Slow Horses by Mick Herron

‘Slow Horses’ is a witty, cynical look at British MI6. The slow horses are the people who work at Slough House. They are the agents who have disgraced themselves in some way and have been sent into exile. It is hoped that the mindless tasks they carry out will eventually cause them to resign.

But something is happening at Slough House. River Cartwright has just been given a task other than paperwork and Jackson Lamb, head of Slough House, has an uncharacteristic gleam in his eye.

Then a young man is kidnapped and there may be a link to some of the work that the slow horses have been doing.

The kidnapped young man is shown on the internet and there is a countdown to his decapitation.

The slow horses slowly get their acts together as they try to remember what it was like to be real agents.

Can they find the kidnapped man before it’s too late? Who is really behind the kidnapping and how does Regents Park (workplace of the real agents) fit in with what is going on? Can the group of misfits at Slough House redeem themselves and find their way back on the fast track?


This book was a lot of fun and it was good to see agents being real people and making real mistakes. The power plays among the characters were quite comical. The cynical tone of the story lessened the impact of the gruesome violence and death.

I’ve already read the award winning sequel to this book – ‘Dead Lions’, so it was good to get the back story on some of the characters.

I’ll definitely be reading the third book in the series – ‘Real Tigers’ when it is released.


Book Published 2010


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