[E-ARC] Secrets and Spies: The Moroccan Girl by Charles Cumming

the moroccan girl
Title: The Moroccan Girl
Author: Charles Cumming
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Publication Date: February 12, 2019
Rating: 4/5 stars
Links: Goodreads, Amazon

Synopsis:

Kit Carradine is the successful author of several best-selling novels. When he is approached by MI6 and asked to carry out a simple task on behalf of his country while attending a literary festival in Morocco, he jumps at the chance.

But all is not as it seems. Carradine soon finds himself on the trail of Lara Bartok, a leading figure in Resurrection, a violent revolutionary movement targeting prominent right-wing political figures around the world. Caught between competing intelligence services who want Bartok dead, Carradine faces a choice: to abandon Bartok to her fate or to risk everything trying to save her.

Review: 

I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press!

The Moroccan Girl was a fun, action-packed mystery thriller which had a lot of twists and surprises in store. It’s about Kit Carradine, an author who’s written several best-selling novels about spies who gets roped into a job for the MI6 to locate Lara Bartok, a former member and leading figure of the far-left insurrection group called Resurrection, as well as the ex-girlfriend of its late leader. Along the way, we discover what’s really going on and not everything is as it appears to be on the surface.

The twists and revelations really got me glued to my screen and keep reading. I wondered about what else was going to happen and what previously know “facts” were going to be turned on its head.

Kit Carradine is the image of the noble but naive protagonist who, wanting to serve Queen and country, is entangled in a plot more sinister than what he could have imagined in his books. He’s genuine in his desire to help and often gets frustrated when it doesn’t quite pan out.

Meanwhile, Lara is a woman trying to run from her past. She joined Resurrection an idealist, believing in Ivan Simakov and his principle of effective non-violent resistance. When that changed, she ran and became a wanted woman. I admire Lara for her intelligence, for her sharp wit, and the fact that she clearly knows what she’s doing. She’s a fascinating character and I loved how she had a lot of agency in the story.

I enjoyed the Moroccan setting and I could almost imagine Casablanca while I was reading the descriptions. I also like how as the setting changes, the plot also takes a different turn.

As I mentioned, the plot is fast-paced. After Lara is found, the revelations started coming and wouldn’t stop. The endgame where we learn what’s really happening came as a surprise and was really jaw-dropping.

A note on the politics. I appreciated how the book doesn’t state that either of the left or the right are correct. Nor does it claim that both sides are the same. It doesn’t take sides and in the end, what it criticizes is foreign intervention- or at least, that’s how I see it.

The writing is clear and unadorned, suited for a spy thriller. It’s also told in chapters told from Carradine’s point of view with some classified documents featuring Lara’s statement. It’s pretty good and I enjoyed reading each chapter.

Overall, I can recommend The Moroccan Girl if you like thrillers and spy novels.

Advertisements

2 thoughts on “[E-ARC] Secrets and Spies: The Moroccan Girl by Charles Cumming

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s