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One of the loci is the capital city Sofia and its vicinity where classic and classy buildings co-exist with bland, Stalinesque architecture. The young man is the invisible mastermind and puppeteer of a wide dragnet cast by the KGB, aiming at weeding out political corruption in Party circles for specific, twisted reasons.

In this bucolic village, embraced by the majestic mountain, doors are never locked and last names not needed. History violently galloped in eons ago, leaving a painful open wound, then let it to its devices.


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Later on the same village, with its ancient history rooted in the daily life of its inhabitants, becomes a scene of clashes and renewed mayhem. It is the arena of immense real drama, where honor, dignity and pride collide with brutal contemporary events, forcing serious decisions, repeating ancient history and bringing it to a complete circle. The last subplot develops around the ancient resort city of Varna, on the Black Sea coast ruled by a promiscuous first secretary and his equally unscrupulous, profligate wife. Ancient myths and present day celebrations mingle into an explosive muddle of carnality, violence and death, leading to the ultimate demise of the First regional couple.

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Set up a giveaway. Pages with related products. See and discover other items: There's a problem loading this menu right now. Get fast, free shipping with Amazon Prime. Your recently viewed items and featured recommendations. View or edit your browsing history. Get to Know Us. He , Ju 88 and Ju 52 pilots gained experience of landing on soft ground, cut with ruts and boulders. The British followed events from Bletchley Park through Ultra , made easier by German willingness to make routine use of radio communication. Four British minesweepers en route from Archangelsk were diverted to investigate and reached Isfjorden on 19 October.

After 38 supply flights, Dr Albrecht Moll and three men arrived to spend the winter of — transmitting weather reports.

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The blanket of snow could also cover holes, into which a wheel could fall, potentially to damage the undercarriage or propeller. The main wheels quickly accumulated a drift of packed snow in front of them and the aircraft almost nosed over. The ten crew and passengers joined the ground party, who welcomed them having been alone for six months; the Ju 88 pilot was warned off by a flare and returned to Banak. Major Amherst Whatman , a Polar explorer and signals specialist, repaired and operated the wireless set but it broke down on the journey to Iceland and was not reliable for the rest of the voyage.

The ships hugged the Polar ice, with little risk of being seen by Luftwaffe aircraft, once north-east of Jan Mayen. The ice breaking was delayed until after midnight on 14 May and parties were sent to scout Barentsburg on the east shore and the Finneset peninsula. A Ju 88 flew along Isfiorden, also at 5: Barentsburg was only a few hundred yards across the ice and plenty of food was found because it was the Svalbard custom to stock up before winter.

The local swine herd has been slaughtered during Gauntlet and the arctic cold had preserved the meat; wild duck could be plundered for eggs and an infirmary was also found, still stocked with dressings for the wounded.

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Ju 88 and He bombers returned on 15 May but the survivors took cover in mine shafts. Because of the remoteness of Svalbard, the inevitable frequent grounding of aircraft during bad weather and the troubles encountered by Operation Fritham, the Admiralty rejected the idea. Joubert also proposed to send a force of torpedo-bombers to Vaenga but this was vetoed by the Admiralty for lack of aircraft. Glen predicted that the German weather party would be replaced by an automatic weather reporting device and that the Luftwaffe would increase the number of weather reconnaissance flights over the Arctic.

The Admiralty decided to press on; Fritham was to be terminated and replaced by Operation Gearbox. To avoid another disaster, the occupation of Spitzbergen was to remain under the command of Norwegian government forces but the Navy would be responsible for delivering supplies and the trips were to be synchronised with outbound PQ convoys. Tim Healy, to brief Vice-Admiral S.

Healy and Glen described the pier at Barentsburg, which was silted up but had a crane and said that ice floes might float past in a southerly breeze and Healy agreed to take some vertical photographs of the pier. Glen and Croft were due to return to Spitzbergen on 26 June and were going to signal to Manchester when it arrived with Eclipse on 1 July, with a report of the latest Luftwaffe activity. P-Peter took off from Sullom Voe at 1: The ice and weather reports were transmitted and P-Peter took off at There was no snow around Longyearbyen but tracks could be seen near the airstrip, which were followed to an aircraft near a hut with piles of equipment and a lorry nearby.

The Catalina crew dropped a message to the ground party as they flew back and set a middling course for Shetland and Iceland, ignoring the itinerary for Jan Mayen. A Ju 88 flew to the island and landed but damaged its propellers as it taxied, stranding the crew and increasing the German party to 18 men.


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  4. Luftwaffe aircraft flew to Spitzbergen each day but were warned off each time and the Germans thought about using floatplanes. The east end of Isfjorden and Advent Bay were too full of drifting ice and the idea was dropped. In the midnight sun 20 April — 22 August as mid-summer approached, the ice further west near the Allied positions cleared faster than at the German eastern end of the fiord.

    On 30 June, the party sent a message that the airstrip was dry enough for Junkers Ju 52 aircraft and supply flights resumed. The aircraft were watched by a Norwegian party which had gone on an abortive expedition to destroy the German headquarters at the Hans Lund Hut. On clear days the German pilots flew direct over the mountains and on cloudy and misty days, when heavily laden, took the coast route past Barentsburg.

    Operation Southerly Breeze

    The ships arrived at Seidisfjord in Iceland on 28 June and met the pilot and navigator of Catalina P-Peter, who had flown the special reconnaissance to Spitzbergen, to be briefed. The cruiser delayed departure until 30 June to appear part of the escort force of PQ 17, if sighted by a U-boat near Jan Mayen. The Polar ice formed an inverted funnel, with the left side, south of Jan Mayen, curving north-east to just north of Isfjorden and the right side, south of Bear Island, curving north-west to the southern entrance to Isfjorden.

    The ships steamed northwards up the funnel and then turned east to approach Isfjorden from the west. Eclipse was refuelled on 1 July, during a thick fog and at 8: Off Barentsburg at noon, the ships received a welcome signal from Fritham Force that a Luftwaffe aircraft flew a daily reconnaissance at 3: The pier was too silted to moor and the ships kept their engines running and the crews at anti-aircraft stations as ship's boats, motorboats, a motor dinghy, a pinnace , cutters and whalers made round trips in six hours, unloading the Norwegians and the supplies, including short-wave wireless, Bofors 40 mm anti-aircraft guns, skis, sledges and other Arctic warfare equipment.

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    Unlike Sverdrup, whose brief 2was primarily economic, Ullring had been ordered to re-claim Norwegian sovereignty over the Svalbard islands and found a bombed settlement with frozen livestock scattered around, under a pall of smoke from the smouldering coal dumps.

    Cranes were pulled back from the quay, boats hidden and the stores camouflaged. To the dismay of the Gearbox party, their Colt machine-guns were found to have no ammunition belts, leaving only the 20 mm Oerlikons and M2 Browning machine-guns. On 3 July, an aircraft was heard flying along Isfjorden and back again after an hour, thought to have landed at Longyearbyen; later a Ju 52 was seen following the same route.

    By 5 July four Oerlikons and four Brownings had been installed and the gun crews rehearsed.