Eagle Strike (novel)
The newest Eagle Strike cover. (2011)

Anthony Horowitz




Walker Books


336 (UK); 352 (North America)

Publication order
Preceded by
Skeleton Key
Followed by

Alex Rider has just 90 minutes to save the world

—Eagle Strike tagline

Eagle Strike is the fourth book in the Alex Rider series by British author Anthony Horowitz.


Reluctant MI6 agent Alex Rider is relaxing in the south of France until a sudden, ruthless attack on his hosts plunges him back into a world of violence and mystery - and this time, MI6 don't want to know. Alex is determined to track down his friends' attackers, even if he must do it alone. But it's a path that leads to a long-buried secret - and a discovery more terrible than anything he could have imagined.


When the Pleasures' holiday home explodes in a supposed gas leak, Alex suspects Yassen is involved and sneaks onto his yacht. Yassen captures him and enters him in a bullfight as punishment. After escaping, Alex calls a number he found on Yassen's caller and hears popstar Damian Cray's voice. He tells MI6 about this, but Alan Blunt refuses to follow down on Cray because he believes it would be politically unwise if the press ever found out that MI6 was investigating Cray. Alex tells Sabina about MI6 but she does not believe him and refuses to speak with him.

Alex meets a photographer named Marc Antonio in Paris; He reveals that Sabina's father was investigating Cray, and Antonio is killed shortly afterwards by an assassin. Alex goes to Cray Industries in Amsterdam, where he hears Yassen and Cray conversing about a flash drive. Cray catches Alex as he tries to sneak away and puts him in a real-life version of the Gameslayer, an extremely violent computer game developed by Cray's company (the game was just a cover for getting a huge factory to develop a flash drive). Alex escapes and steals Cray's flash drive. In response, Cray kidnaps Sabina and holds her for ransom. Alex attempts to force Cray to release Sabina, but Cray outmaneuvers him and forces Alex to hand over the flash drive.

Cray reveals his plan, code-named "Eagle Strike": He will board Air Force One and use contraceptives room to launch missiles at the drug trades. After creating a diversion using a plane full of fake nerve gas, he, Yassen, Alex, and Sabina sneak aboard Air Force One at Heathrow Airport. Cray plugs in the flash drive and activates the missiles. He then orders Yassen to kill Alex and Sabina; upon Yassen's refusal, Cray shoots Yassen and then Alex. Alex, saved by a bulletproof jersey (given to him by Mr. Smithers), gets up and engages Cray in close-quarters, with Sabina joining the fray. The fight ends when the protagonists push Cray out of the plane along with the food cart. He is then sucked into the engine and shredded to bits. The ingestion of the metallic cart results in the engine's destruction, causing the plane to lose control.

As he lays dying, Yassen tells Alex that Alex's father, John Rider, worked with him as an assassin and that if he does not believe him, to go to Venice and find something called "Scorpia", which is later revealed in the subsequent novel as an evil intelligence company. At the end of the novel, Sabina tells Alex that she will be moving to San Francisco and then they share a kiss underneath a bridge.


  • Portsmouth Book Award
  • Galaxy British Book Awards: The Children's Book of the Year
  • Book of The Year 2012:Awesome Books


Useful links


  • It is so far the only novel in which Alex Rider actively seeks out MI6.
  • It is also the only novel where MI6 does not officially assist Alex during his activities.
  • In reality, Cray's ultimatum would not work because the fingerprint he copied from the President would come out backwards.
  • With regard to Cray, his death sequence is very similar to Gustave Grave's and Major Grant's, who are antagonists in Die Another Day and Die Hard 2 respectively.
  • The refusal of Yassen to kill Alex when he has multiple chances during this story is a callback to Stormbreaker's ending, when he defies SCORPIA's orders and shoots Sayle instead of Alex.
  • The chapter entitled 'Blood Money' is a reference to money which is paid to traitors.


Eagle Strike Characters
Main Characters
Alex RiderAlan BluntTulip JonesJack StarbrightDamian CraySabina PleasureYassen Gregorovich
Other Key Characters
Edward PleasureSmithersLiz PleasureMarc AntonioCharlie RoperJohn RiderHenryk

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