As a founder member of Mystery Women in 1997, promoting Crime Fiction has always been my passion.
Following the closure of Mystery Women, a new group was formed on 30th January 2012 promoting crime fiction.
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by Matador, 28 November 2017. ISBN 978-1788039-88-8
Doug Thompson has produced a fascinating story.
His protagonist is Sally Jardine-Fell who is in Holloway Prison awaiting trial
for murder in 1946. The vis Tim is an Italian in London. Sally
tells the story of her experiences in the War to her lawyers and remembers many
further interesting details as she sits in her cell.
Sally went from a privileged upper-class
life in London to working as a secretary in a factory in the North of
England. Her husband has been killed right at the beginning of WW2 on a
reconnaissance flight over France and she feels rootless and
dissatisfied. She finds herself being tested and directed as she is
recruited by Special Operations Executive and sent to Italy as a spy. She
is aiming to get close to Count Ciano, Mussolini’s Foreign Minuster.
Her adventures in Italy are amazing
as she, firstly, pursues her allotted tasks and, secondly, wanders through
Italy after the Germans take over in Italy. Her memories are very clear
and her stopping points in Italy and her chance met companions prove to be extremely
varied. Her fears that there are double agents operating seem to be
accurate. The story of her life as revealed to the lawyers reaches a
conclusion for the trial. It is obvious as she relates what happened to
her and her own reactions that the lawyers find her free-thinking attitude hard
to accept and that they will gloss over some aspects to give an impression to
the Court that is more conventional.
This is a clever story which
quickly engulfs the reader in Sally’s experiences as she struggles for survival
in the teeth of life threatening dangers. The tension grows as the story
reaches a climax.
knowledge of Italian history is very good which is not surprising since Doug is
a former professor of Italian literature and history.
Jennifer S. Palmer
Professor of Modern Italian language, history and literature, draws on his
intimate knowledge of Italy to write a lively novel with a feisty protagonist
and colourful cast of supporting characters. The book will appeal to readers of
historically based fiction, those with an interest in Italy especially the war
Thompson has several previous books including nonfiction about Italy.
Jennifer PalmerThroughout my reading life crime
fiction has been a constant interest; I really enjoyed my 15 years as an
expatriate in the Far East, the Netherlands
& the USA
but occasionally the solace of closing my door to the outside world and sitting
reading was highly therapeutic. I now lecture to adults on historical topics
including Famous Historical Mysteries.