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Mark Batey

London, in the long, hot summer of 2022. When separate leaks indicate the existence of STARFISH, a Russian espionage operation, British Intelligence investigates. Is STARFISH real or fake? Who or what is its target? Undercover agent John Stirling follows a lead to Berlin. He meets Rex Hampton, head of an armaments firm, and Astrid Lazarenko, a Kyiv University tutor whose family knew tragedy long before the current Russian invasion of Ukraine. Could they have any connection to STARFISH, which will soon cause massive disruption in the UK? Stirling finds himself drawn ever deeper into the multi-layered operation. The trail leads to a remote technology park in rural Northumberland, where a brutal collision between his personal and professional lives awaits. Even when he discovers the audacious truth, can Stirling be certain who the real enemy is?

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Mark Batey was born and raised in Newcastle upon Tyne. As a student at Pembroke College, Cambridge, he chaired the college film society, and after five years in advertising he forged a career in the film industry. This included three years at the BFI and two decades running the trade association for UK film distributors. Throughout his career, he scripted articles, speeches and reports, and is thrilled now to be working on longer-form narratives. Starfish is his third book. He splits his time between Northumberland and London.