Wednesday, March 6, 2013


Mr. Churchill's Secretary  by Susan Elia MacNeal

I enjoyed this historical fiction thriller/romance/mystery.  The main character, Maggie Hope, an English girl raised in America by a maiden aunt, becomes Winston Churchill’s typist after a murder. Although a mathematical genius, she is relegated to typing when she applies for a job as a cryptologist for the British government at the beginning of the Battle of Britain.

 After setting up the situation, the plot moves along quickly and is engaging. This is obviously the introduction for a series of war time thrillers with Maggie as the girl who saves England with her intelligence and pluck. 

Maggie and her roommates are carefully fleshed out, but the male characters quickly became confusing simply because they were not clearly differentiated.  The “romance” is not as well done as the mystery, possibly because I couldn’t keep the males straight – was it John or David who was falling for her? And then there was Chuck who was really a girl named Charlene. 

The historical details were interesting and integral to the plot. The details about Churchill, Number 10 Downing, the Blitz and MI5 added to the story. I’m looking forward to the next installment – at least three are in the works.

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