Mightier than the Sword opens with an IRA bomb exploding during the M. V. Buckingham's maiden voyage across the Atlantic-but how many passengers lose their lives?
When Harry Clifton visits his publisher in New York, he learns that he has been elected as the new president of English PEN and immediately launches a campaign for the release of a fellow author, Anatoly Babakov, who's imprisoned in Siberia. Babakov's crime? Writing a book called Uncle Joe, a devastating insight into what it was like to work for Stalin. So determined is Harry to see Babakov released and the book published, that he puts his own life in danger.