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19 May 2013

Robert Craven: Get Lenin

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I like WWII espionage/thrillers, and this is an unexpectedly good one. In some ways it reminded me of the classic Jack Higgins' book - "The Eagle has Landed" - where the Germans tried to kidnap Churchill to demoralise the British war effort. This time the plot is to "kidnap" Lenin's body and put it on display in Berlin to demoralise the Soviet people.

We meet Eva Molenaar when her boy-friend is killed by Nazi brownshirts. When she recovers from the shock she vows to get revenge, and that revenge comes when she is recruited by Polish intelligence and then by MI5 to get them information from inside Germany. With her considerable language skills and and beauty she befriends the Mosley clique in England and meets a rich US sympathiser who has entry into Hitler's inner circle.

The seductive Polish-born spy puts her body on the line at the heart of the Reich to provide British spymaster Henry Chainbridge with vital intelligence about German plans, especially one concocted by Himmler to kidnap Lenin's mausoleum as the German armies close in on Moscow.

While I found some of the kidnapping action a bit over the top it would probably make a great movie. This was a good  and enjoyable first novel by Robert Craven and I look forward to reading the sequel Zinnman very soon.

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