Nazi-occupied France, 1944: I tear open the envelope, extracting a sheet of folded paper. I read it, my heart cracking with every word. There is no mistaking the name of the man who betrayed us. Jack. My beloved fiancé – and now, a traitor.
For months, Marianne’s resistance network has carried out courageous missions from a remote farmhouse in southern Provence, aiding the Nazis’ downfall. But one fateful night, they are viciously ambushed as German soldiers storm in, scattering, capturing or killing every last person there.
Mourning the loss of her friends, Marianne will need every ounce of courage to survive. Not only has her life as a secret agent been critically compromised, but her heart has been shattered. Because Jack, her darling fiancé and fellow spy, fled in the chaos – and is accused of being the traitor who betrayed them.
Desperate to believe Jack’s innocence and that their love was true, to her horror Marianne discovers he has been seized by the Butcher of Lyon, a Nazi more brutal and ruthless than any other. Now it is more imperative than ever that Marianne finds Jack – before he reveals the names of every undercover agent in France, or before he is murdered for remaining loyal.
So Marianne sets out on the most dangerous mission of her life, and the most personal. With her tight-knit group of fellow women agents by her side, she risks everything to rescue Jack. Can she save her fiancé before it’s too late – and change the fate of the war in the process? Or is she blind to the heart-breaking truth, and simply sacrificing her own life?
Based on true stories of the fearless women secret agents
About the Author
Amanda was born in Hong Kong and survived both a convent boarding school and a Jesuit boys’ school before being summarily ejected from the latter.
She gets her thirst for adventure from her parents who met in the jungle in Borneo where her mother had set up a hospital and her father, a former Gurkha Intelligence officer and Oxford-educated spy, was probably up to no good.
She is the author of the bestselling satirical novels Selling Out and Secret Admirer (published by Pan) which have both received critical acclaim and have been translated into several languages.
Her major YA thriller trilogy, Kumari, Goddess of Gotham, was nominated for the Guardian Children’s Book Prize and the Doncaster Book Award. It also featured as Redhouse Book Of The Month and Lovereading4kids Book Of The Month.
Amanda has a degree in drama and her first telly job was as a member of the Communist Resistance in ’Allo ‘Allo. This involved running around with a dachshund tucked under one arm and deploying her best cod French accent. It has all been dramatically downhill since.
A broadcaster as well as an actress and novelist, Amanda appears regularly on BBC radio and LBC and was a contracted writer to the hit series Weekending on Radio 4.
She researched and edited the leading directory for banks, The Banker’s Almanac, for Euromoney publications while also covering stories of shady dealings in the City for them. She has written for, or contributed to, The Evening Standard, The Times, New Woman, US Cosmopolitan, Bulgaria’s Vagabond and Company Magazine as well as numerous online publications.
Amanda has conducted a love coaching phone-in from the sofa of Richard & Judy and wooed the viewers on Channel 5 Live. She won an award at the Hungarian Gyor Film Festival for a short film she produced, a psychological thriller called Pros and Cons. She is currently working on a new crime thriller book series.
As well as Eastern European Mafiosi and the ex-head of the KGB, Amanda numbers serving and retired Police Officers, FBI agents, members of the Special Forces and distinguished forensic scientists among her dubious but well-qualified contacts. From Aconite to The Zodiac Killer, The Crime Dictionary is her latest book and made good use of those contacts.