cover image The Paris Spy: A Maggie Hope Mystery

The Paris Spy: A Maggie Hope Mystery

Susan Elia MacNeal. Bantam, $26 (320p) ISBN 978-0-399-59380-2

Set in 1942, MacNeal’s engrossing seventh Maggie Hope mystery (after 2016’s The Queen’s Accomplice) takes the American-raised British spy, disguised as a fashionable Irish lady, to Nazi-occupied Paris. There Maggie searches for her German half-sister, Elise Hess, a Resistance fighter, and for fellow agent Erica Calvert, whose coded transmissions have raised concern—and whose mission is vital to the success of the Allies’ planned Normandy invasion. Unbeknownst to Maggie, one of her colleagues is a double agent. A chance encounter with designer Coco Chanel brings an entrée to an elegant world of ballet and masked balls in which Parisian aristocrats mingle with German officers. These scenes raise complex moral questions and showcase subtle acts of resistance. Those unfamiliar with previous novels might be confused by Maggie’s family background and Elise’s choices, but series fans should appreciate the development in their relationship. A fast-paced climax leads to an ending that will leave readers eagerly awaiting the next installment. Agent: Victoria Skurnick, Levine Greenberg Literary. (Aug.)