Saturday 6 July 2019

#BookReview Doublespeak: A Novel by Alisa Smith @FreshFiction @StMartinsPress

Doublespeak: A Novel by Alisa Smith
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

The followup to the literate and action-packed historical thriller Speakeasy, Doublespeak finds plucky protagonist Lena on a journey back to her past.

Lieutenant Lena Stillman has been left, nearly alone, on her code-breaking mission in remote Alaska. World War II has been over for a month, but due to crimes committed a lifetime ago, Lena is still under the control of the powerful Miss Maggie, her spymaster in Washington, DC.

Shaken by her role in the disappearance of Corporal Link Hughes—and by her own misjudgment of his character—Lena yearns for an opportunity to redeem them both. Then she receives a shocking message containing Link’s potential location: Siam. Embarking on a clandestine rescue mission to Bangkok, Lena is reunited with shadows from her past—including loyal friend Byron who is eager to escape his safe, dull life and the attractive yet dangerous “William Yardly.” As personal and political allegiances shift in the postwar maelstrom, it seems impossible to know who is good or bad, innocent or culpable and whether they are motivated by love or revenge.

Overlaying rich historic detail and an intricate plot, Doublespeak is an entrancing sequel to Alisa Smith’s first novel Speakeasy, which received the honor of being a Walter Scott Prize Academy recommended book of 2018.


Lieutenant Lena Stillman is stunned when she receives a message from a man she thought was dead. She's working in Alaska as a code-breaker and now her old lover Bill wants her to come to Siam. Not only that, he may be able to help her locate Corporal Link Hughes who she felt she betrayed. Now it seems that Bill knows where Link is. But what are his motives? And can she abandon her position in Alaska? What will her boss, spymaster Miss Maggie, say about that?


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