Sunday, November 11, 2018

Nine mysteries set immediately after WWI

J. Kingston Pierce edits The Rap Sheet, a blog focused on crime fiction, writes the book design-oriented blog Killer Covers, and is a columnist for Down & Out: The Magazine. At CrimeReads he tagged nine "crime and espionage stories whose action occurs within the first half-decade of the war’s finish," including:
The Ways of the World by Robert Goddard (2013)

It’s the spring of 1919, and 27-year-old James “Max” Maxted, previously of the Royal Flying Corps, is finally back in England following two years of service on the front and another 18 months spent in a German POW camp. Together with Sam Twentyman, his friend and erstwhile airplane engineer, he hopes to launch a flying school on his family’s ancestral estate. However, news that his diplomat father, Sir Henry Maxted, has tumbled to his death in Paris amid deliberations over what will become the Treaty of Versailles, obliges Max to delay those plans. He and his scandal-wary elder brother travel to France to retrieve their sire’s remains, but in the course of it, Max grows doubtful of police speculation that Sir Henry’s demise was a “bizarre and undignified accident” suffered while he was covertly observing his “très jolie” mistress. Despite Max’s dearth of intelligence-gathering savvy, he’s “cool-headed and courageous,” and manages (with Sam’s aid) to unearth a panoply of unsavory players—including an amoral American dealer in secrets, a seductive Russian bookshop employee, a scheming official with Britain’s Foreign Office, and a German spymaster—who might help answer questions surrounding Sir Henry’s fate. Could the diplomat’s death have had to do with the explosive contents of his safe deposit box? Dubious allegiances, the intervention of an elusive Arab boy, and a hired assassin all figure into this dramatic and atmospheric yarn—the opening installment in a trilogy.
Read about another entry on the list.

My Book, The Movie: The Ways of the World.

The Page 69 Test: The Ways of the World.

--Marshal Zeringue