Review By Veronica

The Paris Agent will keep you up until the wee hours of the morning because you will not be able to put it down.

Favourite Quote:

Perhaps at first glance, we might have looked like ordinary passengers; four women in civilian clothes, sitting in pairs facing one another, the private carriage of the passenger train illuminated by the golden light of a cloudless late summer sunrise. Only upon closer inspection would a passerby have seen the handcuffs that secured us, our wrists resting at our sides, between us not because we meant to hide them but because we were exhausted and they were too heavy to rest on our bony thighs. Only at a second glance would they have noticed the emaciated frames or the clothes that didn’t quite fit, or the scars and healing wounds each of us bore after months of torture and imprisonment. 

Goodreads Synopsis: 

1970—In the aftermath of his war-ravaged past, Noah Ainsworth is still haunted by memories of his time as a fearless British operative in France. But a critical head injury left Noah with frustrating memory gaps and a burning question that plagues him—who was the agent who saved his life during that tragic final mission?

Determined to find answers, Noah’s daughter Charlotte embarks on a quest from their cozy home in Liverpool, leading her to the incredible lives of two ordinary women—Chloe and Fleur—who transformed into fearless spies on foreign soil. But as Charlotte unravels the heroic exploits of these women and their connection to Noah, she inadvertently stumbles upon evidence of a double agent lurking disturbingly close to home, drawing her into a treacherous web of secrets and unearthing a shocking story from those final days of the war.

Gosh, I love Kelly’s books; they are just so addictive and so gripping, and Kelly has really knocked this one out of the park. If you are looking for a historical fiction book that is dark, gritty, and will keep you on the edge of your seat, then The Paris Agent is for you. The story is told from three POVs: Charlotte, Eloise, and Josie. Charlotte’s story takes place after the war. She is the daughter of Noah, an SOE agent who doesn’t remember what happened to him on his last mission. Charlotte sets out to uncover what happened to her father. Josie and Eloise’s POVs are both set during the war. Both women are SOE and are on different missions. Their lives are all connected to Noah’s, but we don’t know how at the beginning of the book. One of the things that I enjoyed about this story is that there is a mystery component to the story. We know something went wrong, but we don’t know who the double agent is and what happened during that mission. This desire or need to know what happened created a sense of urgency in me and made me want to turn the page because I needed to know what would happen next. 

Like most of Kelly’s books, the characters in The Paris Agent often have to operate in that morally grey zone to survive. The choices they have to make along the way often have me pondering what I would do if I was in their position. I always love a book that makes you think and feel, and this book does that for me. Your heart will race when you read Eloise and Josie’s chapters. Being secret agents operating in occupied France means they are always playing a game of cat and mouse with Nazi soldiers; I found myself holding my breath numerous times. 

The Paris Agent is an unforgettable historical fiction novel, and I cannot wait to see what Kelly writes next. 

Thank you, HarperCollins Canada for the copy in exchange for an honest review.