with an impossible choice, but one thing is certain, she will not hesitate to do her duty, no matter the cost.
A high octane and gripping novel by a writer in full command of his talents Tabula Rasa marks a notable step change in the Lambeth Group thriller series with Zoe Tampsin stepping up to take centre stage. Kicking off with a brutal and graphic opening chapter we are reminded that you don’t just read Bickerstaff novels, he draws you in with trance like storytelling that’s wholly absorbing, but this might well be his best yet. One of the biggest complaints about thrillers is that they often feel implausible or are too dumbed down and the best in genre stand out because they combine character integrity with tight effective storytelling. This is Bickerstaff’s forte. With crisp, vivid prose, he rarely wastes a word as he weaves a multi-layered plot that is as satisfying as it is unsettling. We feel Gavin’s angst and share Zoe’s determination as the worst case scenario unfolds with twists and scrapes aplenty to keep us on tenterhooks and second guessing the final outcome. Characterisation is pin-sharp and as in previous novels, it is the relationship between Gavin and Zoe that powers the narrative with Bickerstaff always managing to avoid cliché.
Pick up any novel in the Lambeth Group Thriller series and you won’t regret it, but Tabula Rasa reminds us that Bickerstaff is very much at the top of his game and it is recommended without reservation.
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Does he have the courage and the conviction to stop the greatest revolution in human history?