I can report that the new Mick Herron novel, Slough House, is as eye-wateringly funny as it is nerve-shreddingly tense. I think this might be the best Jackson Lamb outing yet, and that's taking it above a very high benchmark
This is a darker, scarier Herron. The gags are still there but the satire's more biting. The privatization of a secret service op and the manipulation of news is relevant and horribly credible
Mick Herron is one of the finest writers of his generation
I enjoyed Slough House tremendously. Witty, clever and horribly on point. Lots to laugh about while being careful not to miss a word. This isn't a book to skim read
An excellent writer
[Slough House] is the best yet. The jokes are frequent and good, the pacing first rate, and the plot pieces, the moves and countermoves, snap as satisfyingly into place as anything I've read in the genre.
Herron has certainly devised the most completely realised espionage universe since that peopled by George Smiley...What Herron has actually been writing is a modern sit-com. This is "the Office" (as insiders refer to MI6) as The Office, half-complete with the Slough setting.
[Jackson Lamb] Herron's glorious creation propels the story to the bitter end where the non-stop barrage of jokes is fatally undercut by a final shocking twist.
I'll tell you what, to have been lucky enough to play Smiley in one's career; and now go and play Jackson Lamb in Mick Herron's novels - the heir, in a way, to le Carre - is a terrific thing.
Herron's novels are genuinely thrilling, but what makes them refreshing in this rather po-faced genre are the abundance and the quality of the jokes. The recent books also seem to me to have more direct, and savage, political satire
Superb... justifies Herron's reputation as the heir to the late, lamented John le Carré
Herron offers his sardonic and penetrating take on the state of the nation. The jokes keep coming so that we laugh in spite of the horror of what is happening at this grubby nexus of money, politics, self-interest and manipulation. The novel ends on the cruellest cliffhanger I have ever encountered. Brilliant.
Herron certainly appears to be having great fun in Slough House... the verve with which Herron writes carries the reader along... Herron is capable of writing with great tenderness
The brilliant modern spy series continues with its darkest, most satirical chapter yet
Herron beautifully describes the lives of the spies with a past but no future who are left to confront those who believe they have a future but can ignore the past - while all the time Jackson Lamb broods over the coils of the story like the spymaster he truly is
Slough House is Herron's best novel yet - and that's saying something... his status as Britain's finest living thriller writer should be confirmed. A book of the year in any year, Slough House is an absolute tour-de-force that should not be missed
I'm glad to report that Herron's "hero", Jackson Lamb, is on sparkling form, if anyone quite so dissolute and shambolic can actually sparkle, his malapropisms still flying off the page
The contemporary references keep the satire level high, but the plotting and character are what actually keep the series going. Some of the background plots have been smouldering for a while. There are laugh out levels of dialogue and snark
What sets [Slough House] apart, and makes it a thrilling read - more so than the espionage intrigue - is the brilliance and wit of the writing and the roguish hilarity of the dialogue. . . The haranguing put-downs, which would scorch the skin off most mortals, are terrific to read at a safe distance. And while Lamb is the growling anti-hero who keeps on giving, there is wonderful energy in the many detours and hilarious character descriptions
The adventures of Lamb, Cartwright, Ho and the rest of the Slough House crew are one of the highlights of recent literature as far as I'm concerned. You can keep Hilary Mantel, Sally Rooney and, God help us, David Walliams. Every time that the reassuringly prolific Herron publishes another book, the door will be barred to intruders, a glass of something that Jackson Lamb might approve of shall be poured, and I shall settle down for a bracing, hilarious evening of reading the sort of provocative, innovative fiction that, by rights, should be winning the Man Booker as well as the CWA Gold Dagger
Confirms Mick Herron as the best spy novelist now working
Out of a wickedly imagined version of MI5, [Herron] has spun works of diabolical plotting and high-spirited cynicism, their pages filled with sardonic wit, their characters approaching the surreal . . . Mr. Herron goes about this with bouncing black humor and a set of characters whose appearance and manner would be over the top in any other era. Happily for Mr. Herron-if alas for us-events continue to produce rich material for his special gifts, and we hope he is scribbling away making good use of it all.
[Herron's] cleverly plotted page-turners are driven by dialogue that bristles with one-liners. Much of the humor comes from Herron's sharp eye for the way bureaucracies, whether corporate or clandestine, function and malfunction. The world of Slough House is closer to The Office than to 007.
A gripping thriller but wickedly funny too. I laughed long and hard
Herron's seventh instalment in the Slough House series is among his best - seamlessly plotted and darkly humorous as ever, but also surprisingly moving
Herron's formula of misdirection and multiple viewpoints still works like a charm
Herron's brilliant series of modern spy fiction is witty and satirical, credibly topical and compulsive reading.