cover image Playing It Safe: An Electra McDonnell Novel

Playing It Safe: An Electra McDonnell Novel

Ashley Weaver. Minotaur, $28 (272p) ISBN 978-1-250-88587-6

Weaver’s outstanding third Electra McDonnell adventure (after 2022’s The Key to Deceit) sees McDonnell, a former safecracking thief, take on a murky new assignment from British intelligence: she knows only that she’s expected to assume a new identity and leave behind her family in blitz-era London for the city of Sunderland. Shortly after arriving at her rooming house, McDonnell sees a man fall dead in the street. She quickly learns he’s part of the reason she’s been summoned: McDonnell’s assigning officer, Major Ramsey, informs her the man was part of an ID counterfeiting scheme that makes it possible for German spies to operate in England. Despite their different working approaches, Ellie and Ramsey go undercover as a couple and develop a plan to take down the mastermind behind the scheme. Weaver populates this bright, fast-paced thriller with engagingly flawed characters and breathless action. Readers will delight at the dynamic between the leads and look forward to future adventures. Agent: Ann Collette, Rees Literary. (May)