New York Station
by Lawrence Dudley
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Pub Date 23 Jan 2018 | Archive Date 19 Dec 2017
"...A thrilling WWII spy adventure..."
Based on the true story of the Nazis’ attempt to intervene in the 1940 United States presidential election, this World War II–era spy thriller has an uncanny relevance to today’s real-life political intrigue.
In August 1940—eighteen months before Pearl Harbor—Anglo-American MI6 agent Roy Hawkins is mysteriously rushed from Nazi-occupied Paris to New York. Enraged at being ordered away from what he believes is the real fight against Nazism and Fascism, he wants to get back to Paris as soon as possible, even though he knows it means almost certain death.
In New York, Hawkins is shocked and sickened to encounter a now alien America increasingly dominated by right-wing extremists, including a new radio celebrity, Walter Ventnor. After a tense encounter with his friend and mentor William Stephenson, he agrees to temporarily pursue a Nazi commercial envoy, Hans Ludwig, and try and stop him from stealing American submarine warfare secrets. Hawkins follows Ludwig to the elite Saratoga racing meeting, where Ludwig is cultivating top American business leaders. There he meets the scion of an ancient and aristocratic New York family, Daisy van Schenck. Fascinated by her after he persuades her to throw Ludwig out of her mansion, which Ludwig has rented, Hawkins finds himself increasingly attracted to Daisy and a different life. When Hawkins discovers a Nazi plot to rig the presidential election, he is forced to choose between duty and the woman he loves.
A Note From the Publisher
"This is a thrilling WWII spy adventure with a classic love-versus-duty story, robust characters, and a nice sense of time and place (the author makes sure we know we're in America of 1940 without a lot of window dressing). A good, solid thriller."
“A multifaceted protagonist who’s a refreshing change from formulaic genre leads lifts this gritty spy thriller from Dudley… Fans of Alan Furst and Joseph Kanon will find familiar pleasures.”
"The subject matter of New York Station, though centered around WWII, evokes clear similarities between the Nazi era and today’s divisive political climate. The conspiracy theories explored by Agent Hawkins are even more exciting when viewed in the context of our own government tensions, adding an extra level of intrigue....A classic thriller full of twists and turns, New York Station is relevant and thought provoking."
“A compelling World War Two–era novel which very quickly leads the reader into a world of espionage, drama, and intrigue. New York Station has an authentic feel and the angle of Nazi sympathizers in the USA feels very timely. The story works its way to a strong ending, with a great twist at the very end.”
-Alex Gerlis, author of the bestselling The Best of Our Spies and other World War Two espionage novels
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Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 15 members
Thanks to NetGalley, Mr. Dudley, and the publisher for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
I am enthralled with the intrigue of NEW YORK STATION, which sheds light on the espionage of pro Nazi American citizens in the 1940's , portraying Roosevelt's presidency as one of isolationism and smug detachment to the atrocities abroad. It is said this book is based on true events, and I wonder what really happened and what is fabrication. I wish the author had delineated that in his acknowledgements.
I believe this is an unproofed book, and therefore, I forgive the grammatical and mechanical errors. However, there are major problems with following the storyline. Transitioning is particularly troublesome. There are no breaks between scenes ..., even if the venue has changed....or the country has changed! That is extremely confusing! There are parts when the dialogue doesn't make sense in the context of the scene. I felt like giving up due to the effort it took to reread and sort out who it was doing what where! However, I was drawn to the plot, and it was enlightening to learn about America's Nazi sympathizers!
I received an ARC from NetGalley to read and review. The below is my honest, unbiased opinion. Thank you, Lawrence Dudley, the publisher, and NetGalley, for allowing me to review.
NEW YORK STATION is based on the true story of the Nazis' attempt to intervene in the 1940 United States presidential election. It's a World War II-era spy thriller that mirrors what we're seeing in today's real-life election. In 1940, eighteen months before Peal Harbor, Anglo-American MI6 agent Roy Hawkins is mysteriously rushed from Nazi-occupied Paris to New York. Enraged, he wants to return to Paris as soon as possible, but in New York, Hawkins discovers a new world, one dominated by right-wing extremists. He agrees to pursue a Nazi commercial envoy, Hands Ludwig, and stop him from stealing American warfare secrets. When Hawkins discovers a Nazi plot to rig the election, he is forced to choose between duty and the woman he loves.
This was my first Lawrence Dudley novel, and he didn't disappoint. This is a PERFECT novel to read in 2017/2018. It mirrors our current society and presidential campaign to perfectly (Trump/Russia). There's something about a book that is based on a true story--especially when that story is a conspiracy theory--that makes it unputdownable. It's akin to creepy horror films that you know are loosely based on a real event: it's so enthralling you just can't look away! That's how I felt while reading this book. I simply couldn't put it down, and I read it in just a few hours. While there were many characters to remember and subplots to keep track of, I didn't find it too difficult to stay focused and remember the little details Dudley weaves throughout the book.
I recommend this to anyone who enjoys a good conspiracy theory mystery.
This is really top notch stuff - based on historical event, Hawkins is borderline sociopath aftera tough timein Parisas a spy/resistance against the Nazis - they take over Paris and MI6 calls him back, and ships him off to NY where pre-Pearl Harbour the country is roiling against way and hating FDR - Nazis are operating in plain sight and the FBI is implicated - but lower down the ladder Hawkins operates to subvert every which way - the Brits want the US in the war, but W (Stephenson) who is based there for the British realises that it has to be done cautiously - a German plot to skewer the elections so FDR loses is undermined ...and its playing out brings Hawkins love. He is pulled all ways. Really good and the damage such a role can have on the psyche is apparent. Impressive
New York Station is a fascinating espionage thriller with strong historical roots. Of course, there is artistic license used at times, but it uses many small details that stop this being a fantastical Bond-like adventure.
The Bond comparison is hard to escape. Dudley invites the comparison with references to both Ian Flemming and William Stephenson, and there are similarities, but this is far from a Bond knock-off or homage.
The book has an old-fashioned feel to it. Not dated, stylised. The protagonist, Roy Hawkins, is as much James Stewart as he is James Bond. He has gadgets, but think spy cameras not laser equipped wristwatches. He may chase and grapple with bad guys, but there are no marathon slugging matches or bad guys that get knocked out by a sideways glance. It's all just toned down and plausible which makes it more pleasurable, especially in the context of the plotline - you don't need to suspend disbelief completely to get a kick out of this, and that lets you get sucked into the story.
And that story was enthralling. We start in Paris as the Nazis arrive and when Hawkins finds himself over the Atlantic in the neutral USA they manage to pop up once more. What seems simple propaganda at first quickly turns murkier as we discover just what these Nazi representatives are up to. The story has a slightly leisurely summer feel to it, yet it offers a healthy dose of action and adventure and the plot never really slackens.
The conclusion does feel a little out of place though. In attempting to wrap things up it tries a little too much in the space it has. The plot naturally piles more on, so by cramming it in it feels like an attempt to create some frenzy which just isn't needed. That said, it does leave a very tantalising hook for more which doesn't seem a bad thing to me.
A great read if you like your spies to be a little more understated.
I walked away from New York Station with a distinct feeling of a new series being launched. That would certainly be welcome news, for me, as this novel gave readers a fresh perspective on the tried and true WWII espionage thriller. Roy Hawkins proved a capable man of action sliding in to every situation with ease and thinking quick on his feet. He is calm, cool and adaptable, everything a good MI6 agent should be. Definitely a man to build a book series around.
New York Station ably shines a light on lesser known bits of the first half in the Second World War. Rarely do we consider parts of the world indirectly impacted by the war. In this novel our hero leaves Paris, a hot bed of Nazi activity, only to be deployed in an America currently tied by neutrality, where Roy believes his talents will be wasted. Little does he know what schemes he may discover.
I felt keenly the power of the American press to sway opinion and reenforce feelings of American isolation and trepidation regarding the war. Ah, the power of the press. Not necessarily reporting news but manufacturing it instead. Sound familiar? If I hear the BBC reporting on the negative aspects of brexit one more time I may scream. Everyone has an agenda, it seems. But, I digress.
This was a jolly good read and, if I am as lucky as I hope, it will not be the last I read of Roy Hawkins.
A fantastic read. Thoroughly enjoyed this and it is not something I would usually pick up. Will look for more from this author in future.
It's deja vu all over again. The Nazis are tyring to influence the presidential election of 1940. Roy Hawkins, MI6 agent is sent to New York to rout out Nazis and keep at least one of them from stealing US submarine secrets. A compelling read with the hisorical facts and atmosphere just right.