Monday, September 19, 2016

Fifth Column by Mike Hollow

This is the second novel featuring Detective Inspector Jago investigating crimes during the London blitz. It's a well written historical novel I enjoyed reading.

Jago is called out when the body of a young woman is found on rubble from a recent bombing. The pathologist concludes she was strangled and Jago sets off to discover the murderer.

This is a good mystery. The plot is a bit complex as there are many who do not tell the whole truth right off and the identity of one character may be more confusing than meets the eye. I really liked the way Jago methodically goes about finding out the truth. There were a number of possible suspects, right up to the end.

The strength of this series, though, is the historical aspect. Hollow notes that an actual historical event prompted the writing of the novel. I really like how we come to know the complex attitudes of people during WW II. Some thought the Germans were causing trouble because of how they had been treated at Versailles, with all the reparations forced on them. Some distrusted the news reports from England's government and put more store in what they heard from the English speaking German radio service. After France had fallen, some were sure England was going to be invaded shortly.

I really like this detective series. The characters are well crafted, the novel itself is very informative, and the plot held my interest. I recommend it to those who enjoy a well written historical British mystery.

You can find out more about the novel and the Blitz Detective here. Go here to read my review of the first book in this series, Direct Hit

My rating: 4/5 stars.

Mike Hollow was born in the Essex County Borough of West Ham, home of the Blitz Detective. He studied Russian and French at Cambridge University and worked translating for the BBC. He then worked with Tearfund, traveling widely. In 2001 he went freelance as a writer and translator.

Lion Hudson, distributed in the U.S. by Kregel, 330 pages.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher for the purpose of an independent and honest review.

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