MacArthur's Spies: The Soldier, the Singer, and the Spymaster Who Defied the Japanese in World War II by Peter Eisner

MacArthur's Spies: The Soldier, the Singer, and the Spymaster Who Defied the Japanese in World War II

A thrilling story of espionage, daring and deception set in the exotic landscape of occupied Manila during World War II. On January 2, 1942, Japanese troops marched into Manila unopposed by U.S. forces. Manila was a strategic port, a romantic American outpost and a jewel of a city. Tokyo saw its conquest of the Philippines as the key in its plan to control all of Asia, inc...

Title:MacArthur's Spies: The Soldier, the Singer, and the Spymaster Who Defied the Japanese in World War II
Author:
Rating:
ISBN:0525429654
Edition Language:English
Number of Pages:368 pages

MacArthur's Spies: The Soldier, the Singer, and the Spymaster Who Defied the Japanese in World War II Reviews

  • Elizabeth

    by:

    4.5

    what is it about:

    MacArthur's Spiesreads like Casablancaset in the Pacific, filled with brave and daring characters caught up in the intrigue of war and the best part is that it's all true!" Tom Maier, author of Masters of Sex

    A thrilling story of espionage, daring and deception set in the exotic landscape of occupied Manila during World War II.

    On January 2, 1942, Japanese troo

    by:

    4.5

    what is it about:

    MacArthur's Spiesreads like Casablancaset in the Pacific, filled with brave and daring characters caught up in the intrigue of war and the best part is that it's all true!" Tom Maier, author of Masters of Sex

    A thrilling story of espionage, daring and deception set in the exotic landscape of occupied Manila during World War II.

    On January 2, 1942, Japanese troops marched into Manila unopposed by U.S. forces. Manila was a strategic port, a romantic American outpost and a jewel of a city. Tokyo saw its conquest of the Philippines as the key in its plan to control all of Asia, including Australia. Thousands of soldiers surrendered and were sent on the notorious eighty-mile Bataan Death March. But thousands of other Filipinos and Americans refused to surrender and hid in the Luzon hills above Bataan and Manila. MacArthur's Spies is the story of three of them, and how they successfully foiled the Japanese for more than two years, sabotaging Japanese efforts and preparing the way for MacArthur s return.

    From a jungle hideout, Colonel John Boone, an enlisted American soldier, led an insurgent force of Filipino fighters who infiltrated Manila as workers and servants to stage demolitions and attacks.

    Chick Parsons, an American businessman, polo player, and expatriate in Manila, was also a U.S. Navy intelligence officer. He escaped in the guise of a Panamanian diplomat, and returned as MacArthur s spymaster, coordinating the guerrilla efforts with the planned Allied invasion.

    And, finally, there was Claire Phillips, an itinerant American torch singer with many names and almost as many husbands. Her nightclub in Manila served as a cover for supplying food to Americans in the hills and to thousands of prisoners of war. She and the men and women who worked with her gathered information from the collaborating Filipino businessmen; the homesick, English-speaking Japanese officers; and the spies who mingled in the crowd.

    Readers of Alan Furst and Ben Macintyre and anyone who loves Casablanca will relish this true tale of heroism when it counted the most."

    what I thought of it:

    Peter Eisner has a way of bring to life the characters that was and are in this book , as I was reading it felt like I could feel and hear everything his characters went though, it shows how strong and how brave and resourceful the people in the Philippines were during this time as they were in the face of danger ,knowing that if they were caught they could lose their very lives , how the Japanese were cruel ,and how they forced march the prisoners of war with the intent to kill, brutalize ,weaken and or demoralize the prisoners as possible along the way. This is a book that I think everyone should at lest pick up and read , so with that said I would love to say thinks to Netgalley for giving me a change at read and review this book in a change for my honest opinion. Will be picking up an actual copy when I can.

  • Sherwood Smith

    With meticulous, sometimes bulldoggishly exhausting detail of minor points, Eisner paints a vivid picture of Manila before the war, a jewel of a city, cosmopolitan and pleasant to live in, cultured and beautiful. Business people from all over the world, including the USA traded there—and many settled to live.

    Especially relevant today, Eisner shows how at first no one can believe that the peace will be disturbed—Japan won’t make it that far—and when that is proved wrong, just how unsettlingly fas

    With meticulous, sometimes bulldoggishly exhausting detail of minor points, Eisner paints a vivid picture of Manila before the war, a jewel of a city, cosmopolitan and pleasant to live in, cultured and beautiful. Business people from all over the world, including the USA traded there—and many settled to live.

    Especially relevant today, Eisner shows how at first no one can believe that the peace will be disturbed—Japan won’t make it that far—and when that is proved wrong, just how unsettlingly fast the fragile infrastructure of a city can fall apart, leaving people scrabbling for food and clean water, and medicine as the conquerors stride among them slapping and striking anyone who doesn’t bow, or get out of the way, or who looks suspicious. He also describes what happened when the defeated forces surrendered—the lies the Japanese commanders told, before the atrocity called the Bataan death march.

    And at the end of the war, with equally vivid description, he shows how the POWs under the Japanese were either slaughtered or forced into hell ships to be taken to labor camps in Japan; many of those ships were bombed, as no one knew that thousands of men were jammed knee to knee in the hold. He estimates 21,000 American POWs died this way.

    So the rescue action to try to liberate the prisons became extra tense, as MacArthur’s forces fought, inch by inch, building by building (sometimes floor by floor) to retake Manila.

    But that’s the general shape of the book. The main focus are the colorful figures who ended up as resistors and spies.

    Central is the enigmatic Claire Phillips, a not-quite-professional American torch singer who had as many aliases as she did husbands—married serially, without benefit of divorce. She went back to Manila in 1941, with her adopted two year old daughter, and when Japan struck, at first she stayed with relations of one of her husbands, then she ended up a fugitive in the hills, working as a nurse until she was too ill to move.

    After she ended up back in Manila, she eventually started a nightclub, which served as a cover for supplying food to Americans in the hills and to thousands of starved, beaten, an abused prisoners of war.

    The girls who worked for her elicited info from the Japanese officers who visited the club, and she conveyed the info as well as what supplies she could garner to Colonel John Boone, an American soldier, who led a force of Filipino guerrilla fighters, most of whom hid in the hills under great privation, but many of whom sneaked into Manila under cover as workers, to fight back with covert strikes.

    Then there was Chick Parsons of the U.S. Navy intelligence, who was also a businessman, polo player, and expat living in Manila. When Japan took over, he managed to escape by faking an entire embassy—he became the envoy from Panama, and pulled it off! When he returned, it was as a spy for MacArthur, coordinating the guerrilla efforts with the planned Allied invasion.

    A host of others get less attention, such as Peggy Utinsky, who courageously followed her husband to Manila when he was ordered to report. She ended up taking care of Claire’s little daughter while Claire was acting under cover, and when Claire got violently ill. When he was killed in action, Peggy became an alcoholic, but still kept working undercover; in the brutal last days of the war, when Claire was captured and taken for interrogation and torture, she ran to the hills, where she began to break down. Later she ended up in prison with Claire, and the two women’s relationship unraveled, to the point that after the war, they each accused the other of various things.

    Also with less attention were the Filipino heroes working against the conquerors, many alongside the foreigners caught there: the Roxas brothers, famous in Manila, who maintained a dangerous line between cooperation with the conquerors and secretly helping the resistance. Then there was Fely Corcuera, who faithfully helped Claire and acted as courier; Lorenza Amusategui, whose husband Ramon was a real hero, working tirelessly for the underground resistance, and in the last days of the war, when the Japanese commander became even more savage at hunting down resistance, insisted that all his contacts, including Claire, blame him for everything, as he knew he would get caught and eventually killed. And he did. Naomi Flores was another largely unsung hero, then there was Roy C. Bennett, who endured over a year of torture and privation.

    Eisner shows how complex these people were: heroism comes in many types, and it can have its fallout. The after war story is particularly messy, as after war stories often are. Overall, it makes absorbing reading, touching on the heroism of the Filipinos under horrible conditions, and relevant today, what with self-absorbed pirates masquerading as politicians thumping their chests and threatening to make war into a game.

    Copy courtesy NetGalley

  • Chad

    I got this book from a Goodreads drawing, and I’m super-excited to review it!

    Eisner, with not a lot to work with, is able to piece together an engaging story surrounding the events of the Japanese occupation of the Philippines in World War II. The book deals with the events surrounding Claire Phillips, an undercover American who aided prisoners of war and guerilla fighters; Chick Parsons, who coordinated many of the spying efforts within the Philippines; and John Boone, who was a leader within t

    I got this book from a Goodreads drawing, and I’m super-excited to review it!

    Eisner, with not a lot to work with, is able to piece together an engaging story surrounding the events of the Japanese occupation of the Philippines in World War II. The book deals with the events surrounding Claire Phillips, an undercover American who aided prisoners of war and guerilla fighters; Chick Parsons, who coordinated many of the spying efforts within the Philippines; and John Boone, who was a leader within the guerilla army.

    The story of Claire Phillips has been difficult to retell, because of popularized accounts in film and print, and because of the lack of documentation available. Eisner acknowledges that the only way he was able to put together a more factual account was the availability of Claire’s diary that became available after her trial regarding compensation for her efforts during the war.

    Eisner sticks very close to the facts—but sometimes this dulls the story. The popularized accounts are definitely too far gone, but without insights into motivation or perspectives prevalent at the time made it difficult to empathize with the characters. I mean, donating such huge amounts of food and supplies to the war efforts seem amazing feats. What motivated these people? I would have appreciated a more nuanced interpretation of events.

    Similarly, I was left curious regarding the Japanese account of events. The Japanese were treated more fairly than in Manila Espionage (Eisner points out the very obvious racism present), but even in Eisner’s account, the Japanese are painted as war criminals. I would have been curious to find out more about Japanese perspectives of the time, what pressures they felt from their superiors, why the Japanese worldview was not appealing to Filipinos, etc. Some of this was covered, but it felt superficially done. While I am definitely a patriotic American, this book fits too well into the glorious and generous victors narrative. Looking at his sources, they seem to mostly be pulled from American and some Filipino archives. I would have appreciated more Japanese ones as well.

    I did get more engaged at the end of the book, where the nuances of the story did become more apparent. Claire was a complicated character: “Good spies and heroes are not necessarily Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts.” There was rivalry between the former spy group over how the narrative was told, who got the credit, and how much compensation they should receive. The truth of the narrative was obscured in popularized accounts when Americans were hungry for war heroes. Surprisingly, it was this part of the book that I most connected with and found the most engaging.

    @VikingBooks

  • Nancy Oakes

    thank you to Nora @ Viking.

  • Paromjit

    This is an unusual history book that sheds light on the brutal occupation of Manila and the Philippines by the Japanese in the Second World War. The Japanese were not expected to invade, perhaps explains why the Japanese took over so easily, with huge numbers of soldiers surrendering and set on the harrowing eighty mile Bataan Death March. This books looks at three expatriate Americans who played a central role in garnering and co-ordinating the resistance against the Japanese. The author, Peter

    This is an unusual history book that sheds light on the brutal occupation of Manila and the Philippines by the Japanese in the Second World War. The Japanese were not expected to invade, perhaps explains why the Japanese took over so easily, with huge numbers of soldiers surrendering and set on the harrowing eighty mile Bataan Death March. This books looks at three expatriate Americans who played a central role in garnering and co-ordinating the resistance against the Japanese. The author, Peter Eisner, is particularly interested and obsessed in the life of singer, Clare Philips, a woman with a multitude of names and a talent for deception that renders her an able spy. There is much myth and untruths about Clare, much of it perpetrated by her. Eisner untangles the truth and finds a story that deserves to be told as he uncovers material hidden in the National Archives in Washington DC and Maryland through sheer persistence.

    The Japanese invaded in January 1942, with the strategic aims of cutting supplies to the Allied Forces and to give them a key position in Asia. Eisner looks at the role played by enlisted soldier, Corporal John Boone, who led the guerrilla resistance with attacks and sabotage in Manila. Businessman and Naval Intelligence Officer, Chick Parsons, is an important spy for MacArthur in paving his return with the planned Allied invasion. Parsons shows real chutzpah in posing as a Panamanian diplomat of a fake Panamanian Embassy. The men occupy a minor role in a story that revolves around Clare who also has a daughter to look after. Clare, known as High Pockets, opens a nightclub, the Tsubaki Club, catering for Japanese officers. She gained and collated intelligence from her girls and passed it on to the resistance. She supplied the resistance and those in the prisoner of war camps with food as well. Eisner paints a picture of the privations, deaths and suffering in Manila with detailed descriptions and at the end gives us information on what happened to key individuals after the war.

    Perhaps the greatest shortcomings of the book is the too brief look at the efforts of the key local individuals who played a major role in undermining the Japanese regime. This is not an area of history I am overly familiar with and I was surprised at the ease in which Eisner draws me into the characters and this period of history. I particularly enjoyed the black and white photographs in the book of the characters, Manila, detainees and the return of the Americans. Eisner does a good job of placing the Philippines resistance amidst the broader canvas of World War Two. I recommend this book strongly for those interested in espionage, history and the role women played in the conflict. Many thanks to Nora Alice and Random House Viking for an ARC.

  • Cassie Troja

    MacArthur's Spies is a harrowing tale of heroism and espionage in the Philippines during World War II. The author chose to focus on the people and events surrounding three main players: Claire (the primary character and the "Singer" in the title), Boone (the "Soldier"), and Chick Parsons (the "Spymaster"). It is broken into five parts: 1) Claire's life before WWII and the Philippines leading in

    MacArthur's Spies is a harrowing tale of heroism and espionage in the Philippines during World War II. The author chose to focus on the people and events surrounding three main players: Claire (the primary character and the "Singer" in the title), Boone (the "Soldier"), and Chick Parsons (the "Spymaster"). It is broken into five parts: 1) Claire's life before WWII and the Philippines leading into war with Japan; 2) war in the Philippines and the US surrender; 3) life in the Philippines under Japanese occupation; 4) liberation by the US and life immediately following the war; and finally 5) Claire's life in her later years and her battle to get compensation from the US government.

    I call myself a World War II history nut, but I have a shameful confession - I am one of those who focuses mostly on the European theater, especially the Holocaust. I know very little about the Pacific theater, especially other than Pearl Harbor. Shameful, I know! I chose to read this book in an effort to remedy that and I'm sure glad I did. Despite the somewhat misleading title, the book mostly focuses on Claire - her life, her relationships, her many aliases, and her contributions to the resistance efforts. She was a woman of many mysteries, having married at least four times and somehow adopted a little Filipino girl along the way. Though she aspired to be a performer, she wasn't successful until she opened a nightclub in Manila during the Japanese occupation. At that point she became "Madame Tsubaki," and one of the leaders of the efforts to surreptitiously support both the American POWs interred on the islands and the guerrillas hiding in the densely forested hills. Boone was her contact with the guerrillas. He had escaped capture during the US surrender and led a large contingent of American and Filipino fighters. He was in direct contact with General MacArthur himself via the spymaster, Chick Parsons. Chick had originally escaped imprisonment by masquerading as a somewhat-legitimate diplomat. After his escape, he asked to return and be put to work in the efforts to recapture the Philippines. Without spoiling too many details, we know the historical outcome - MacArthur did indeed return in resounding triumph to liberate the Philippines and vanquish the evil (in this instance) Japanese. He credited much of the success of his campaign to the intelligence gathered by Claire, Boone, Parsons, and their extended network. Many American POWs and guerrillas also owed their lives to Claire and others who provided supplies and money whenever possible. Claire returned to the US a hero. She even wrote a book and had a movie made, although both suffered from the Hollywood effect of an over-eager ghost writer. She spent years trying to get compensation from the US government for all of the money she spent of her own funds to help the guerrillas and POWs. Due to many factors, including the incredible number of people making similar claims, Claire only received a fraction of what she spent. The Filipino people honored her sacrifice after her death by memorializing her in the capitol building in Manila.

    This book was written by a reporter, and as such it carries with it that style. It is fast-paced and filled with facts expounded by conjecture. Mr. Eisner did a ton of research, even dusting off the court documents from Claire's claim. He is to be commended for his hard work in being thorough, even traveling to the Philippines and interviewing family members and survivors. Claire was a mysterious character and given what little is truly known about her identity, Mr. Eisner did a wonderful job of making her an intriguing character. I only wish he'd been able to expound more on Boone and his troops, or on Chick Parson's harrowing experiences being spirited back and forth behind enemy lines on submarines. There's no doubt that Claire was a hero in her own right; I just would have liked to know more about the other heroes listed in the title (namely Boone and Parsons).

    The format in the digital version was all over the place and at times this made it difficult to read. However, I have a feeling this is due to it being an advanced copy adapted for Kindle (similar to a PDF) and is not the fault of the publisher or author.

    There were also times that sentences and/or phrases were awkwardly repeated, or the editing wasn't complete so that the sentence structure was clumsy. Again, with a final edit I'm sure this will be corrected. It in no way detracted from the story itself.

    My only other criticism is that I would have like to have seen any photos that survived. The author mentions a specific photo - that of Peggy in front of the Tsubaki Club - several times. Why wasn't it included? Again, this might be due to the nature of this particular digital format. Still, I might have to google that photo as well as others of Claire, Boone, etc. They're such intriguing characters!

    While I still maintain that the title is a little misleading (this is really a book about Claire, with asides about her "supporting cast" and "costars"), the book itself is very enlightening. I had no idea that the Philippines were so crucial in the Pacific war, let alone how much the American POWs and Filipinos suffered (aside from the Bataan Death March - everyone knows about Bataan...I hope...). I would definitely recommend this book for it's educational value alone, let alone the heroism of the people it portrays. I will always have the utmost respect for "The Greatest Generation," especially after reading accounts such as this. I am grateful to Mr. Eisner for highlighting these international heroes!

  • Thomas

    4.5*

    This book almost reads like a spy novel. It details the exploits of various spies and guerilla fighters during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines 1942-1944. All of it actually happened. Some American and Filipino soldiers never surrendered. They hid out in the mountains. MacArthur sent word that they were not to attack the Japanese, because the Japanese would bring down horrible reprisals on innocent civilians. So they mostly collected intelligence and stole supplies from the Japanes

    4.5*

    This book almost reads like a spy novel. It details the exploits of various spies and guerilla fighters during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines 1942-1944. All of it actually happened. Some American and Filipino soldiers never surrendered. They hid out in the mountains. MacArthur sent word that they were not to attack the Japanese, because the Japanese would bring down horrible reprisals on innocent civilians. So they mostly collected intelligence and stole supplies from the Japanese. Not until near the end of the war did they actually attack the Japanese troops.

    One of the heroes is Claire Phillips, whose code name was "High Pockets." She started a night club called Madame Tsubaki in Manila. It was very popular with Japanese officers and soldiers. She and her beautiful hostesses would get the Japanese drunk and get information which she sent to John Boone, the leader of the guerillas in the mountains. She spent thousands of pesos(2 pesos=$1) of her own money to buy food, clothing and medical supplies for the guerillas and prisoners of war. Testimony in the court trial after the war proved that many would have died were it not for her efforts organizing a supply chain to get supplies to POWs and guerillas. Unfortunately a mean spirited US government denied most of her claims and she received a pittance.

    The US government only recently, in 2009, agreed to compensate Filipino guerilla fighters. This was not mentioned in the text, but in the notes on sources.

    The spymaster in the title is Chick Parsons who left the Philippines through a diplomatic exchange(he had falsely claimed to be a citizen of Panama). One of the author's sources is Peter Parsons, Chick's son.

    The author has done a great deal of research and there are extensive notes on his sources and yes I read all of his notes. I recommend this book both to history fans and spy book fans.

    Update Aug 16, 2017: I just watched the author talk about his book on CSPAN. CSPAN has a website booktv.org and you can access his talk on the internet. It is worthwhile if you haven't read the book and if you have, you will like being able to listen to the author talk about how he put the book together.

    Thanks to the publisher for sending me this book through NetGalley.

  • Will Byrnes

    We all know what happened on December 7, 1941. On December 8, 1941, the Japanese destroyed the United States Air Force in Manila, then the US naval presence. In January, 1942, Japan invaded the Philippines, driving American forces, led by General Douglas MacArthur, from the islands, defeating the Philippine militar

    We all know what happened on December 7, 1941. On December 8, 1941, the Japanese destroyed the United States Air Force in Manila, then the US naval presence. In January, 1942, Japan invaded the Philippines, driving American forces, led by General Douglas MacArthur, from the islands, defeating the Philippine military forces, and settling in to occupy the nation for the next several years. But their time on the Philippines was not all chrysanthemums and saki. The Bataan Death March did not corral all the combatants.

    - from his site

    Claire Phillips, or Clara Mabel De La Taste, of Howard City, Michigan, or Dorothy Smith, or Mabel C. Enette. Choose one, or several. There are more if you want. The woman we call Claire here went through name changes even more frequently than she went through husbands and boyfriends. Turns out that a degree of

    , particularly in wartime, can be a good thing. She had been in Manila for some time before the war, singing for a living, and stayed on once things got hot. She also worked as a nurse, and later applied her cabaret talents to open a bar in occupied Manila. She called herself Madame Tsubaki, and kept her Japanese military clientele coming with cabaret shows featuring both Japanese and American music. She and her staff kept their ears and eyes open, their guests well-treated, and became a major source of military intelligence behind the lines.

    John Boone, 29, an American corporal who had evaded capture, began recruiting locals to form a guerilla resistance.

    Chick Parsons, 41, was an American businessman, pretending to be a representative of Panama. He had been an officer in the US Navy for many years, a submariner. He had lived in the Philippines for a long time, as a merchant seaman. He also worked as a stenographer to the US governor, General Leonard Wood, in which job he traveled extensively in the country, and learned its geography. In addition, he married a local woman. Secretly, he had been recalled to duty on December 8, 1941, as a spy. He would become a significant leader in intelligence gathering in the Philippines.

    - from Eisner’s site

    Peter Eisner, weaves together the stories of these three heroes to paint a portrait of a part of World War II that does not get nearly the bandwidth dedicated to the European theater. Manila was a crucial strategic piece for Japan, allowing them to shorten their supply lines, move their strike capability closer to their targets, and control sea lanes critical to the pursuit of the war. It was critical to them gaining control of all Asia. The Allies were determined to regain control, but that would take years. In the meantime, Boone and his guerillas did what they could to disrupt Japanese supplies. Claire and her operation sent information to Boone, to be forwarded to MacArthur. She also organized aid missions to the Americans and others being held in several concentration camps in and around Manila.

    The book purports to be about “The Soldier, The Singer and the Spymaster,” and each

    covered, but hardly to the same degree. The preponderance of the focus here is on Claire, which is not, necessarily a bad thing, as she is, arguably, the most interesting of the three. In truth, Parsons deserves a book of his own, but Boone is a pretty pure heroic sort, lacking the diversity of intriguing talents and personality that Claire and Parsons tote. The designer of the book cover got this right, but the cover text is a bit misleading, and the title should have been less equivocal. One of the primary resources for the story was Clair’s diary, which certainly leads the story in her direction.

    Most of us have probably read books about what the occupation looked like in places like Paris and Warsaw, but Manila has gotten a lot less press. Eisner amply demonstrates here how miserable, and deadly, it was to be living under Japanese occupation, reporting on many of the details of daily life, the constant insults inflicted on the Filipino people by a brutish regime. Eisner let us in on details like what foods were in short supply, which Filipino officials were only going along to get along, but were secretly supporting the resistance. He brings to our notice many of the ways in which Claire and others managed to get messages to those who needed them, how they got money, food, medical and other supplies to prisoners, and passed along messages from those prisoners. It is practically a how-to for setting up a low-tech spying network.

    He also describes some of the softer side, occupiers who were clearly not on board with the demands for brutality from on high. Occupiers who were human. Those people were soon replaced with harsher representatives of the Land of the Rising Sun. The inability of the local occupiers to eliminate the resistance was a sore point with leaders back home.

    One of the most dangerous elements in the enterprise was the problem of human personality. All it would take was one squeaky wheel, one loose link in the chain, for everyone involved to be arrested and executed. There are several scares along these lines, to the point where things needed to be reorganized to minimize the risk of exposure. And of course, where there are spies, there are counter-spies. So, a risky business indeed.

    Claire may be a very flawed individual, but she is a flawed individual who stepped up and did a service for her country when she was needed, under terrifying conditions, and did it in a way that few others could have managed. We might like our heroes a little less compromised, but that is one of the things that makes her such an intriguing character.

    Eisner, an award-winning reporter, foreign correspondent, bureau chief, PBS producer, and historian, continues, after the war, to follow Claire’s life, mostly, and, in particular, her legal battles with the US government for just compensation for her wartime efforts. Also, she wrote a memoir that was probably not entirely truthful and was muddied even more by her editors. It brought her particular fame when it was made into a cheesy movie. The inaccurate depiction of facts there generated some controversy. One particular participant in the spy effort made it a point to challenge Claire’s version of events. Frankly, while I do believe that there is merit in looking at how efforts undertaken in the heart of wartime can be treated so coldly once the war is over, most of this could have been left out, or covered with a brief overview.

    There is certainly a

    vibe to a considerable portion of the book. One could easily see a pared down version of this story making a wonderful film, rich with romance, intrigue and mortal peril.

    So, bottom line is that this is a very interesting look at an under-covered aspect of World War II. It may go into a bit

    in its detail, but that is a small downside in an otherwise fascinating look at a time, a place, and a spy most of us have never heard of. Thankfully, you will not have to hide your cash inside wrapped food and arrange to have it delivered to your bookseller by a willing local in order to check this book out. Reading this book will keep you well occupied, and you can do it out in the open, at least until the next war.

    Review posted – August 11, 2017

    Published – May 2, 2017

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    Links to the author’s

    ,

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    pages

    from the Philippines

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