If you read me, you know I adore the writing of Susan Elia MacNeal and her Maggie Hope series. I assumed this was the next in the series — and I was wrong! This is a standalone title, telling the story of mother-daughter spies in Los Angeles who work to uncover Nazis who are trying to build a following in America. I almost could not believe this was based on fact, but it is. I found it fascinating and, not surprisingly, well-written (as all Susan’s novels are). However, what I can not let go of is that, while I was reading, I found so many parallels to today and kept thinking about how easy it would be for all this to happen again (or could it be happening now??). The most stark image in my mind from this book is that the people who were really heinous/racist/horrible were actually quite charming and friendly on the surface. Lovely people in lovely homes that were welcoming and helpful to Veronica and Vi. It’s a reminder of how the biggest villains don’t necessarily look like the ones in the movies. They may look like the people next door.
Thank you for my copy through Net Galley. This will most probably make my “Best Books” list for 2022!
A mother and daughter find the courage to go undercover after stumbling upon a Nazi cell in Los Angeles during the early days of World War II—a tantalizing novel from the New York Times bestselling author of the Maggie Hope series
“A stirring standalone thriller . . . Susan Elia MacNeal’s page-turning prose is as entertaining as ever—I was riveted from beginning to end.”—Kate Quinn, author of The Alice Network
June 1940. France has fallen to the Nazis, and Britain may be next—but to many Americans, the war is something happening “over there.” Veronica Grace has just graduated from college; she and her mother, Violet, are looking for a fresh start in sunny Los Angeles. After a blunder cost her a prestigious career opportunity in New York, Veronica is relieved to take a typing job in L.A.—only to realize that she’s working for one of the area’s most vicious propagandists.
Overnight, Veronica is exposed to the dark underbelly of her new home, where German Nazis are recruiting Americans for their devastating campaign. After the FBI dismisses the Graces’ concerns, Veronica and Violet decide to call on an old friend, who introduces them to L.A.’s anti-Nazi spymaster.
At once, the women go undercover to gather enough information about the California Reich to take to the authorities. But as the news of Pearl Harbor ripples through the United States, and President Roosevelt declares war, the Grace women realize that the plots they’re investigating are far more sinister than they feared—and even a single misstep could cost them everything.
Inspired by the real mother-daughter spy duo who foiled Nazi plots in Los Angeles during WWII, Mother Daughter Traitor Spy is a powerful portrait of family, duty, and deception that raises timeless questions about America—and what it means to have courage in the face of terror.
This book publishes 9/20/22