I read this book about Stalin’s last grim years and suspicious death while speculation briefly raged in the media about the death of Saddam Hussein and his replacement by a double or a sudden palace coup. Dictators are never allowed to die straightforwardly. Years later, speculation still surrounds the death of Adolf Hitler; Stalin’s death just over fifty years ago from a brain haemorrhage has more than a whiff of conspiracy. Was he killed? Was he allowed to die?