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Wednesday, September 01, 2021

SOE in Denmark, and Desolation Canyon by P.J. Tracy

 September has finally arrived, although it will be a while before it feels like fall.  I still have a lot of books to review from August, and I'll have to make myself get some of them scheduled.  Procrastination.  Instead of reviewing, I often just start another book.  Do you do that?  

It is 88 this morning with a heat index of 97 degrees; the high today will be 99--so the heat index will be at least 108.  Combined with the onset of allergy season and the itchy eyes, sneezing, and overall tiredness, I'm not feeling any incentive to do much today.  Weeds, be damned.  

I slowed down on my Nightmare Catchers in August, and have only three in progress.  Almost done, but they've been waiting on completion for a while. 

 

SOE in Denmark is an overview of SOE operations in Denmark written shortly after the war.  (Special Operations Executive) 

"SOE in Denmark was written at a time when SOE was still largely unknown to the general public and its operations a closely guarded secret. It was expected that its activities would never be officially acknowledged and the study of its actions in Denmark was compiled with the aim of provide a lasting record of its achievement."

While the book offers an account of the SOE's operations and collaboration with the Danish agents, it is an official report and lacks personal information about the agents who risked their lives.  The Appendices offer more information and reference material.  I was a little startled to find that approximately 2/3 of the book was the reference material, important and informative.

Having read Between Silk and Cyanide by Leo Marks (son of Benjamin Marks, antiquarian bookseller of Marks & Co and 84, Charing Cross Road fame), I mistakenly thought SOE in Denmark would be similar.  

It isn't.  It is, nevertheless, important.  I  wish someone had recorded a more detailed account of  the individuals involved in the resistance to the Nazi Occupation of Denmark. Although SOE in Denmark lacks the human aspect, it is historically interesting.

(Some of the most famous female SOE agents were in France and included Nancy Wake, Violette Szabo, Odette Sansom, and Noor Inayat Khan--they have been written about many times. I wish we knew more about the Danish agents.)  

NetGalley/Frontline Books

WWII History.  Sept. 21, 2021.  Print length:  208 pages.


Desolation Canyon is the second book in this new series by P.J. Tracy.  

The series has several problems: 

While the author seems to want Detective Margaret Nolan to be the lead character, she wasn't the main character in Deep Into the Dark, and she isn't in Desolation Canyon.  

Too many fantastic coincidences and unbelievable plot lines.

No humor.

I miss the Monkeewrench gang! 

NetGalley/Minotaur Books 

Jan. 18, 2022.  Print length:  320 pages


26 comments:

  1. Your Nightmare Catchers are always so well done, they amaze me.

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    1. Thanks! I'm going to get these three finished so I can start playing with Halloween monsters. Maybe I'll turn the AC down and pretend that it is cool and fresh outside. :)

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  2. I love your Nightmare Catchers! They're so great! It's already so hot here, the A/C is struggling to keep things cool. I'm glad Fall is almost here.

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    1. Thanks, Ashley, they have been fun even if August slowed me down on anything crafty. Here in the South, we are going to have to begin thinking about ways to keep our houses cool in the summer. The AC struggles here, too. :(

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  3. SOE in Denmark sounds important but very dry. Not sure I could handle that one right now.

    Don't give up on the Nightmare Catchers...can't think of a more perfect time for those little guys to be born into the world.

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    1. SOE in Denmark was dry, but it is the first I've read about operations in Denmark.

      The world does seem intent on chaos and distress, so maybe an "antidote" to bad dreams can be helpful.

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  4. Your Nightmare Catchers are very cute! And that's too bad that SOE in Denmark ended up being a bit dry and not as good as Between Silk and Cyanide (which I totally loved!).

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    1. Thanks! I've enjoyed making the little creatures. Between Silk and Cyanide was fascinating, wasn't it? I have several favorites about WWII, and that The Secret Lives of Codebreakers: The Men and Women Who Cracked the Enigma Code at Bletchley Park are two of the best.

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  5. S.O.E. in Denmark certainly seems to be of historical interest. As for Desolation Canyon, nah, I think not. And I love your Nightmare Catchers. We all need some of those!

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    1. SOE in Denmark was an official report--which it says on the cover, but I didn't pay attention to that. It wasn't what I was hoping for, but I'm still glad I read it. Desolation Canyon didn't work well for me, but maybe the author is trying to find the right fit after her mother's death. If so, it must have been the mother who had the ability to bring quirky characters to life.

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  6. I've read all of the Monkeewrench gang series and enjoyed that. After the mother part of this writing duo passed I think her daughter changed up the formula. Too bad. I was going to read Deep into the Dark sometime, but now maybe not.

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    1. I can understand the daughter wanting to change things up and get a new and different series published. It must be tough to create a style and another set of characters. Go ahead and try Deep into the Dark--you may like it better than I did! But I still think Sam Easton is much more interesting than Maggie Nolan. :)

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  7. Too hot for weeding! I know a bit about Norway during WWII but nothing about Denmark! Need more on that country's struggles.

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    1. Yes, the Norway heavy water sabotage was important in preventing Germany from succeeding with an atomic bomb. A daring mission! I first read about that in Between Silk and Cyanide, but I've never seen much about Denmark's occupation or resistance.

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    2. It seems I should read Between Silk and Cyanide. thx for the tip!

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    3. If you are interested in WWII espionage, Between Silk and Cyanide is an excellent choice. :)

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  8. Our weather here has been rainy lately; and the flash floods have definitely caused some inconvenience.

    Your Nightmare Catchers are so cute! Do keep them coming!

    I don't think I've ever read a P.J. Tracy book. Perhaps I need to start on her Monkeewrench series first.

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    1. Seems like the order of the day--too much rain or too little! The Monkeewrench books are both fun and exciting; I really wouldn't mind reading them again. Great escape, suspense, and characters!

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  9. Like Rita, I've not read the new Tracy book. I also miss the Monkeewrench gang. Will keep this new one in mind, but I don't think I'll rush.

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    1. A lot of people have liked the new series better than I have, so give it a try if you run out of books on "the list." :)

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  10. It's tricky when you anticipate a book going one way and it goes another. At this point in my life, I usually put the book down.

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    1. :) I abandon an awful lot of books. Sometimes I feel compelled to finish for one reason or another--it depends on the book and what I have lined up to fill in!

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  11. I loved PJ Tracy's "Monkeewrench Gang" and am sorry to hear that this new series isn't nearly as good. I'll probably skip them. Too many books...

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    1. I was sad when the Monkeewrench Gang ended. The combination of suspenseful and funny was so much fun. A lot of people will like the new series, but as you say, there are so many books to choose from!

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  12. It was super hot this weekend so needless to say I'm ready for fall too. And, I would say, all the time - I go from book to book without reviewing them. Which is probably why I'm behind by at least 15 books! haha... Sorry to hear the new P.J. Tracy series isn't as good as the Monkewrench Gang one.

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    1. :) I know I should review before I forget the details, but sometimes the next book is shouting: READ ME! It is so easy to get behind on reviewing, isn't it?

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