Wednesday, September 2, 2015

REVIEW: A Chance Kill by Paul Letters

A Chance Kill
by Paul Letters

Publisher: Silverwood Books
Page Count: 300
Release Date: February 26, 2015
Format: Kindle

How got: personal library; bought from Amazon

First attention getter: synopsis


From GoodReads:

An old-fashioned love story weaves through an authentic wartime thriller. Can individuals shape destiny? Or is it all by chance?

Based upon real events, seventeen-year-old Polish catholic Dyta ZajÄ…c finds herself forced away from wartime Warsaw due to her family’s shadowy connections. Dyta’s time on the run sets her on a path towards confronting the ultimate Nazi.

Half a continent away, an RAF bomber crew embarks upon Britain’s little-known first offensive of the war. In a story of fear versus hope, the unspoken limits of loyalty are exposed and the value of a compromised life is contested. Courtship edges Dyta’s destiny closer to that of members of the RAF crew – and toward the Allies’ most brazen covert operation to strike at the Nazi elite.

Even more dangerous than the enemy, however, is the assumption that your enemy’s enemy is your friend...

My Thoughts:

Star Rating - 4

This book had a ton of story to tell. Dramatic escapes, assassinations, mistaken identity, romance, and resistance against the Nazis play center stage. The reader is never left with scenes that dragged or overblown dialogue exchanges.

I also liked how much of WWII Europe the author explored. Poland right after the invasion, the mass exodus from France in ’40, war torn London, life in the RAF, and resistance in Prague all make an appearance. The research the author put into this book definitely shows through.

I loved the details, especially about the Czech resistance, the assassination of Heydrich, and its aftermath. This period of the war isn’t as explored as the resistance in France and Poland, probably because Heydrich was so successful in rooting it out so early in the war. The author gives us an intimate look at this very dangerous part of Europe for Resistance fighters.

I liked both leads, Dyta a bit more since we got far more of an exploration of her and her motives. I liked how we got to see war torn Europe through her and her actions. At times, she came across as too perfect: beautiful, competent, cunning, and brave. But I felt there were enough faults to leaven that too-perfect nature out when all is said and done.

I do have a bit of an issue with the ending. It seemed too open to be completely satisfying. I was longing to see the fallout from Tom’s reaction to Dyta’s final actions. I wanted to see how that would impact any further relationship. Also, the dramatic content and intensity of the story seemed to overshadow the intimate at times. I felt like the characters were subsumed by the war and got lost in the shuffle.

A pretty solid war thriller, this book tells an intense story of advancing armies, resistance, and survival against pretty high odds. I liked the characters overall and definitely appreciated the details and the depth of research. The ending left much to be desired and the intensity of the story had a downfall. Yet, I’d definitely recommend this one to lovers of WWII fiction. It’s a great portrayal of that great event and the people involved.

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