Ellen Butler Unveils Suspenseful Cold War Spy Thriller

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Provided by Ellen Butler, Author

International bestselling author Ellen Butler is delighted to announce the release of her newest novel, Operation Blackbird, A Cold War Spy Novel, Oct. 26, 2022. Operation Blackbird takes the reader on a spy adventure from South America to Europe during a time when the yoke of Communism is tightening the reins on an unwilling people.


It’s 1952, and Operation Blackbird follows CIA officers Miriam Becker and Jacob Devlin into East Berlin to help a Soviet scientist elude his KGB escorts and escape to the West. A betrayal leaves Jake trapped behind the Iron Curtain—and Miriam racing against time to get him and the Soviet out alive. Before the KGB can catch them.

The novel is inspired by Soviet defector Grigori Alexandrovich Tokaev, a.k.a Grigori Tokaty, a Soviet rocket scientist. In 1947, Tokaty was sent to Berlin as a ranking member of the Soviet Control Commission. Fearing for his life the Soviet, along with his family, luckily escaped across the East/West Berlin border into British hands. Unfortunately, the full story of his escape it buried in redacted British intelligence files.

In the aftermath of World War II, Communist East Germany hemorrhaged a population of skilled laborers and intellectual workforce. Desperate to keep its inhabitants from leaving, in the spring of 1952 the government built an 880-mile fortified border wall, patrolled by soldiers and dogs, along the East/West German border. Defectors who were lucky enough obtain travel papers to Berlin might have a chance of escape through the East/West Berlin border, until 1961 when the Berlin Wall was constructed to stem the tide.

Operation Blackbird marks the twelfth novel for Butler, and her second historical fiction. “My readers have been calling for a sequel to The Brass Compass, so I took a break from my mystery series to focus on this novel. I enjoyed returning to the genre of historical espionage and spent hundreds of hours on research.” said Butler. “My favorite interview was with a retired CIA officer who spent time in Berlin during the Cold War.”

A former public policy writer, Butler is also the author of the bestselling Karina Cardinal Mystery series. She is a member of Sisters in Crime, Virginia Writer’s Club, and International Thriller Writers.

Operation Blackbird is available through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and other major retailers.

Butler will be signing her new novel at venues in Newport News later this year. For details, visit EllenButler.net. Follow her on Instagram at @EButlerBooks and on Facebook at @EllenButlerBooks.


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