ARC Review: Mrs. Roosevelt’s Confidante

Title: Mrs. Roosevelt’s Confidante (Maggie Hope Mystery #5) 25191538

Author: Susan Elia MacNeal

Rating: ★★

Provided Synopsis: In this latest riveting mystery from New York Times bestselling author Susan Elia MacNeal, England’s most daring spy, Maggie Hope, travels across the pond to America, where a looming scandal poses a grave threat to the White House and the Allied cause.

December 1941. Soon after the attack on Pearl Harbor, Winston Churchill arrives in Washington, D.C., along with special agent Maggie Hope. Posing as his typist, she is accompanying the prime minister as he meets with President Roosevelt to negotiate the United States’ entry into World War II. When one of the First Lady’s aides is mysteriously murdered, Maggie is quickly drawn into Mrs. Roosevelt’s inner circle—as ER herself is implicated in the crime. Maggie knows she must keep the investigation quiet, so she employs her unparalleled skills at code breaking and espionage to figure out who would target Mrs. Roosevelt, and why. What Maggie uncovers is a shocking conspiracy that could jeopardize American support for the war and leave the fate of the world hanging dangerously in the balance.

Review: After the attack on Pearl Harbor, the United States has finally joined the war effort. In the entourage of Churchill, Maggie returns to America, where she comes to work closely with Mrs. Roosevelt after the mysterious death of the First Lady’s secretary.

I had high hopes for this book since it was to reunite Maggie with Churchill, David and John. But as with its predecessor, there was too much story rather than a centralized focus upon Maggie. Within the story were the days leading up to the scheduled execution of Wendell Cotton, the German’s rocket building effort, the building relationship between Churchill and Roosevelt, and a look into Hollywood commissioned propaganda. But where did all of these other stories leave Maggie?

She, once again, was left with a mystery more suited for a novella. Those responsible for the death and their motivations were explicitly stated very early on, therefore there was no suspense here. In truth, this book is best suited for those interested in minute — as well as often thrown in — details of the White House’s rooms and furnishings during this time.

The end of the story sets up the possibility of the next story being of more interest, since it claims Maggie will receive another mission, but I have begun to grow wary. Every book ends with the promise of more that is never delivered on. Let us get back to Maggie actually working as a spy, as she did in Berlin.

(I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. The expected publication date is October 27, 2015.)

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