The Viney Agency


Yves BonaveroYves Bonavero was born and educated in Paris. He worked in the City of London for fourteen years and became the controlling shareholder and CEO of the Man Group, a leading commodity trading and fund management institution. At the age of 37 he sold his holdings and retired from the City to spend time with his wife and four children, and founded Bonaparte Films. He also cultivated his interest in languages and philosophy, and graduated from Oxford University in 1999 with a First in philosophy and German.

Yves’ s first novel, Something in the Sea, was published by Bloomsbury in 2006.

“A brilliantly creepy  and worryingly enthralling debut’’ Daily Mirror

“An astonishing and gripping story” The Guardian

Something of an ancient mariner saga…curiously hypnotic” Literary Review

A chilling psychological thriller by a debut writer of whom we will certainly hear more” Daily Mail

“Will keep you mesmerised until you have to separate the smokescreen from the punchline.” Time Out

“A damn good read…ends with a brilliantly written stream of consciousness, leaving you itching to know more.” The Oxford Times

The plot is tight and exciting, and the writing has great authority… I was so gripped by the story that there was no way I was going to stop... the framing device of the story is absolutely wonderful; simultaneously original and traditional. I enjoyed it enormously.’ Sara Maitland

‘It kept me turning the pages…terrific...I like the premise too… the device of the story within a story is very effective….I enjoyed it a lot.’ Patrick Neate

In his new novel The Nuremberg Enigma, Yves Bonavero tests and subverts our view of history; then, with a deft weaving of fact and fiction, he guides us towards an explosive denouement in this riveting, historical thriller. The novel’s hero, Peter Birkett, is based on Michael Howard, a real-life T Force Intelligence Officer. Michael, now 90, had a life-long ambition to see T Force given its proper place in history. Over a ten-year period, Yves worked with him to uncover his memories and records, and pay tribute to him in what Michael himself describes as ‘a riveting historical thriller.’

He explores what if, out of all the facts historians have painstakingly established over the years, a couple had been different – but only marginally so? Would these mini-tweaks be capable of producing world-changing consequences, or is history pre-determined? He says 'I wanted the structure of the story to be radically different from other alternative history novels which I admire such as The Portage to San Cristobal of A.H. by George Steiner, Fatherland by Robert Harris or The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick. I wanted to explore the Nuremberg trials, the thought processes of the judges and the ethical dilemmas facing well-intentioned individuals. Which, out of the cold-war realpolitik and nascent dream of international justice, would win the day?’ The novel reflects his love of historical research, and his work supporting human rights for over half a century: founding in 1990, with his wife, the AB Charitable Trust makes grants to charities working with prisoners, refugees and asylum-seekers; helping to establish the Amnesty Human Rights Centre in 2001; and endowing the Bonavero Institute of Human Rights at Oxford University.


Yves BonaveroBerlin, April 1945. The Führer is missing and the hunt is on - could Hitler be alive?

The Reich is imploding. Soon, an International Military Tribunal will convene in Nuremberg to pass judgement on the Nazi elite. It is beset by divisions between the victorious Allies. A rampant Göring is running rings around the prosecution. Anyway, what could this trial possibly mean without Hitler in the dock?

Against the backdrop of a convulsed Europe, Peter Birkett – the youngest captain in the British Army assigned to the mysterious and all-powerful T Force – and Captain Elizaveta Terisova – Stalin’s favourite Komsomol maiden – are confronted with the horror of war, the moral and physical dangers of occupation and the peculiar plight of women in combat zones. Smart, resourceful and ruthless, both are deeply conflicted, struggling with their own demons, and baffled by the realpolitik masquerading as international law. Which of their moral principles, if any, can they afford to uphold? What will become of nineteen-year-old Susette, Peter Birkett’s German girlfriend?

In a world of spies and doppelgängers, where identifiers such as dental records and fingerprints only add to the confusion, Captain Peter Birkett is having to make life-and-death decisions which not only challenge his moral certainties, but may change the course of history…

Michael Howard and T Force
– The fictional character of Peter Birkett was inspired by the extraordinary true story of Michael Howard, who in 1946, aged 19, was sent into the British zone of occupied Germany as part of Target ('T') Force, the special army unit set up to locate and remove to the UK German industrial and intellectual capacity. He was soon appointed Intelligence Officer of the unit covering the ruins of the Ruhr, work that brought him into direct conflict both with resentful ex-Nazis and with the Russians - erstwhile allies, now Cold War rivals - who made regular incursions into the British zone in search of the spoils of war. Meanwhile, he fell in love for the first time, with Margret, the daughter of the German doctor in whose house he was billeted. Michael Howard, now 90, lives in Sevenoaks.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: The Nuremberg Enigma, Lark and Frogmouth Books, 2016; Something in the Sea, Bloomsbury, 2006.