The Innocent Spy
Paperback, 497 pages; 2012 (2008)
Members' Price (UF2462): $12.71
Members' Price (UG3822): $12.71
All of Laura Wilson’s World War II novels are rooted in fact. And while they are terrific on their own terms, there’s no denying that the “truth” angle provides a special kick. The Innocent Spy is based on Joan Miller, an actual London socialite who was recruited to spy on “political subversives”--wealthy aristocrats who were supporting the Nazis. In Wilson’s hands, Miller is transmuted into Diana Calthorp, restless and trapped in a loveless marriage, all too happy to spy on the secret Fascists with whom she regularly attends cocktail parties. The work makes Diana feel useful, but it has other benefits as well, such as an introduction to Detective Inspector Ted Stratton. A solid working-class copper, Ted wouldn’t seem to have much in common with Diana, and in an ordinary world they would never have met. But war has turned the world upside down. And Ted and Diana discover that they share something very important: a profound and growing distrust of their bosses. An Empty Death, the second in the Ted Stratton series, picks up with the detective four years later, while the country is still mired in war and deception is behind every corner.