Author: Julia Kelly
Series: Parisian Orphan #1
Published by: Minotaur Books on Oct. 3, 2023
Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery/Thriller
Format: ARC, Paperback
Source: Minotaur Books
Book Rating: 8.5/10
From Julia Kelly, internationally bestselling author of The Last Dance of the Debutante, comes the first in the mysterious and immersive Parisian Orphan series, A Traitor in Whitehall.
1940, England: Evelyne Redfern, known as “The Parisian Orphan” as a child, is working on the line at a munitions factory in wartime London. When Mr. Fletcher, one of her father’s old friends, spots Evelyne on a night out, Evelyne finds herself plunged into the world of Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s cabinet war rooms.
However, shortly after she settles into her new role as a secretary, one of the girls at work is murdered, and Evelyne must use all of her amateur sleuthing expertise to find the killer. But doing so puts her right in the path of David Poole, a cagey minister’s aide who seems determined to thwart her investigations. That is, until Evelyne finds out David’s real mission is to root out a mole selling government secrets to Britain’s enemies, and the pair begrudgingly team up.
With her quick wit, sharp eyes, and determination, will Evelyne be able to find out who’s been selling England’s secrets and catch a killer, all while battling her growing attraction to David?
Mysterious, atmospheric, and engaging!
A Traitor in Whitehall is a suspenseful tale that takes us back to 1941 London and into the life of Evelyne Redfern who, after stumbling upon the body of a fellow secretary on her first day working in Winston Churchill’s war rooms, finds herself embroiled in a murder investigation that’s a little more complex than it originally appears, and for which she may have to join forces with the enigmatic, handsome David Poole who seems to be secretly working on a case of his own.
The prose is descriptive and light. The characters, including the intelligent, independent heroine, are multi-layered, intriguing, and well-developed. And the plot is a well-paced whodunit full of red herrings, duplicity, amateur sleuthing, deduction, attraction, and, of course, a touch of the unexpected.
Overall, A Traitor in Whitehall is the first book in the Parisian Orphan series, and if you love historical mysteries, this one won’t disappoint. It’s an entertaining, cosy, satisfying tale by Kelly that is not only a real treat to read, but a great start to what could be a fantastic new series in a slightly different genre than the author is predominantly known and revered for.
This novel is available October 3, 2023.
Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.
Thank you to St. Martin’s Press – Minotaur Books for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.