Genre: Christian fiction; historical fiction; suspense; intrigue; WWII; espionage
Plot Summary: When the rich, beautiful Julie Harris finds herself a widow during the early days of WWII, she decides she needs to find out the truth about her late husband. Was their marriage a sham ever since they met? Was he true to her, or did he live a double life? The only way she can answer these questions is by going undercover herself, as one of America’s first agents of the war. Working in London, she gets to know a small circle of people who seem to be her friends. But who can she really trust?
My Book Review: It’s been a long time since I’ve ever read a book by Paul McCusker. I remember I loved his Passages series when I was a kid (spin-off novels from Adventures in Odyssey, which McCusker helped create). What would one of his novels for adults be like? This one grabbed my attention, as espionage always does!
I found that I enjoyed this suspense story very much. Although I suspected the one character all along, I was never quite sure enough and I kept going on the edge of my seat. Some great plot twists I didn’t see coming, and different love interests for our beautiful heroine that kept me guessing, too. 🙂
But more than that, I really learned a lot about England (esp. London) during the air raid bombings in 1940. I love fiction books that can teach me about a certain era, and this was definitely one of those. Everything from what civilian daily life was like, how they coped, their attitude during the most difficult of days, and the everyday heroes of the war such as the emergency volunteers, the doctors and nurses, and the priests. I even learned some things about Churchill. To confirm all of this, I ended up watching a documentary on Netflix (“Winston Churchill: Walking With Destiny”- narrated by Ben Kingsley) that went over the same timeline during which this book is set and I got to hear and see photographs of the very things “Julie” would have witnessed. I also watched a brief documentary on the first spy training camp the US set up in Canada, where our heroine also would have been sent to. It made the book feel all the more real and I know it was well researched.
Some drawbacks to the book are that some readers may find it predictable. Sometimes I wanted it to be a tad more cloak and daggerish, but that’s probably just me being unrealistic! I did find it somewhat unbelievable that Julie would run off to be an agent to spy against the very people her husband supposedly sympathized with, so soon after his death. That part just didn’t make a lot of sense to me.
But I still enjoyed it, and stayed up late nights trying to finish it in time to send it back to the library. Those are the good ones, aren’t they? So, if you’re up for burning the midnight oil, I think you’ll like this one!
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