Quercus signs Hemming's 'riveting' book on the death of a spy in the IRA

HH author photo 26 09 23

Quercus has signed Henry Hemming’s "riveting" book, Four Shots in the Night: A True Story of Espionage, Murder and Justice in Northern Ireland, about the murder of Frank Hegarty, an informer in the IRA.

Non-fiction publishing director Richard Milner acquired UK and Commonwealth rights, excluding Canada, from Jonathan Conway at the Jonathan Conway Literary Agency. Ben Adams at PublicAffairs acquired US and Canadian rights from George Lucas at InkWell Management, on behalf of Conway. The book will be published on 28th March 2024.

The synopsis reads: "The brutal killing of Frank Hegarty began a decades-long search for justice. In a compulsive blend of investigative journalism and true crime thriller, Henry Hemming exposes the parallel worlds of the IRA and British intelligence through the lives of those inextricably bound up in both.

"After his recruitment by British secret intelligence, Frank Hegarty infiltrated IRA circles and became trusted with the most covert operations. But soon Frank would have to make an impossible decision, with devastating and deadly consequences. In 2016 a detective began to investigate the chilling possibility that Frank was murdered by another undercover British agent, known as ‘Stakeknife’."

Milner commented: "It’s a privilege to be publishing Henry’s new book which teaches you about a dark period of 20th century political history while gripping you from the first page."

Hemming added: "This is the most powerful and moving story I’ve ever been able to tell. As well as being a real-life murder mystery, it is a book about love and death, and the extraordinary choices we make in moments of crisis. But what drew me into this story, more than anything else, were the four remarkable characters at the heart of it, and the way their lives became irretrievably entwined. I’m really pleased to be working again with Quercus, and can’t wait for publication and the chance to share this story more widely."