This was a tough book for me to really get going with. The first third was really slow and I kept putting it down and starting something else. Once I finally forced myself to stay focused, I found a fantastic historical thriller.
Telling the true story of a mother-daughter duo in WWII Los Angeles, the book looks at the war on the home front against a Nazi movement in the US.
Overall, I'd rate it a 3.5. I'm a huge fan of MacNeil's Maggie Hope series and didn't feel quite the same connection I usually do with her characters - but the latter 2/3rds of the book did zip along and hold my attention.
This story is inspired by the real mother-daughter spy duo who foiled Nazi plots in Los Angeles during WWII by going undercover.
When Veronica takes a job as a typist she quickly realizes she is working for a German Nazi campaign to recruit Americans to help them. She is one brave lady as she goes to the FBI to report her information and finds herself caught up in stopping them without being found out,
I was surprised that I hadn't heard of the women that inspired this book prior to reading it. I'm pretty well versed in the minutiae and odd stories surrounding WW2, but this was a new one for me. I had to go and do some other research after finishing the book! I thought it was good! I think there could have been some further character and story development, and the possibility of this being a longer book as it's only advertised as a standalone. A fun and interesting story tied up in a nice little package.
Very well written, historical novel about some thing that happened in the past that I was not aware of. The writing was good. The research was well done. Look forward to more from this author.
Vi and Veronica are a mother and daughter who stumble upon an underground Nazi cell in Los Angeles during the early days of World War II. For different reasons, the women decide to get more involved with the organization as spies and share secrets with the government. What happens, though, when the women begin to feel threatened and unsafe amid growing unrest?
I really like that the characters in this novel are based on real people. Vi and Veronica are based on Grace and Sylvia Comfort. I'm using the bibliography at the end of the book for additional research. For example, I didn't realize a house for Hitler was built in LA.
This novel also discusses cultural contexts of the time. I appreciated the references to recipes, clothing and philosophies. Some of the philosophies are eerily similar to views folks hold today.
Note: some profanity, sexual content and occult references.
Historical fiction has always been one of my favorite genres, particularly WWII stories. This one was fascinating and unique. So many of the great HF reads are based in Europe, however, this one is set at home on the west coast in CA. The story is engaging and mesmerizing, while at the same time, I learned so much about the time. I had no idea of the depth of Nazi sympathizers working within the US, and particularly in the San Diego area. Although fiction, this is based on the efforts of real life Americans at the time, particularly a mother-daughter duo, Sylvia & Grace Comfort. Several footnotes away from the main stories we know about the times, but this pair put themselves on the line for their country and what was right. The writing was beautiful, and the story flowed well and kept my attention the whole way through. I would have liked to see the beginning move a little faster along the plotline, but I understand the need to set the stage. Would definitely recommend this one for anyone who loves WWII HF and is interested in a little known story of strong women helping the cause! Thanks so much to Susan Elia MacNeal, the publisher, and NetGalley for the opportunity to review this e-arc.
Susan Elia MacNeal is THE author who made me realize that I love historical fiction. Mother Daughter Traitor Spy proves to be another A+ book by Susan!
If you know me, you know I love Susan's Maggie Hope series and if you've gotten to her most recent release there, you'd see that this similar to what Maggie finds herself in, minus our favorite British characters.
I had no idea that there was an American Nazi presence in LA during WWII and I admire the research that Susan did here to share the story of real women who went under as spies.
I did find this a bit clunkier and more repetitive than her writing in the Maggie Hope series, so I'm rating this a 4.5 but rounded up here.
This book is supposedly inspired by real life events. While the premise is interesting and unique, I didn't find the tale, as told, to be really compelling.
I am a huge fan of historical fiction books … especially when they take place during WWII. And this one caught my attention because it involved the Nazi movement in the US. The author clearly did a lot of research and there were facts I found very interesting in the story. Getting to know Veronica Grace and her mother, Violet “Vi” Grace, and their willingness to go undercover to serve as spies was interesting. The story had great promise, but I don’t think the delivery was adequate. The pace of the story was very slow and did not keep my attention.
Thank you to NetGalley and Bantam for my advanced review copy. All opinions and thoughts are my own.
For more reviews, please visit my blog at: https://www.msladybugsbookreviews.com/. Over 1000 reviews posted!
I love the Maggie Hope series so I got this standalone with excitement and anticipation. I was not disappointed! The history was fascinating and new information. It was a page turner for sure and I enjoyed the characters relationships.
Mother Daughter Traitor Spy authored by Susan Elia McNeal is a top notch historical, based on a real life mother-daughter team at beginning of World War 2 in Los Angeles involving an underground Nazi cell. Violet is Grace's mother. Both are both sympathetic with the plight of the Jewish people and quite alarmed by the neo-Nazi blatant recruitment of American citizens! The women uncover the California Reich, an ultra-secret terrorist group. Violet and Grace begin spying for LA's anti-Nazi spymaster. The intense intrigue builds chapter by chapter. Worries that they are getting in too deep. Will Roosevelt be re-elected although more and more Hilter support pours in from Europe! The intrigue and tension builds! Will they be uncovered? Are their lies solid enough? Who's going to slip and make a mistake, blowing their cover? Death or Freedom of Liberty?
I highly recommend this outstanding WW2 Thriller!!!
This is my first book by this author which I enjoyed reading and look forward to seeing what is next for her. I enjoyed her attention to details that brought the story to life on each page. Her characters are relateable, connectable and added to the storys entertainment value. This is a well written story about a mother and daughter spy duet during WWII. Their story is one of family, duty and brings inspiration. I enjoyed watching the growth in this story. This is a fast paced, hard to put down story that had me wanting to know what would happen next. I really enjoyed this book and I highly recommend it.
Absolutely fantastic story. The author captured the feeling of the times with great clarity. To see how impacted the US was by Nazisim is insane to even try and wrap your head around.
We so frequently think about World War II, and the Holocaust, and only think about Pearl Harbor and the end of the Holocaust, as far as the US is concerned. When you see the amount of Nazis activity that was already here, it's crazy to think about.
This book follows the story of a mother and daughter who are both spies for the US, and help to thwart numerous Nazi activities in the Southern California and Los Angeles area. The craziest part is that these characters are based on a real mother/daughter "team." This is definitely a book to check out if you love historical fiction!
After graduating from college and then finding out she's losing her job in publishing, Veronica Grace and her mother, Violet, are moving from New York to Los Angeles to start new lives. It's 1940 and this mother daughter duo have fallen into a pocket of Nazi supporters/recruiters on US soil. What they don't expect is to become spies.
The story line of Mother Daughter Traitor Spy wasn't bad, and I enjoyed it for the most part. I liked that the characters were based on real people and events that happened leading up to WWII. I felt like parts of it were difficult to follow and I was bored. If you really enjoy historical fiction works around WWII and the holocaust, I feel like this is something you'd enjoy.
Thank you to NetGalley and Bantam (Random House Publishing) for this digital ARC in exchange for my honest reivew.
A wonderful historical fiction read! I was completely immersed. The research for this was fantastic, I truly felt like I was back in time with the characters. Highly recommend!
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this arc in exchange for an honest review.
A mother and daughter in 1940s California go undercover to infiltrate Nazi sympathizer organizations in Susan Elia MacNeal’s (Mr. Churchill’s Secretary) latest. After journalist Veronica Grace loses her job in New York when her affair with a married man is discovered, she and her widowed mother Vi move to California to stay in a home owned by her Uncle Walter.
Veronica finds a job working as an office secretary and soon discovers that her new employers are Nazi sympathizers. Appalled at her employers’ political allegiance, she and her mother contact an old Navy friend of her father’s who is interested in what Veronica has learned about her boss’ subversive activities. Together, Veronica and her mother undergo training as spies to expose the threats of those who seek not only to keep the U.S. out of the war but to offer support to Hitler’s regime.
Based on actual mother/daughter spies who infiltrated Nazi organizations in Los Angeles, MacNeal’s latest is an eye-opening, riveting view of the efforts on American soil to not only undermine the American government, but offer support to Germany’s relentless quest for power.
I enjoy Susan Elia Macneals books as there is so much historical research that goes into them. This one is no different. Admittedly, I read a few pages in, wasn’t hooked and left it for months! I picked it up again and couldn’t put it down. It’s amazing to learn about some of the things that were happening here in the US during WWII before we entered it, and it’s scary how similar things are today. It’s a good read, hard to say enjoyable considering the topic and similarities to history repeating itself, but another good solid read from the author.
While providing historical background into little known events surroundingbthe attempted rise of nazism in the US, I found the story sort of flat. This could have been one of those tv docudrama type books. The history is excellent, fascinating. I certainly went down a few fun and interesting google rabbit holes. I just felt the charecter development to be a bit flat and one dimensional. But looking back, if I imagine this read as a docudrama series, I can totally see it. 3 stars from me. Thanks netgalley, I would recommend this for the main reason who knew about nazism in the US? We aren't taught about it. And we should be considering how closely we are flirting with facism now.
I love that this historical fiction is based on true events and real people! Although, the pacing was a bit slow at times this one hit all the right notes for me. MacNeal’s rich and vivid descriptions of locations and fashions really brought the era to life!