Skip to main content

The Catch: A Novella


The Catch: A Novella

THE CATCH is everything you want in a novella and a thriller. It is part of Mick Herron’s outstanding Slough House series, but you don’t have to know a thing about that to enjoy this excellent story. You can read it in a little over an hour, and the paperback and e-book include an excerpt from THIS IS WHAT HAPPENED, Herron’s 2018 financial espionage novel that you will be compelled to read after finishing this one. Yes, it’s that good.

The Slough House is a dumping ground where British intelligence agents go when they have royally screwed the pooch on an assignment. John Bachelor fits that description. Since he can’t be trusted with an intelligence assignment, John is relegated to work that is referred to as being a “milkman.” It’s an easy enough task. On a monthly basis, he is supposed to check up on retired and disabled agents who have been pensioned off. It’s a “Hi, how are you?” job. The problem is that John isn’t too competent at this, either.

"THE CATCH may be short, but there are still enough twists and turns to fill a novel three times its length."

So when a pair of agents wake him out of a sound sleep --- in an apartment where he is not supposed to be --- looking for a disabled agent named Benny Manors, John has no idea where Manors is; he hasn’t seen him in months. He is given a short deadline to locate him, and things get complicated from there, particularly when he gets the sense that maybe, just maybe, he is being played, and in more ways than one.

THE CATCH may be short, but there are still enough twists and turns to fill a novel three times its length. There is also plenty of humor, in addition to some heartbreak and a bit of tragedy. Herron’s characters, great and small, stay with you from beginning to end and thereafter, as does the story. It is terrific reading and wonderful entertainment, and is more than worth your time and money, as is everything with Mick Herron’s name on the cover and spine.

I strongly recommend THE CATCH to anyone who has ever enjoyed an espionage novel, and I urge those who have ever hated one but love superb writing to give it a try as well.

Reviewed by Joe Hartlaub on February 7, 2020

The Catch: A Novella
by Mick Herron

  • Publication Date: January 28, 2020
  • Genres: Fiction, Suspense, Thriller
  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Soho Crime
  • ISBN-10: 1641292342
  • ISBN-13: 9781641292344