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The Year of the Scorpion


The first bullet caught her in the shoulder, the second in the thigh. The Chinese border guard stopped firing - she was dead, snared in the wire that had ended her dash for freedom. The Hong Kong police could collect her body in the morning.

The murderous old men who clung to power in Peking would never know how close she had come to unmasking their prize spymaster in the West. The elusive Scorpion – who has penetrated the nerve centre of the Trident submarines they fear so much because they still have no defence against them. And now Scorpion is also penetrating the seething opposition that threatens to destroy the last and greatest Communist empire . . .

THE YEAR OF THE SCORPION is Michael Hartland’s finest achievement – an explosive thriller packed with action, courage, love and betrayal, a fight to the death between two enemies who never meet.


"One of the best thrillers I have ever read." - THE INDEPENDENT

“Off to a racing start – a dignified, above average thriller.” - THE OBSERVER

“Racy Oriental molehunt with an authentic dash of Whitehall pomposity and ineptitude.” - NIGEL WEST


“Complex as a Chinese puzzle, distinguished by Hartland’s exotic settings in the Far East and his precise portraits of the agents.” - LOS ANGELES TIMES

“Relentless action and an atmosphere of tension and urgency that makes it very hard to put down.” - WESTERN MORNING NEWS

Buy Michael Hartland