Author(s): Frank Gardner
Authentic, unnervingly current and action-packed, Ultimatum is the explosive new thriller from BBC security correspondent and No.1 bestseller Frank Gardner.
Deep within a cave system at a military complex south-east of Tehran, hidden from the prying eyes of Western satellites, scientists are working round-the-clock on a banned device. Acting on the orders of a renegade cell within the ultra-conservative Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, their intention is to propel Iran into the elite club of nuclear-armed nations - and seal its domination of the Middle East.
Britain's intelligence agencies know something is up. They have someone on the inside ready to hand over information but first he must get out of Iran. Crossing the mountainous border into Armenia, he was due to rendezvous with MI6 agent Luke Carlton at a remote, snowbound monastery. But the mission goes bloodily wrong. Luke needs to be extracted. And fast.
On the back foot after that fiasco, MI6 is presented with an opportunity to recruit someone with unique access to the leader of the IRGC hardliners. And Luke is chosen to reel them in. Going into Iran undercover is dangerous enough, but then a senior British government minister on an official visit is kidnapped, his close protection officer killed and Britain is presented with a terrifying ultimatum. With the clock ticking, Luke Carlton races to head off a catastrophic confrontation in the Gulf . . .
Born in 1961, Frank Gardner is the BBC's Security Correspondent, reporting for television and radio on issues of domestic and international security, notably on Islamist extremist related terrorism. A fluent Arabist, with a degree in Arabic and Islamic Studies, he was previously the BBC's Middle East Correspondent based in Cairo, and before that in Dubai. In June 2004, while reporting in Riyadh, Frank and his cameraman, Simon Cumbers, were ambushed by Islamist gunmen. Simon was killed outright, Frank was shot multiple times and left for dead. Against all expectations, he survived and, in 2006, published his acclaimed and bestselling memoir, Blood and Sand. In 2009 he published Far Horizons, a much praised account of his life as an inveterate traveller and explorer. He has written for the Economist, Sunday Times, Daily Telegraph and Time Out and has been published in The Best of Sunday Times Travel Writing. Awarded an OBE in 2005 for services to journalism, Frank Gardner was profiled in the BBC's television series, Who Do You Think You Are? in September 2015. Frank lives in London with his family.