Mystery Monday: Great WWII Mysteries
N or M, published by Christie in 1941 featured the first novel of a “grown-up” version of Tommy and Tuppence Beresford, husband and wife amateur sleuths who first appeared in 1922. The title is taken from a catechism in the Book of Common Prayer which asks “What is your Christian Name?” Answer: N or M; the initials representing the Latin “nomen veil nomina” meaning “name or names.”
Years have passed since the couple’s career with British intelligence, and the Second World War has broken out when they are approached by a secret agent to go undercover to find German spies and fifth columnists. Filled with cryptic messages and clues, Tommy and Tuppence make their way to the fictional seaside town of Leahampton to investigate the situation. Twists and turns abound, but the Beresfords eventually find their man…and woman.
Reviews of the book were glowing including one by E.R. Punshon touting “Mrs. Christie shows herself as ingenious as ever, and one admires especially the way in which the hero snores himself out of captivity.” Sounds intriguing, doesn’t it?
Interestingly, Christie was the subject of an MI5 investigation after naming one of the novel’s characters Major Bletchley. Their fears were unfounded as she revealed the as one of her “least lovable characters,” the man had been named area of Milton Keynes where she’d been stuck during a train journey.
The third and final novel is a thriller published in 1943. The Blackbirder follows the exploits of a young woman who has fled occupied Paris and her Nazi-sympathizer uncle and finds herself as an illegal immigrant in New York City. Because of her status she tries to keep a low profile, but when a man she knew in France is found dead outside her apartment, she must once again flee for her life. In order to leave the country, she must find The Blackbirder, a man who guides people across the US-Mexican border, but in the meantime, she must stay ahead of the Gestapo and the FBI she thinks is trailing her. Plenty of shadowy figures come and go, and tension is high as readers wonder who is trustworthy.
What’s your favorite mystery novel published during WWII?
About Under Cover
When a bombing raid destroys her home and unearths a twenty-year-old skeleton in the cellar, her reporter’s senses tingle in anticipation of solving another mystery. Unfortunately, the by-the-book detective inspector assigned to the case is not interested in her theories. As Ruth investigates the case on her own, she butts heads with the handsome policeman.
Will she get to the bottom of the story before the killer strikes again?
Purchase Link: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B083C61SJT