Mr. Churchill's Secretary

Mr. Churchill's Secretary

A Maggie Hope Novel

Book - 2011
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For fans of Jacqueline Winspear, Laurie R. King, and Anne Perry, Mr. Churchill's Secretary captures the drama of an era of unprecedented challenge--and the greatness that rose to meet it.

London, 1940. Winston Churchill has just been sworn in, war rages across the Channel, and the threat of a Blitz looms larger by the day. But none of this deters Maggie Hope. She graduated at the top of her college class and possesses all the skills of the finest minds in British intelligence, but her gender qualifies her only to be the newest typist at No. 10 Downing Street. Her indefatigable spirit and remarkable gifts for codebreaking, though, rival those of even the highest men in government, and Maggie finds that working for the prime minister affords her a level of clearance she could never have imagined--and opportunities she will not let pass. In troubled, deadly times, with air-raid sirens sending multitudes underground, access to the War Rooms also exposes Maggie to the machinations of a menacing faction determined to do whatever it takes to change the course of history.

Ensnared in a web of spies, murder, and intrigue, Maggie must work quickly to balance her duty to King and Country with her chances for survival. And when she unravels a mystery that points toward her own family's hidden secrets, she'll discover that her quick wits are all that stand between an assassin's murderous plan and Churchill himself.

In this daring debut, Susan Elia MacNeal blends meticulous research on the era, psychological insight into Winston Churchill, and the creation of a riveting main character, Maggie Hope, into a spectacularly crafted novel.
Publisher: New York : Bantam Books Trade Paperback, c2011
ISBN: 9780553593617
Characteristics: 373 p. ; 21 cm
Alternative Title: Maggie Hope novel


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Mar 26, 2016

A solid historical mystery set in London during WWII. The setting is believable and the plot is exciting enough to keep the reader engaged. A word of warning: any German used in the story must have come from Google Translate or something worse and makes no sense whatsoever.

Nov 11, 2014

Disappointing with very many small historical errors, including easy Trans-Atlantic phone calls!
Overall poorly done

Mar 10, 2014

Great first book in a series. Loved the history and the characters.

Jul 13, 2013

I liked this first Maggie Hope book. The story is interesting and though fiction takes place during WWII with true settings. Its an enjoyable read with surpises that I didn't see coming.

BPLNextBestAdults May 22, 2013

This is an exciting, well researched blend of fact and fiction during WW11. Hope, in wartime London during the blackouts, raids and bombings was exactly what Churchill needed in order to outwit the Nazi's. The murder of Churchill's secretary opened the door for Maggie Hope, a British citizen who was raised in America and eager to help the war effort. She was hired to type TOP SECRET files for Mr. Churchill. Her degree in advanced mathematics, and fluency in both French and German helped her become an essential part of Churchill's team. In spite of what the elite male Oxford/Cambridge private assistants thought of her "atrocious American accent", Maggie dealt with double agents, espionage, German codes and assassination plots. She encountered grave personal danger but her courage attracted the attentions of the prestigious MI-5. As Churchill said to Maggie, KPO-Keep Plodding On. Susan Elia MacNeal has created a heroine who will do just that. Reviewed by ML

branch_reviews Apr 24, 2013

A debut novel set in 1940’s London, introducing Maggie Hope, an American-raised young woman who is a math whiz and wants to help her birth country by utilizing her math skills in code breaking but can only find work as a secretary in Winston Churchill’s office. However, Maggie gets to help solve a murder case and foil an assassination plot setting the stage for more novels with the character, Maggie Hope. Lots of atmosphere created with WWII facts of war-torn London including the Blitz, rationing, social lives of young women and shocking surprises about her parents thrown in. It is fast paced and an enjoyable mix of mystery, thriller and romance. This novel has been nominated for many awards including the Mystery Writers of America’s 2013 Edgar Award for Best First Novel. Princess Elizabeth’s Spy is the second novel in the series and His Majesty’s Hope is set to be published shortly with a fourth slated for 2014. Reviewed by SFB.

Jan 02, 2013

enjoyable. Starts out with seemingly simplistic naive characters, but develops nicely.

Nov 09, 2012

A British mystery set during WW11. A lightweight story and feel good characters. I enjoyed it but it felt like a guilty pleasure because everyone feels surreally wholesome and the plot and setting lacking a visceral feeling as if it's removed rom anything real.

Oct 29, 2012

I really had high hopes for this book,
historical fiction with an intelligent protagonist but the author just didn't make Maggie come alive. All the characters felt stiff and unreal. The story is told from several different viewpoints but the portions told from Maggie's 1st person view just didn't work for me. Much better were the short segments told in 3rd person omniscient.....
I might read the next in the series just because it is a time period I'm interested in..I'm also currently reading a bio of Wallis Simpson which I find very interesting.

Jul 20, 2012

England during World War II: air raids, code breaking, IRA bombings, hope and glory. This is an enjoyable and richly detailed mystery involving a young woman with a brilliant mind serving as secretary to Mr. Churchill.

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