Leila Meacham. Grand Central, $28 (576p) ISBN 978-1-5387-3222-9
In this fast-paced and enjoyable WWII espionage tale, Meacham (Roses) takes readers to 1942 Nazi-occupied Paris to follow five American spies as they attempt to gather information to assist Allied and French Resistance forces. Americans Brad, Bridgette, Bucky, Chris, and Victoria have been recruited as spies for the CIA’s Office of Special Services. After undergoing rigorous training, the eclectic crew—a professional fencer, a fashion designer, a fly fisherman, the son of a wealthy businessman, and a Texan with German roots—meet for the first time in Paris. The spies, collectively called Dragonfly, find themselves in dangerous situations from the off; communicating in code, they must form their plans in secret as they attempt to blend in to a cold, starving, terrified Paris. Each takes up employment with potential collaborators, working as tutors, listening in at boarding houses, and chatting between casts of a fly-fishing reel for information to send back to the OSS. After Victoria is captured and the others fear their code may be broken, the Dragonfly mission comes apart and all members must fend for themselves. While the set up and ending are both thrilling, the five spies are separated throughout the middle. Their isolation, Meacham’s close concentration on each character’s particular struggles to survive in isolation, and the drawn-out foreshadowing that one of the spies will be shot slows the momentum leading to the gripping finale. Despite this, Meacham’s nail-biting tale will please fans looking for an intricate story of spycraft and deception. (July)
Reviewed on : 04/29/2019
Release date: 07/09/2019
Genre: Fiction
Compact Disc - 978-1-5491-5316-7
Hardcover - 864 pages - 978-1-5387-3398-1
Compact Disc - 978-1-5491-5009-8
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