Sunday, January 24, 2016

Louise's Chance: A 1940s Spy Thriller Set in Wartime Washington (A Louise Pearlie Mystery) by Sarah R. Shaber: A Book Review

Louise's Chance: A 1940s Spy Thriller Set in Wartime Washington (A Louise Pearlie Mystery)
Author: Sarah R. Shaber
Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystery, Thriller
Publisher: Severn House
Release Date: 2015
Pages: 192
Source: Netgalley/Publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Synopsis: 1940s, Washington DC. Government girl Louise gets her big chance, when she is tasked with recruiting German POWs for a secret mission inside Nazi Germany

     Government girl Louise Pearlie has a new job inside the OSS – the Office of Strategic Services: recruiting German prisoners-of-war for a secret mission inside Nazi Germany. It’s a big chance for her, and Louise hopes she can finally escape her filing and typing duties. With the job comes two new colleagues: Alice Osborne, a propaganda expert, and Merle Ellison, a forger from Texas who just happens to speak fluent German.

      But when the three arrive at Fort Meade camp, to interview the first German POWs to arrive there, their mission is beset by complications. Only one of the prisoners speaks English, the army officer in charge of the camp is an alcoholic and two prisoners disappeared on the ship bringing the Germans to the states. Were their deaths suicide? Officially, yes. But Louise can’t help but have her doubts . . .

     My Review: Louise is a spy, and she has been given the task to recruit German prisoners of war to go on a secret mission in Nazi Germany. When she arrives at the POW camp, she finds that her mission is complicated when they discover two POWs were murdered on the ship to America. This means that the murderer is still roaming inside the camp. Can they find the killer and bring him to justice? Most of all, can they recruit the best POWs for their secret mission?

     Louise is good at keeping secrets. Indeed, upon meeting her, it seems that she has some secrets up her sleeves. Yet, she is hard-working and is really good at her job. She is observant and pays attention to the slightest details that most people miss. She is caring and likes to help her friends. However she is stubborn. She can also be very judgmental and sometimes her emotions clouds her reasoning. When she is clouded by her prejudices, she relies on her friends to help her see reason.

     Overall, the story is fast-paced and the mystery is predictable. The story was filled with likable characters. The setting, which is mostly set in an American POW camp, is very intriguing. I thought it was beautifully written like any other WWII military novel. This novel was heavily researched and I liked the historical details in the novel. While it did not have all that much pulse-pounding action in the novel, there was a lot of suspenseful build-up. I recommend this novel to anyone that loves WWII novels, and for those who are interested in historical mysteries that feature a female sleuth.

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

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