The Umbrella Murder

Ulrik Skotte


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WH Allen
11 July 2024
ISBN: 9780753560167
336 pages

From the publisher

A revealing, page-turning story of the most iconic Cold War spy killing of all time, for fans of Ben Macintyre, Henry Hemming and the novels of John Le Carre and Mick Herron.

'This masterly investigation, spanning 30 years, into the assassination of a cold war dissident, Georgi Markov, in London in 1978 exposes an assassin worthy of James Bond' -Observer, Book of the Week

London, September 1978: exiled Bulgarian dissident Georgi Markov is murdered in broad daylight on Waterloo Bridge with what appears to be a poison-tipped umbrella. It would become the most infamous unsolved killing of the Cold War.

Many years later, young journalist Ulrik Skotte is approached with explosive new information about a man alleged to be responsible for Markov’s death – a spy code-named Piccadilly who worked for the Bulgarian secret service. This meeting launched Skotte into a hunt for the killer lasting more than a quarter of a century, bringing him face to face with eccentric conspiracy theorists, a washed-up former dictator, ageing Danish spooks – and, ultimately, with Agent Piccadilly himself.

Drawing on an incredible cache of original documents, interviews and archive material, The Umbrella Murder provides jaw-dropping answers to questions that have persisted for nearly five decades: who killed Georgi Markov? And who has been protecting the assassin ever since?