A Review of Steve Berry’s Book the King’s Deception

Buckle up, history buffs and thriller aficionados, because we’re embarking on a treacherous journey through time with Steve Berry’s pulse-pounding novel, “The King’s Deception.” This isn’t your average historical fiction—Berry masterfully weaves together real-life figures and captivating conspiracies, leaving you breathlessly turning pages until the explosive climax.

Prepare to be Swept Away by Secrets

Cotton Malone is a former agent for the US Justice Department who has left the service and now owns a bookshop in Copenhagen, Denmark. He and his son, Gary, are flying from Atlanta to London and from there to Denmark. As a favor to a former colleague at the CIA, he agrees to escort a fugitive British teenager to London. Unknown to Malone, however, the agent that requested the favor has a hidden agenda.

Ian Dunne, the fugitive teenager, is a skilled pickpocket and con artist. He has stolen a computer flash drive from a dead CIA contractor. Blake Antrim, the CIA agent who is running a clandestine operation in Britain called The King’s Deception, wants to retrieve the flash drive. It contains information that could sabotage his operation.

Blake also wants to get Cotton and his son to London for his own personal reasons. Sixteen years ago, Antrim had an affair with Cotton’s wife. He believes that Gary might be his son.

The King’s Deception is an operation based on information from the reign of Queen Elizabeth I. It is designed to persuade (Force) the British Government to intervene and stop the Scots from releasing the Libyan agent Al-Megrahi. Al Megrahi was the agent that caused the crash of the airliner in Lockerbie, Scotland. He is supposedly dying of Cancer, and the Scottish courts have decided, as a humanitarian gesture, to release him so that he can die in his home country. The Americans, however, believe that Great Britain has made a deal for oil and other concessions with Libya not to interfere with the release.

The King’s Deception is an elaborate plot to discredit Queen Elizabeth I, who confiscated Irish land during her reign and established English rule. The plot threatens to blackmail Great Britain by establishing Queen Elizabeth’s authority as fraudulent and the seizure of Irish land illegal. If so, then Great Britain would no longer have any claim to Northern Ireland. This would probably destroy the fragile peace in the region and return Northern Ireland to civil war.

The plot follows international intrigue and the attempt of the CIA to persuade Great Britain to pressure Scotland to stop the release of the terrorist. The intelligence agencies of the US and GB are involved in spying on each other, kidnapping, and other covert activities. In addition, the story is a fascinating journey through the history of the British Empire and the successions of the Tudor ruling class.

There is the sordid spectacle of agents of two friendly countries murdering each other allegedly to uphold the honor and policies of their particular nation. There is the involvement of personal ambition, revenge, and misplaced loyalties.

Cotton Malone, his son Gary, and Ian Dunne, the fugitive teenager, are innocents pulled into the action through the manipulation of CIA Agent Blake Antrim. Fortunately, their skill and teamwork helped to thwart an international incident and preserve a national secret for Great Britain.

A Feast for the Mind and Senses

Beyond the page-turning suspense, “The King’s Deception” is a feast for the mind and senses. Berry’s vivid descriptions transport you to Elizabethan England with its opulent palaces, smoky taverns, and whispered rumors in dark corners. You’ll feel the chill of the London fog, the crackle of parchment under your fingers, and the weight of history pressing down on every step Malone takes.

Of course, the story is fictional, but Mr. Berry is skillful at detailing the revisionist history. He embellishes speculation about historical fact so well that you begin to wonder if this ploy in English history really happened.

This is a page-turner, and Mr. Berry’s style makes it an easy read. It makes you wonder just what is going on at the highest levels of your government and intelligence services.

The King's Deception

The King’s Deception
Publisher: BallantineBooks (January 1, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0553841335
ISBN-13: 978-0553841336

This is more than just a book; it’s an experience. Get ready to be captivated, challenged, and utterly thrilled by “The King’s Deception.” So, grab your copy, dim the lights, and let Steve Berry whisk you away on a historical adventure you won’t soon forget.

Scroll to Top