Review: The Prime Minister’s Secret Agent by Susan Elia MacNeal

the-prime-ministers-secret-agent“For fans of Jacqueline Winspear, Charles Todd, and Anne Perry, The Prime Minister’s Secret Agent is a gripping new mystery featuring intrepid spy and code breaker Maggie Hope. And this time, the fallout of a deadly plot comes straight to her own front door.

World War II rages on across Europe, but Maggie Hope has finally found a moment of rest on the pastoral coast of western Scotland. Home from an undercover mission in Berlin, she settles down to teach at her old spy training camp, and to heal from scars on both her body and heart. Yet instead of enjoying the quieter pace of life, Maggie is quickly drawn into another web of danger and intrigue. When three ballerinas fall strangely ill in Glasgow—including one of Maggie’s dearest friends—Maggie partners with MI-5 to uncover the truth behind their unusual symptoms. What she finds points to a series of poisonings that may expose shocking government secrets and put countless British lives at stake. But it’s the fight brewing in the Pacific that will forever change the course of the war—and indelibly shape Maggie’s fate.” – Publisher Summary

Two years ago, I was introduced to the Maggie Hope Mystery series after winning a Goodreads First Reads giveaway. Instantly, I was hooked. Thus, I was thrilled when I had the chance to read and review Susan Elia MacNeal’s fourth novel in the series, The Prime Minister’s Secret Agent. I was not let down as I entered once again the world of Maggie Hope: mystery, suspense, spies, and always a bit of a love story to boot.

As this novel begins, Maggie is working as an instructor at a spy training camp after recently returning from an undercover mission in Nazi Germany. Her time in Germany has changed Maggie considerably; she is bitter and angry, her heart is hardened to the joys in life she once knew. She is relentlessly hunted by what Winston Churchill calls the “black dog” of depression and has isolated herself from the friends who have always loved and supported her. After a close friend becomes desperately ill and poisoning is suspected, Maggie becomes embroiled in an investigation she never expected. Paired with a former colleague, she is thrown back into the world of secrets, deceit, and treachery – and in the middle of all of this, Maggie manages it elude that nasty “black dog” once and for all.

The Prime Minister’s Secret Agent is yet another captivating addition to the Maggie Hope Mystery series. Susan Elia MacNeal’s writing is electric, filled with suspense, humor and wit. The novel, as with her previous ones, is filled with meticulously researched historical fact that MacNeal seamlessly weaves into her story – and not to be discredited, she lists each of her sources at the end of the book. To be honest, my greatest (and only) disappointment with this novel is that it – inevitably – had to end.

The Prime Minister’s Secret Agent by Susan Elia MacNeal is in stores July 1, 2014. Buy it, read it, love it.

4 stars

Random House – Bantam Dell {via NetGalley}

 

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