The Innocent Spy
(originally published as Stratton's War) (2008)
DI Ted Stratton, with the London police
undercover spy Diana Calthrop,
in 1940s London, England
Book # 1
Summary: Suspecting that the falling death of a silent screen star may have been the work of a notorious gangster, Detective Ted Stratton finds the case bizarrely linked to the internal espionage investigation of new undercover MI5 agent Diana Calthrop.
MBTB review: At first it seemed like I was reading two different books, alternating one chapter with Detective Ted Stratton and one chapter with unhappily married new undercover MI5 agent Diana Calthrop, both interesting enough. But I was expecting their storylines to converge and sure enough, they did.
The author has a very readable style and I was interested in the lives of the main characters as well as how they managed to find out what was going on - who really killed the aging silent film actress and why.
This is less a mystery than a World War II spy novel and nicely done historical fiction (for example, the characters deal so matter-of-factly with living in London during the nightly bombings)
I'll be watching for the next book: An Empty Death
* * * * * * * * * *
Not long ago, I enjoyed reading a mystery with a similar setting:
James R. Benn: Billy Boyle: a World War II mystery (2006) ****
Book # 1 with Billy Boyle, a Boston cop from a family of Boston cops, on the staff of distant relative, General Eisenhower
I also like David Roberts' series with Lord Edward Corinth, a jaded English aristocrat, and Verity Browne, a leftist journalist, set in 1930s England and Spain. See the entire series here.
The first two books in this series:
Sweet Poison (2000)
The Bones of the Buried (2001) ****
For more WWII mysteries, have a look through the Historical Mystery Fiction page for the 1940s. Click here for the 1940s. In the Period field, look for WWII or any year from 1940 to 1945. And if you're really keen, you'll check out their 1930's list as well.
some series descriptions from Stop, You're Killing Me!
posted by Sharon