About the audio production: **Just my 2 cents** First off was my confusion on narration: the listing on audible says Wanda McCaddon but the intro of ..Show More »narrator says Donada Peters I guess they are one in the same but then the intro and the listing should use the same name. Wanda/Donada was a good narrator there were times when slipping in between the British and American accents didn’t work well for me, there were times they were kind of a cross between the two and it was hard to tell who was talking. But I did enjoy her narration as whole.
This book was not what I was expecting; I didn’t expect it to be a spy/war/mystery/family secrets story all rolled into a really good book. The setting was fascinating; the beginning of WWII and with people like the US Ambassador Joseph Kennedy who lost his post for being a Nazi sympathizer and an anti-Semite which I looked up and was a bit shocked to find this all to be true. And of course Winston Churchill it was fun to hear about his pets running rough shod over 10 Downing (I looked that up too and found it to be true). So this book was well researched and made me want to look things up and as I’ve said before that’s what makes a good historical fiction novel.
I really liked Maggie she did remind me a little of Maisie Dobbs but that could just be the setting and the fact that she is a strong independent woman in a time that was a bit frowned upon. I also liked the fact that Maggie was raised an American but by the end of this book has been found to be a valuable asset for the England. There are at times a lot of characters to keep track of and I did get confused a couple times as to who was who so I hope in the next book this will be tightened up a bit. I do look forward to reading more of Maggie.
I felt this book was kind of a Cozy Spy Thriller it had all the great elements of a good spy novel plus the best of a cozy mystery. I look forward to more by this author.
I found the first novel in this series dull and anachronistic, with over-the-top action near the end, but I hoped that, like much series fiction, char..Show More »acter and storyline might be stronger as the series (and author) developed.
Book 2 has some good historical background, but it's delivered more pedantically. Modern YA exchanges continue among the YA characters - other parts of the the novel are more period authentic -- except for some lapses in scene/dialogue such as when King George is teaching Queen E how to shoot a pistol on the back lawn of Buckingham Palace - with Hitler on the target-- and Churchill wanders up says something like, "Between you and me, we may have won the Battle of Britain, but we can't rule out invasion yet." Some of the more obvious history background (King Edward abdicated to marry Mrs Simpson!) is spelled out in way too much detail - so lovers of period fiction will be bored.
I am a large consumer of 19th and 20th C historical mysteries of all types, but I'll pass on future instalments of this one unless I read some solid reviews first.
It IS a good PG listen, however, and that is worth some praise! And if I were younger I might identify more with the main characters' concerns to get past the novel's weaknesses.
You'll either love or hate the narration: The narrator is obviously talented, but the production choices seem to me questionable. The style is much too theatrical (and vowels not Brit enough) for my ears -- too staged a performance. Wanda MacAdam/Doneda Peters from Book 1 was a better choice to my ears, but like Wanda, my ears are a little old for this novel.