Sunday, June 05, 2022

The Physicists' Daughter by Mary Anna Evans

 
First Line: September 1944. Justine Byrne liked taking out the trash.

After making numerous repairs on equipment that keeps failing for no good reason, Justine Byrne knows there has to be a saboteur in the factory where workers are constructing planes, ships, and top-secret parts in the Carbon Division.

Having been raised by her physicist parents to think logically, Justine also can't help thinking about the oddly shaped carbon gadgets being manufactured and shipped out as quickly as possible. It only makes sense that those items are important to the war effort and something the saboteur is willing to kill for.

Is there anyone that Justine can trust in her determination to find the spy in the factory? She could be killed if she relies on the wrong person.
 

~

The Physicists' Daughter is quite a break from author Mary Anna Evans' Faye Longchamp series about an archaeologist in Florida, and she handles the World War II setting with aplomb. Justine and her newly found best friend Georgette Broussard give readers a taste of what Rosie the Riveter had to contend with in war-time factory work, but it's not all work and no play. Justine, whose life has always centered on education and the mind, learns how to jitterbug and how to deal with the men buzzing around her like bees-- with the help of Georgette, that is.
 
Other characters, like Mavis, whose job doesn't begin to cover the loss of her husband's wages now that he's fighting in the war; Georgette, my favorite character who comes from a poverty-stricken background out in the bayous of Louisiana; and Justine's Aunt Gloria (is she or is she not paranoid?) keep the story moving as the reader tries to guess the identity of the spy in their midst.
 
An extremely dangerous scene at the end is compelling, and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that my deductions weren't entirely correct. All in all, The Physicists' Daughter is a fast-paced tale filled with plenty of interesting characters and World War II flavor. 
 
The Physicists' Daughter by Mary Anna Evans
eISBN: 9781464215568
Poisoned Pen Press © 2022
eBook, 352 pages
 
Historical Mystery, Standalone
Rating: B+
Source: Net Galley

15 comments:

  1. This has such an interesting setting in place and time, Cathy. The 'Rosie the Riveter' women had such important jobs and did so much. And the story itself - the mystery - sounds intriguing, too. It's not easy to do a historical series; the balance between providing information and telling the story can be tricky. But it sounds as though Evans achieved it here.

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    1. She most certainly did!

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    2. Interesting. It does sound intriguing. My mother worked at a factory during WII and I think, she did close to what Rosie the Riveter did, although she never explained it. I like these characters as you describe them.

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    3. Evans has created a very interesting cast of characters.

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  2. I love the sound of this one! That time period is always fun to read about, and Justine and Georgette sound like a great characters. :)

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    1. They are, Lark. I think this is one that you will like. :-)

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  3. I've had good luck with WWII books based on the home front in the past, and this one sounds like a good bet. That cover is great, too...real eye-catcher.

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  4. I tend to shy away from books set in the WWII period. It is a personal prejudice of mine, maybe because I grew up with stories of the war from my father who was a part of Patton's Third Army. But more power to those who do enjoy them and I agree that the cover of this one is quite compelling.

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    1. I think one of the reasons why I read WWII-era books is that my grandfather, who fought in the Navy in the South Pacific during the war, never talked about his experiences, with the exception of three small details. Reading these books is like filling in all the blanks.

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  5. I'm glad you found it as good as the synopsis makes it sound. One of my book club friends loves WWII-era stories, so this is a likely candidate for discussion.

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    1. I would think that it's an excellent candidate!

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  6. My TBR mountain range is always in danger here.

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    1. Yes, you have to be careful when those piles shift.

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  7. I'm listening to Mary Anna Evans at the PP right now with Donis Casey. Interesting.

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