Novichok poison

A toxic atmosphere: Slough House, by Mick Herron, reviewed

Mick Herron has been called ‘the John le Carré of his generation’ by the crime writer Val McDermid, and in the 11 years since the first of his ‘Slough House’ novels appeared they have become a best-selling phenomenon. Herron echoes le Carré’s horror at Brexit, which in this latest instalment is only referred to as ‘You-Know-What’. Slough House is, in fact, nowhere near the Berkshire town but an office building close to the Barbican, and no less drab for it. This is where a bunch of ‘slow horses’, spies who have blotted their copybooks in various ways, nominally work. Herron has said: ‘Failures are more interesting than successes: they have