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(Tom Wilde #2)

4.10  ·  Rating details ·  1,217 ratings  ·  115 reviews
From the award-winning Sunday Times bestselling author of CORPUS

The eve of war: a secret so deadly, nothing and no one is safe

June 1939. England is partying like there is no tomorrow, gas masks at the ready. In Cambridge the May Balls are played out with a frantic intensity - but the good times won't last... In Europe, the Nazis have invaded Czechoslovakia, and in Germany
Kindle Edition, 384 pages
Published January 25th 2018 by Zaffre
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Peter Personally,I think you could read as a stand alone story. The plot has very little that relies on the previous book. However, the background to the pe…morePersonally,I think you could read as a stand alone story. The plot has very little that relies on the previous book. However, the background to the personal relationships in the book and how they developed, is covered in the first book and whilst this is not essential to Nucleus, it is good to be aware of the dynamics of these relationships and how they came about.(less)

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 ·  1,217 ratings  ·  115 reviews

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Dec 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: netgalley
As spy thrillers go, it doesn't get much better than Nucleus!

It's June 1939 and Thomas Wilde, history professor at Cambridge University, finds himself caught up in the middle of conspiracies and espionage as Europe hovers on the brink of war. In England, the man in the street may have his gas mask at the ready, but in Cambridge the tradition of the May Balls goes ahead in much the same way they always have, but there is a feeling in the air that this is a last fling before the fear of war become
Nucleus is Rory Clements’ second book in the Tom Wilde series and it is an enthralling, high tension spy thriller that merges many of the political events at play in Europe at the dawn of the Second World War. Tom Wilde, Cambridge University professor, finds himself in the middle of a deadly game of espionage that could see the victor deliver the atom bomb. With a race to deliver the ultimate weapon of destruction, all threats must be eliminated and resources protected. Misleading and d
This is the second in the history professor Tom Wilde series, and it is much better than the first novel. It is a rollicking historical adventure set in the febrile atmosphere of pre-war 1939 located in Germany, USA and Ireland. However, it is primarily based in Cambridge, where American Tom Wilde returns after a meeting with President Roosevelt, looking forward to connecting with his next door neighbour and his love, Lydia Morris. The Germans are concerned about the latest developments in parti ...more
Whispering Stories
Book Reviewed by Clive on

Rory Clements certainly knows how to pack a novel with action and information. In Nucleus (I love a one word book title) he gives us a classic ‘Ripping Yarn’ with lots of action set among the academia of Cambridge. He also gives a detailed background into life in the UK in 1939 when war was seen as inevitable. Nucleus has many storylines which all weave together but Clements tells them in a clear and easy manner enabling the reader to be fully a
Margaret Mary
Jun 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Nucleus is the second book in this series and with this book, Rory Clements did an incredibly good job of creating a unique and thrilling fictional piece of work, whilst amalgamating many historical events and conflicts that were occurring during the Second World War period.

I think it clever to incorporate actual organisations and people who heroically assisted Jewish people, especially the young children to escape from Germany. This adds weight and realism to his developing plot. Being able to
Nov 18, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Having enjoyed, “Corpus,” the first in the series featuring Professor Tom Wilde, I was keen to read the next in the series. This is set in 1939 and is set mainly in Cambridge, but also in Germany and the States. Indeed, Wilde is visiting his native America when he is asked to meet President Roosevelt. To his surprise, Wilde is asked to keep his eyes open when he returns to Cambridge and to liaise with Colonel Dexter Flood and Milt Hardiman; currently staying at Old Hall in Cambridgeshire with hi ...more
Dec 07, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
3.5 stars

Despite the dark and twisty plots of Nazis, murderers, and the IRA, this is a light hearted and fun thriller. Now back with the very nosy American history professor, Tom Wild, in the heart of Cambridge, we follow his attempts to work out the ominous connections between a missing boy, a dead scientist, and the race for the nuclear bomb. Mix the fast pace with a cast of colourful characters who could all be dodgy as hell, and you've got the recipe for a rip-roaring time. Perhaps more on t
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It’s 1939 and Britain is beset by enemies at home and abroad. In Europe, the Nazis are spreading their malign influence across Europe and gearing up for war. Across the Atlantic there are those who would wield their influence to prevent the United States coming to Britain’s aid in the event of war with Germany. At home, the IRA is waging a sur
Absolutely superb. With no doubt at all, one of the finest books I've read this year. I could not put it down.

Jan 21, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Brace yourselves for more conspiracy, subterfuge and a good dose of derring-do in Nucleus, an accomplished follow up to the brilliant Corpus , which first introduced us to dashing American academic Tom Wilde. Must admit I was on tenterhooks waiting for this next book after the explosive and captivating events of the first outing...
Rory Clements could not have picked a better era as the backdrop for these books, with Europe on the cusp of war, the reluctance of America to be drawn into the crossf
Mark Harrison
Sep 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another excellent Tom Wilde novel. His Cambridge base becomes the centre of Nazi espionage, IRA plotting, murder and child kidnap. Full of unexpected twists and turns and all at a rattling good pace. Quickly becoming a must read series.
Mar 29, 2019 rated it liked it
With some reservations I enjoyed the first in this series, and after a bit
of humming and harring I decided to read the second. Some parts of it I found very entertaining, others less so. I think I am just not so taken with the main character ! So, in my view this book was an OK read, not more.
Roman Clodia
Dec 11, 2017 rated it it was ok
This feels like a romp of an adventure rather than anything more serious: there are multiple storylines of a murdered physicist, an IRA bomber and a kidnapped Jewish child, with quick-switch scenes, often of just a page or less, which makes this feel like a film treatment.

Characters are pretty standard: the heroic history professor, the glamorous Hollywood actress, the traitors and conspirators - and, of course, everyone hates and fears the Nazis with a historical hindsight that doesn't necessa
Ivana - Diary of Difference
The Tom Wilde Series
#1 Corpus - Not Read Yet
#2 Nucleus - Not Read Yet
#3 Nemesis - ★★★★★

Adding this to my TBR because I loved Nemesis!
Susan in Perthshire
Mar 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adventure
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Keith Currie
Feb 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Splitting up

The plot is simple. It is 1939 and war seems inevitable. The Germans decide to destroy Britain’s atomic capability by destroying the Cavendish laboratory in Cambridge.

I enjoyed this Tom Wilde novel more than Corpus, the first in the series. There was a satisfyingly complex narrative and a good number of twists, turns and unexpected surprises. There was less gratuitous violence also, but enough to keep the narrative exciting, yet plausible.

Tom Wilde and Lydia Morris are very personabl
Feb 12, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: library
A good idea for a story, but spoilt by the lack of editing. Why do authors and editors think that 15 words is good, when 10 will do?
Jan 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What. A. Ride. And I’m not talking about Tom Wilde’s Motorcycle at its top speed!

Staying with the subject of speed for a moment, considering the exhilarating twists, turns and the evolving conspiracies, the plot holds the road magnificently. The sheer intensity of the scheming Professor Wilde wades into is 100% brilliance served neat, just like his whiskey.

As this is 1939 it naturally forecasts the imminent threat of physical conflict and yet the focus of “Nucleus” is to oppose intellectual comb
Aug 05, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A big improvement on the 1st book of the Tom Wilde series which features the main characters from Book 1 - American born history professor Tom Wilde, his partner Lydia and enigmatic British secret service agent, Eaton.

The plot revolves around Britain's atom bomb project in the months before the outbreak of World War II, with the action switching between Berlin and Cambridge's Cavendish Laboratory. The story zips along with all manner of characters on or against the side of the angels. There's an
I thoroughly enjoyed Corpus, the first book in the Tom Wilde series set in 1930s Cambridge, and have been waiting for about a year to read this next book. Did it live up to my expectations? Yes and no!

It was great to be back in Cambridge with Tom Wilde, but I must admit that I was rather disappointed that Lydia, his lady friend, and partner in crime, wasn’t involved in his adventures at home. She was featured in the book, just not in a way I was expecting.

Once again there was so much I didn’t kn
Wilde Sky
Sep 07, 2018 rated it it was ok
A tale of spies / academics set before WWII.

The plot / storyline was probably reasonable, but the writing was so clunky that I struggled to finish this book.
Mar 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great book, made even better by being based in and around Cambridge where I work (but during WW2)
Jun 25, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A good twisty thriller set in and around 1930s Cambridge just before war is declared. It's always fun to recognise local places in a book😊
Stephen Harpham
Jan 02, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2021
Great read. Liked his first book. This was better.
Melisa Broadbent
Jan 16, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to Emily at Bonnier Zaffre for sending me a review copy of the book and for asking me to participate on the blog tour.

Wow – if you like your books to be fast paced and full of action whilst also throwing in the threat of war, then this is the book for you. The much anticipated follow up to Corpus, finds us catching up with Professor Tom Wilde and some characters you will recognise from the previous story.

Set in pre-war 1939, Europe is on the brink of war and the race is on with who can
I received a free copy of this book from Readers First in exchange for an honest review.

I was a little disappointed in this one, based on the cover image being of the Nazi Iron Cross i was expecting them to be the central characters, but it almost entirely took place in Cambridge and had next to no Germans in it at all.

I thought this was going to be about the race for creating the first nuclear weapon, which it was to a certain degree, but only in parallel, the events of the book take place dur
Linda Hepworth
Jan 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This engaging, fast-moving story starts in the spring of 1939, just three months before the start of World War II. In Europe there is rising tension about what is happening in Nazi Germany, with its continuing invasions of other countries and its persecution of Jews. Most people in Britain believe that there will be a war and people carrying gas masks are a common sight on the streets. However, in Cambridge the partying associated with the university’s traditional May Balls goes ahead, albeit ag ...more
Jan 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I thoroughly enjoyed this book and for once didn't race through it to the end, I savoured it. Reading 50 or so pages and then setting it aside to let the themes percolate in the grey matter before picking it back up again an hour or two later. There is just so much going on between these covers that you run the risk of careening off the cliff edge if you don't take a step back.

The telling is wonderfully evocative of the time and place without descending in to farce. It is both a very modern tel
Sandra Danby
Aug 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Summer 1939. Germany has invaded Czechoslovakia. Jews desperate to flee Nazi persecution queue outside embassies in Berlin in the hope of getting a visa, while sending their children on Kindertransport to Britain. In the UK, the IRA’s bombing campaign continues. Scientists in Europe and America are researching atomic fission, and also at the Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge. It is a vulnerable, combustible time. This is the setting for ‘Nucleus’ by Rory Clements, second in his trilogy of histor ...more
Clemens Schoonderwoert
Apr 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This very thrilling and suspenseful book is the 2nd volume of the "Tom Wilde series" from the wonderful great author Rory Clements.
It's another exciting spy thriller, and very entertaining and spellbound, so much so that it keeps the reader gripped from start to finish.
Story-telling is as ever of a top-notch quality, for the author certainly has the ability as in this series, as well he did in the John Shakespeare series, to keep you captivated with his story, and this time it's the dark and glo
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Rory Clements has had a long and successful newspaper career, including being features editor and associate editor of Today, editor of the Daily Mail's Good Health Pages, and editor of the health section at the Evening Standard. He now writes full-time in an idyllic corner of Norfolk, England. ...more

Other books in the series

Tom Wilde (5 books)
  • Corpus (Tom Wilde #1)
  • Nemesis (Tom Wilde, #3)
  • Hitler's Secret (Tom Wilde #4)
  • A Prince and A Spy (Tom Wilde, #5)

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