Pros: Maggie and the other characters, well created world
Cons: One sub-plot, usual timing issues
The Bottom Line:
Book captures time and place well
So hard to put down
Hope in Nazi
World War II has always fascinated me, so I've been loving the Maggie Hope mysteries. These books follow our heroine as she finds herself in some very strong international intrigue during the early 1940's. His Majesty's Hope is the third in the series, and takes Maggie into
Germany. And these are almost perfect examples of what
historical fiction should be.
Maggie Hope has successfully completely her spy training this time, and is ready to go behind enemy lines. Her mission in
Germany is two fold. First, she is supposed to deliver radio tubes
to the resistance. Then, she must plant
a bug in the study of Clara Hess, a high ranking Nazi who just happens to be
the mother that Maggie thought was dead.
Clara’s other daughter Elise is about to make some horrible discoveries of her
own concerning the kids she works with as a nurse at the hospital. Elise’s friend’s husband is a Jew, and the
friend lives in constant fear that he will be summoned to go to a work camp. And there’s the mysterious patient in the
hospital that doesn’t speak at all. How
will all this come together?
Actually, I had a pretty good idea of how a few things would play out early on, but I couldn't wait to see those scenes actually happen. I was not disappointed. As a mystery, this book was a little light, but the spy part of the novel kicked things up, and I had a hard time putting it down.
When historical fiction is done right, it transports you to a different time and place, and that is exactly what happens here. I was in
Berlin of 1941, and I had a hard time coming
back to reality when I had to put the book down.
Of course, part of that reality is quite depressing, and the book does a good job of covering the reality of the Nazi horrors without going into graphic detail. Still, of the three books in the series, this is by far the most serious.
That seriousness is reflected in the characters. Both old and new are very well developed, and I bought exactly what they were doing at every step along the way. But the events of this book really do wear on them more so than the previous books. The last few chapters are not light reading, but they are so good. Personally, I am quite anxious to see where the characters go from here.
Unfortunately, my usual complaints carry through as well. The timeline is all over the place, but if you just let that go, you'll still enjoy the story. And Maggie's personal life feels all too familiar, especially the last scene. Not that I can't wait to see how that picks up in the next book. Worst of all was a sub-plot involving a friend back in
that had nothing to do with the overall story and felt like it was there just
to preach instead of entertain.
Complaints aside, His Majesty's Hope is must reading for anyone who enjoys good historical fiction. Just read this series in order because you will enjoy them best as you watch the characters develop.
NOTE: I received this book as an ARC via the Amazon Vine program.
You'll enjoy this books best if you read the Maggie Hope Mysteries in order.