Publication Date: February 26, 2015
Formats: eBook, Paperback
Genre: Historical Fiction
Paul Letters likes to employ dark irony. I enjoy the cleverness of irony in the context of satire. In a serious novel dark irony intensifies tragic events and gives them more impact. I appreciate that this is the author's goal. Dark irony shocks readers. It makes a dark book feel even darker. Those who are familiar with my reviews know that I don't prefer dark fiction. Yet whether Dyta is in Warsaw, Paris, London or Prague she is always an inspiring element in this book. She burns brightly in the darkness that surrounds her. I always hoped as I was reading A Chance Kill that she would ultimately prevail regardless of the tribulations that she experienced.
I did notice that this author has a tendency to utilize expository lumps for the purpose of characterization as if he wanted to get characterization out of the way so he could focus on action. For me, action scenes that contain little in the way of characterization seem very dry. If I'm not reviewing a book, my normal habit is to skim the details. I had to fight that proclivity while Tom, the RAF pilot male protagonist, was battling Messerschmitts.
Both the protagonists are well-intentioned people with blind spots based on assumptions. They grow beyond their assumptions to become stronger individuals. The crucible of war also shapes their lives in ways that they never expected. Tom is not as unusual as Dyta, but he is courageous and tries to be principled.
Let me point out that although this book contains romance, it definitely isn't part of the romance genre. Letters is under no obligation to provide his readers with a HEA ending. From a relationship perspective, this book ends on a cliffhanger note. There will be a sequel, and we will presumably find out whether the romance survives.
Since I am interested in aviation, I wanted to find out more about the planes that play a part in A Chance Kill. I was particularly intrigued by the RAF's Mosquitos which were known as Mossies. They were faster and more maneuverable than anything that the Germans had, and they were made of wood. Here's an article about them on Wikipedia. I was so impressed with them that I'm giving this book an extra bike.