Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Louise's Dilemma by Sarah R. Shaber

Louise's DilemmaFirst of all, I haven't read the first two books in this series. However, it wasn't hard to get up to date. I didn't feel lost as I read this. Granted, I don't know all the back-story, but it's told in such a manner, you don't NEED to know every single person's history.

If you're wanting a romance, this isn't for you, but I ABSOLUTELY LOVED THIS STORY AND HEROINE.

The heroine is a widow now working in the OSS office, kinda like the CIA during WWII. She's an index card person who spends most of her time poring over suspicious material, such as the postcard in this book, but because she has special training, she gets to work with an FBI agent as they try to determine what the strange message on this card means.

The FBI agent is a jerk who introduces her as his assistant, treats her likes she's stupid, and oh, does this gal put him in his place! Probably my favorite part of the book, save for the ending, which just had me in utter heart-stopping suspense.

"You seem to have forgotten. I am not your assistant. I'm your colleague, your liaison with the Office of Strategic Services. It was our initial inquiry about a postcard from France mailed to Leroy Martin that brought us here. I am going with you to talk to the constable and everywhere else you intend to pursue this investigation. And if I feel it's necessary I'll ask my own questions."

The history in this is superb. The author has obviously done her homework. I really felt as though I were on the icy, crowded streets of an over-packed Washington, exhausted from the mandatory 48-hour work week, and dreading the bologna casserole rationing was going to force me to eat.

I also appreciated how the story took us to a more rural area where the citizens were angry about price control and tires and stuff. That's not something you read about often in WWII stories...and oh, the man and his dog. I did not know that dogs were drafted during the war, and I've read my share of stories of this time period. I love how these random facts were instilled into the story.

In a nutshell though: a postcard from France leads Louise to a small, hostile town where there's mysterious nighttime activity, murder, and a major breach of security. Louise's dilemmas throughout the story are 1. She's on the verge of a passionate affair with a foreign man, but if she follows her heart, she could lose her job. 2. She makes a mistake. Does she want to bring attention to it? Can she fix it in time?

Fabulously likable heroine. I appreciate how she doesn't feel a man is really worth losing everything over. It's a refreshing change from most heroines in books nowadays, who seem to need a man at all times and live and breathe solely for love and romance. Here we have a heroine who truly sees the bigger picture and isn't afraid of independence...even embraces it. Overall the book is exciting, suspenseful, and great in historical detail. I will read the rest of the series.

I received this via Netgalley.

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