Cover Image: Avenue of Spies

Avenue of Spies

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Member Reviews

This is truly a somewhat ineptly named book by Alex Kershaw that nonetheless deserves a wide audience.   Alex Kershaw seemingly has a terrific knack for finding these stories of individuals which somehow are both personally interesting, and yet are emblematic for the larger story being told about World War Two.  In this case, the story of one family of Americans that is caught up in Occupied France.

The Avenue of Spies refers to the Avenue Foch in Paris, which was a nest of Nazis busy trying to squelch the French resistance, and also the protagonists in this story.  An American doctor, his French wife and their only son.   

The surprising aspect of this story is that this American doctor and family lives in Paris before the start of World War Two, and endures the Occupation after Paris and France fall in June 1940 and through the war.  

This is a rather amazing story that simply is riveting because of both what happened, and the narrative Kershaw weaves.  I don’t want in any way act to spoil the narrative, but it is interesting, fast-paced and truly astonishing.   Paris only occupies a part of the story, and suffice to say the rest of the book is awful to contemplate.  

I was hooked on trying to finish this story and couldn’t be distracted.   The family is truly caught up in the maelstrom of Europe in World War Two.   A fantastic read.  Highly recommended.
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I'm a big history buff and I have read other Alex Kershaw books. Highly recommended if you like spy/espionage books.
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