Thursday, May 25, 2017

Review: The Alice Network by Kate Quinn

Title: The Alice Network
Author: Kate Quinn
Publication: June 6th 2017 by William Morrow Paperbacks

Genre: Historical Fiction
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Google Play | Kobo

Rating: 5/5

In an enthralling new historical novel from national bestselling author Kate Quinn, two women—a female spy recruited to the real-life Alice Network in France during World War I and an unconventional American socialite searching for her cousin in 1947—are brought together in a mesmerizing story of courage and redemption.

1947. In the chaotic aftermath of World War II, American college girl Charlie St. Clair is pregnant, unmarried, and on the verge of being thrown out of her very proper family. She's also nursing a desperate hope that her beloved cousin Rose, who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France during the war, might still be alive. So when Charlie's parents banish her to Europe to have her "little problem" taken care of, Charlie breaks free and heads to London, determined to find out what happened to the cousin she loves like a sister.

1915. A year into the Great War, Eve Gardiner burns to join the fight against the Germans and unexpectedly gets her chance when she's recruited to work as a spy. Sent into enemy-occupied France, she's trained by the mesmerizing Lili, the "Queen of Spies", who manages a vast network of secret agents right under the enemy's nose.

Thirty years later, haunted by the betrayal that ultimately tore apart the Alice Network, Eve spends her days drunk and secluded in her crumbling London house. Until a young American barges in uttering a name Eve hasn't heard in decades, and launches them both on a mission to find the matter where it leads.

“Both funny and heartbreaking, this epic journey of two courageous women is an unforgettable tale of little-known wartime glory and sacrifice. Quinn knocks it out of the park with this spectacular book!”—Stephanie Dray, New York Times bestselling author of America's First Daughter

I've only read the author's books set in ancient Rome so I was a tiny bit sceptical about her newest book that alternates between World War I and 1947. I haven't actually read a lot of books that are set in these times. But then I started the book and ended up being hooked from page one and now it's my favorite book of 2017. Kate Quinn just never disappoints.

In 1915 Eve Gardiner enters the Crown's service during World War I as a spy and is send to France. And in 1947, Charlie St. Clair who's pregnant and unmarried is determinded to find out what happened to her cousin who disappeared in Nazi-occupied France. When circumstances throws them together, along with Finn Kilgore and his Lagonda LG6, they're going on one hell of a roadtrip to discover the truth that Eve and Charlie desperately are looking for.

I absolutely loved reading about Eve, Charlie and Finn. These three made quite the trio. I also loved the chapters set in 1915 because I was very much intrigued by Eve as she started spying with the help of "Queen of Spies" Lili, who was also a really outstanding character, which I can only applaud the author for. 

As a Belgian this book resonated pretty deeply with me, obviously. I even shed a few tears at some parts. But I thought the book was quite witty at times as well. The humor versus the parts that were pretty terrible to read about at times were very well balanced, in my opinion. And also, so many emotions went through me with the story. It was really amazing!

Overall, The Alice Network by Kate Quinn was simply phenomenal. It just touched me to the core. I cried and laughed and devoured the story page by page. I would highly recommend to more than any other book I've read this year so far. I absolutely loved it! 

Kate Quinn is a native of southern California. She attended Boston University, where she earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Classical Voice. A lifelong history buff, she has written four novels in the Empress of Rome Saga, and two books in the Italian Renaissance detailing the early years of the infamous Borgia clan. All have been translated into multiple languages.

Kate has succumbed to the blogging bug, and keeps a blog filled with trivia, pet peeves, and interesting facts about historical fiction. She and her husband now live in Maryland with two black dogs named Caesar and Calpurnia, and her interests include opera, action movies, cooking, and the Boston Red Sox.
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  1. This sounds utterly brilliant -- and I'd never heard of the Alice Network before. It sounds absolutely intriguing!

  2. Glad you had a great time with this one :)

  3. I haven't read too many books set during WW1, because most of them focus on WW2. I actually find WW1 just as intriguing of a time period and I know a lot about the course of the war because of studying in history. I am glad this was such a wonderfully written book!


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