Cover Image: The DeValera Deception (Winston Churchill Thrillers)

The DeValera Deception (Winston Churchill Thrillers)

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Member Reviews

I love historical fiction when it's done right, and this is no exception. A fantastic start to an exciting mystery series starring Winston Churchill. I can't wait to read the rest of the series. Highly recommended!

Thank you to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for the opportunity to preview this book. I enjoyed it.

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ABOUT THIS BOOK: In the summer of 1929 Weimar Germany still has a secret military agreement with the USSR to develop new weapons beyond the Ural Mountains. Ultimately, both want to dismember the newly revived independent Poland, but to distract Britain from helping the Poles, the new Irish Free State is placed at risk by conspirators and arms dealers intent on fomenting an IRA coup d'état.

Winston Churchill is about to travel to North America when the new Prime Minister Ramsay MacDonald asks him to handle a secret assignment. The IRA intends to buy large quantities of arms in the United States and an SIS team will investigate. Churchill is to enlist American President Herbert Hoover to prevent the weapons from reaching Ireland. But Churchill has his own unofficial team gather evidence as well.

Bourke Cockran Jr., a law professor and former military intelligence agent, is the son of Churchill's old Irish American mentor. Mattie McGary, Churchill's goddaughter, works for William Randolph Hearst. Attracted to each other, their tempers often clash as Cockran and Mattie follow a trail from New York to Los Angeles through Canada to discover who is funding the IRA and where the arms are assembled.

But Mattie is also keeping secrets from Cockran, who has an agenda of revenge: to kill the leader of the IRA team who is responsible for the murder of his wife in the Irish Civil War. These plans interfere with foiling the arms shipment and an IRA plot to assassinate Churchill. And time is running out . .

MY OPINION: This is the second book in this series that I have both read and loved.

I love the authors ability to blend their fictional tale with the reality of the era so that the reader is never quite sure where one ends and the other begins. Even without piggybacking on the Churchill name, this is an excellent read, providing much interesting information on the events between the wars and accurately portraying the frantic need for enjoyment at whatever the cost so prevalent at the time.

The Devalera Deception has all the ingredients of a good thriller- sex, greed, politics, and crime - and does not disappoint.

4.5 stars.

Thank you to First Edition Design Publishing via Netgalley for providing a digital copy of The Devalera Deception by Michael McMenamin and Patrick McMenamin for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.

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A wonderful first book in a thrilling series involving Winston Churchill. Highly recommended for fans of historical fiction, mysteries and the esteemed Prime Minister himself. 5/5

Thanks to the author, publisher and NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.

#TheDeValeraDeception(winstonChurchillThrillers) #NetGalley

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The DeValera Deception is set in the 1929-1939 era, just before the start of the second world war. Joseph Murphy, a 45-year-old Irish American banker receives a telegram to initiate wire transfers. And before he could that, he is shot in the chest. Oskar Weidenfeld, a German diplomat is shocked to learn about the clandestine German military assistance to Russia in destroying Poland. Oskar is brutally murdered before he could discuss this with the Chancellor.

Germany, with the help of Geneva Group, plots to divert the attention of the British towards Ireland while they conquer Poland. Churchill learns about Germany spending 3 million dollars to buy arms from America for the IRA. With the help of Bourke Cockran Jr., a law professor and former US Army CounterIntelligence agent, and Mattie McGary, Churchill ‘s goddaughter, Winston Churchill decides to solve the mystery behind illegal arms supply to the IRA.

Things go haywire when Sturm, a German agent finds Cockran interfering in his affairs. Meanwhile, McBride, the IRA who was responsible for the death of Cockran’s wife Nora, learns about Mattie’s undercover work.

There is love, sex, hatred, politics, brutality and war-related crimes of the worst kind – rape in this book. I was amazed to read about the Graf Zeppelin – a German-built and operated, passenger carrying airship that operated commercially from 1929 to 1937. There were so many interesting things that happened before the start of WW II – the rise of Hitler, prohibition of alcohol in America, cocktail parties and mistresses and greed for power and one can read about all these in this book.

I liked the way the characters have developed, be it the bad guys or the heroes. The book ends with Hitler winning the elections and the start of historical events that led to WW II.

A fast-paced thriller with oodles of history, this is one of the best books that I have ever read. I really like books that impart knowledge about anything, especially if it is about the WW I or II.

My Rating: 5/5

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"The DeValera Deception" eBook was published in 2018 (the original paper edition was published in 2010) and was written by Michael McMenamin and Patrick McMenamin ( Mr. McMenamin has published seven novels and this is the first in their “Winston Churchill 1930s Thriller” series.

I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Situations. The story is set across North America in 1929.

Winston Churchill is traveling across Canada and the US. The Prime Minister, Ramsay MacDonald, asks him to discretely approach President Herbert Hoover to get assistance in stopping the sale of arms to the IRA. While a team of SIS agents is dispatched to investigate, Churchill decides to rely on his own resources. He recruits his goddaughter, Mattie McGary, who is a reporter for the Hearst newspapers and Bourke Cockran a lawyer and son of one of Churchill's former mentors.

While Cockran develops a strong love interest in McGary, he also mistrusts her and Hearst. The two are able to discover quite a bit about the IRA plot, but they find themselves in dangerous situations time and again. Cockran is distracted by the presence in the US of the IRA agent responsible for the death of his first wife. He struggles to keep his focus on the arms deal instead of seeking revenge.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 9.5 hours I spent reading this 415 page period thriller. I liked the characters of Cockran and McGary, as well as the real historical figures that the authors have woven into the story. I like the cover art selected for the novel. I give this novel a 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

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Book Review: The DeValera Deception (Winston Churchill Thrillers) by Michael McMenamin & Patrick McMenamin

Hard-nosed, unsanitized historical depiction of fictional events where no person or topic is held sacrosanct, revolving elliptically around Sir Winston Churchill with emphasis on his "despised" American heritage. Replete with uncompromising brutality - lots of gore, sex, rape, hatred; bigotry against Catholics, bias against Americans and disdain for the Irish by the British, In turn, Herbert Hoover, derisively portrayed as the "engineer" president, comes across as cold-hearted and insensitive toward the cause of an Ireland struggling for freedom.

Perhaps, during that time, all these may have been a version of reality after all.

Money, mistresses, estates and grandeur were king. Alan Greenspan's "irrational exuberance" quote apparently came three quarters of a century too late. In the book, even the chambermaid was invested in stocks.

Gone the affable, double-chinned, rotund person famous for his speeches; enter an energized, materialistic version, working dollars for newspaper articles, though still ubiquitous, the cigars and the man's alcoholism. Churchill plays a bit role, albeit manipulative and critical to the story. Think "The Eagle Has Landed", except the setting is in America and the villains are Irish of the brutal, internecine type plus pre-Hitler Germans. Oberst Kurt Steiner, heroic paratrooper-leader, is replaced by Kurt von Sturm, aspiring Zeppelin pilot.

Eamon DeValera, "Long Fellow", natural born American of Basque-Irish heritage, for all the grandeur of the title of the book, appears only on a few pages, almost as an historical footnote, even less than his arch rival and Minister of Finance, Michael Collins, "Big Fellow".

The strength of the book is in the orchestration by the authors of events and the fog of fiction and reality into an ensemble attuned in harmony, with the main protagonists, Bourke Cockran Jr., a law professor and former spy, and Mattie McGary, fictional goddaughter of the legendary P.M., barreling through the plot with Churchill, William Randolph Hearst, Hoover, the "Apostles" and a cast of historically true figures, interacting in the background.

Beyond the aggrandizement of the title, creative speculation and political controversy, the book is an intriguing first-class thriller with those essential dollops of power and greed particularly of men in government, the global finance and military industrial complex, and, representing the media, in a class by himself, W. R. Hearst.

Review based on an advance reading copy presented by NetGalley and First Edition Design Publishing.

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