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In Farleigh Field

by Rhys Bowen

Book list Downton Abbey meets WWII. An infantry regiment is billeted at Farleigh Place, the Earl of Westerham's ancestral home in Kent, while the family adjusts to rationing and reduced staff. The war affects each of the earl's five daughters in different ways. Lady Pamela, for example, has a job at Bletchley Park, working on coded German messages. In Paris, Lady Margot is arrested by the Gestapo because her lover is in the Resistance. And Lady Phoebe, the youngest daughter, comes across the body of a parachutist in one of Farleigh's fields. Was the parachutist a spy? If so, was he trying to connect with someone in the neighborhood? Ben Cresswell, the local vicar's son, has been tasked by his superiors in MI5 to find out. Meanwhile, Ben's oldest friend, Jeremy Prescott, whom Pamela loves (though Ben loves her), has returned home after escaping from a POW camp. The skills Bowen brings to her several mystery series, including Molly Murphy and Royal Spyness, inform the plotting in this character-rich tale, which will be welcomed by her fans as well as by readers who enjoy fiction about the British home front.--Quinn, Mary Ellen Copyright 2017 Booklist

From Booklist, Copyright American Library Association. Used with permission.

Publishers Weekly Set in England during the early years of WWII, this well-crafted, thoroughly entertaining thriller from Agatha Award-winner Bowen (Crowned and Dangerous and nine other Royal Spyness mysteries) follows the lives of three childhood friends: RAF flying ace Jeremy Prescott, a city financier's son; Lady Pamela Sutton, the Earl of Westerham's third daughter, who works for a mysterious government department; and Ben Cresswell, a vicar's son, who, due to an accident, is deemed unfit for military duty and is recruited into a British intelligence unit. Glimpses of their initially carefree youth contrast with how the war gradually shapes their characters. The gripping action shifts among Farleigh Place (the Sutton family's stately home in Kent), London, and various hush-hush locations. Soon it's a game of spy versus spy, and with every twist and turn, the reader is unsure whom to trust. Agent: Meg Ruley, Jane Rotrosen Agency. (Mar.) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

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