Imogen Robertson has written a thriller billed as "The Firm meets McMafia" under a new pseudonym, Marina Palmer, for Hodder & Stoughton.
World rights were acquired by publisher Nick Sayers from agent Broo Doherty at the DHH Literary Agency. The Russian Doll will be published on 25th November 2021.
“This thrilling and exciting novel, opens the door on the Russian high life in London and corruption at the heart of British politics, reaching all the way into the Secret Services,” the publisher said.
The blurb reads: “When Ruth Miller returns a dropped scarf to Elena Shilkov, she is whisked from a dreary shared house to a world of unimagined luxury. The super-rich Russian wants a new personal assistant and won't take no for an answer. Ruth gets accommodation, a credit card, and a complete wardrobe makeover. And by the time she realises she’s getting too deep into something very sinister, it’s too late to get out.”
Sayers said: “I jumped at the chance to work with Imogen when I knew that she wanted to develop a new thriller. I absolutely love what she has done with The Russian Doll. Imogen first made her name with historical fiction and although she has written contemporary work too, this seemed like an exciting new direction which we should celebrate with a new name. So, I really believe Marina Palmer is destined to become a major new force in crime and suspense. The Russian Doll is so well named – it just keeps delivering surprises and thrills, right to the last page.”
Before becoming a full-time writer, Robertson directed for TV, film, and radio. She is the author of several novels, including the Crowther and Westerman series and The Paris Winter (Headline), and has co-written novels with former Labour deputy leader Tom Watson including The House (Little, Brown) as well as with screenwriter Darby Kealey and Wilbur Smith. She has been shortlisted for the CWA Historical Dagger three times and for the CWA Dagger in the Library Award.
She commented: “Working with Nick has been a great experience and I'm very grateful for the welcome the whole team has given to Marina Palmer and The Russian Doll. The novel is a departure from my earlier work, and writing it has been invigorating, challenging and a fascinating process which has taken me in new directions as an author. I'm very proud of the result and look forward to seeing where Marina takes us next.”